Introducing the Concept of ‘Profiling’ of Optimal Best

A School of Education seminar presented on September 6th, 2017 by Huy P. Phan, Bing H. Ngu and Oqab Alrashidi

We recently introduced the Framework of Achievement Bests (Phan, Ngu, & Alrashidi, In Press; Phan, Ngu, & Yeung, 2017), which provides a detailed account of the psychological process of optimization. Optimization attempts, for example, to explain the achievement of optimal functioning (e.g., what is the best that I can do?). The Framework of Achievement Bests emphasizes the importance of the different levels of best practice that a person may experience, which, in turn, reflect an internal state of flourishing. Arising from this theorization is the development of the Academic Optimal Outcome Questionnaire (AOOQ) (Phan, Ngu, & Williams, 2015) that allows to measure two levels of best practice: realistic achievement best practice and optimal achievement best practice. Statistical analyses of the AOOQ using a large cohort of Taiwanese University students (N = 1010) have enabled us to propose a new theoretical tenet, namely: the ‘profiling’ of best practice. This theorization posits four major profiles that students may indicate and exhibit: the ‘Pessimistic Profile’, the ‘Unrealistic Profile’, the ‘Realistic Profile’, and the ‘Exceptional Profile’ of best practice. For this seminar presentation, we want to discuss this newly developed theorization of student profiling, and to offer some psychological and educational insights for implementation.