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Stages Assessments | STAGES International

About STAGES Assessments

A stage is a coherent and internally consistent belief system that describes how someone is likely to think, feel, and behave in various life situations.

The STAGES Assessment identifies the test-taker’s core stage of perspective development. This is the level from which we consistently make meaning of life’s experiences.

Kinds of Assessments

All Assessments are done using a survey method called a Sentence Completion Test (SCT), a well-established methodology that is widely used in psychological research. The person taking the Assessment is given a list of sentence stems and is asked to complete each sentence. We call this list an Inventory.

We have several “inventories” you can choose from: Basic, Comprehensive, Specialty, Leadership & Organizations, and Premium. All of these Assessments will provide the overall developmental level of the test-taker.


Choose this if you’re interested in your overall, personal developmental level. The Comprehensive Assessment comes with a downloadable PDF report and session with a certified STAGES Debriefer. Debriefing is not like coaching but rather is a specifically designed process to walk you through your Assessment results, and to give you plenty of time to ask your own questions.

You can also choose to have our Premiem debriefing session with Terri O’Fallon, who will personally walk you through what your assessment says and what it means for you.

Specialty – Coming Soon

Speciality Assessments are designed to provide both your overall developmental level and your level inside of a speciality. Terri works with researchers in their fields, to create statistically accurate assessments, specific to any topic. Coming soon, we will be adding a variety speciality Assessments, which include custom downloadable PDF reports.

Leadership & Organizations

The Leadership & Organizations Assessment does two things: first, it provides your level of personal development. And it also outlines your level of development around Leadership and Organizational capacities. This will enable you to understand your level of development, and how that may differ from the level from which you tend to lead. So someone at the STAGES level of 4.5 might lead most fluidly from a level of 3.5, which will have major repercussions on how you’re perceived, where your greatest leadership skills lie, and how your leadership level might work for and against the larger goals inside your organization.

Executive coaches who are looking to use this assessment for their clients, please contact us for bundled pricing options and other ways we can support your work.

Collective Assessment

This test uses artificial intelligence (machine learning) to automatically score any variation of the STAGES sentence completion test. The results are less accurate than human scoring but robust enough to allow for valid analysis of group-level assessments (>18 people), including trends, pre-post gains, and sub-group comparisons.

The benefit of this test is that an entire company or department can be tested at once, and this can inform leadership and outside consultants about what kinds of initiatives are most likely to work in creating a strong and cohesive company culture.

A liberally-minded, environmental non-profit is likely to have a very different “center of gravity” than a church group, or department of hedge fund managers. Understanding your organization in this way can empower leadership to create and sustain the best kind of culture for their employees.

StageLens, a partner of STAGES International, works with you to design your evaluation. Participants take the STAGES assessment and the report provides charts and statistics specific to your organization. The report references anonymous IDs and demographic groupings, not identifiable individuals. Cost is determined on a per-project basis, depending on group size and depth of analysis and reporting.

What to Expect

After your assessment is complete, it will be scored by a certified STAGES Scorer within three weeks.

All assessments include a personalized, downloadable PDF report, including the answers to the assessment questions, and a complete explanation to the scoring. All Assessments, except the Individual, also include an online report outlining varying aspects of the STAGES Assessment and model.

Your personalized assessment report includes:

  • A summary statement that describes your core level of development, and a range of your scores.
  • The themes we find in four categories: interiors, actions, relationships, and systems orientation.
  • Recommendations for practice based on the results.

In your Assessment Debriefing Session, which is based on your personalized report, a certified STAGES Debriefer will fully explain your summary statement and answer specific questions you may have. They will also provide context for the places you are likely being challenged, your trailing edge, and offer insights on your leading edge, which helps you to place your Assessment inside of a bigger context.

Comprehensive Assessment & Debriefing Session

A full-length assessment for anyone who wants a comprehensive understanding of their developmental level.

  • 36-question, comprehensive assessment
  • You’ll receive an both an online and downloadable PDF report with a detailed breakdown of your test results, as well as the STAGES map and how it applies to your test.
  • Takes 45-60 minutes to complete
  • Includes a one-hour personal Debriefing session with a certified STAGES Debriefer, to apply your results to your life.


Leadership & Organizations Assessment & Debriefing Session

The Leadership/ Organizations Assessment is a fully validated developmental assessment which also provides a subtest for leaders and organizations. It is designed for anyone working in leadership roles.

  • 36-question, comprehensive assessment
  • You’ll receive an both an online and downloadable PDF report with a detailed breakdown of your test results, as well as the STAGES map and how it applies to your test.
  • Takes 45-60 minutes to complete
  • Includes a personal Debriefing session with a certified STAGES Debriefer to apply your results to your life.


Collective Assessment

Scores are tabulated by an artificial intelligence program. Individual scores will not be given.

  • Learn the overall developmental level of your organization
  • Chart trends over time; compare sub-groups and demographic categories
  • Works with any variation of the sentence completion assessment
  • Customizable to any-sized organization, from 18 people to 20,000 people
  • A coach will help to break down the meaning and implications of the test.

Link goes to our partner, StageLens.  

Certified Practitioner Partners

Once you have completed an assessment we recommend ongoing support from a STAGES certified coach, therapist, or  counsellor. This support is particularly helpful in working with shadow material, which is difficult to see.

We maintain a network of coaches, mentors, consultants and therapists who use STAGES in their work with clients. All practitioners in this network are Certified through STAGES International, Inc. and we have formal agreements to ensure their use of the STAGES model conforms to high professional and ethical standards. We nourish this network with ongoing training, and we encourage practitioners to share their experience so that we can continually refine STAGES and its applications.

Click here for a list of our certified Practitioner Partners.


What People are Saying

There are many wonderful approaches to understanding human development and the evolution of meaning-making. But forced to choose one, I would give my recommendation to the STAGES assessment and the team at Pacific Integral. Their grasp of identity growth over the lifespan is unmatched in both the psychological and spiritual dimensions. Further, their model is deeply grounded in the work of Ken Wilber and Integral Theory, while extending and sharpening those insights in novel and impressive ways. Whether you are seeking a professional-level understanding of how people change over time, or a personal assessment to guide your own growth-process, the STAGES approach will serve you deeply.

Mark Forman PhD
Author, A Guide to Integral Psychotherapy and Lead Instructor, the Certified Integral Psychotherapist (CIT) Professional Training Program

As a founding member of the Integral Institute, a founding teacher at the Integral Spiritual Center and as a part of the STAGES research team it is clear to me that in unparalleled ways STAGES honors, weaves together, and builds on Ken Wilber’s integral theory and the work of Jane Loevinger and Susanne Cook-Greuter on stages of human development. Through STAGES, Dr. Terri O’Fallon has developed the cutting edge theoretical and practical approach to provide the world the best means yet to understand, measures and pursue the interrelated quest of growing up and waking up into the highest reaches of human potential.

John Kesler

I have been working with the MAP/STAGES model for many years and find the assessments and underlying theory to be invaluable in working with leaders to better understand themselves and improve their effectiveness. When leaders understand their center of gravity and can assess others, they are able to modulate their leadership approach and communication style to resonate with those being led. This understanding and ability to adjust can significantly improve the leader’s ability to deliver against the organization’s mission.

Maureen Metcalf
CEO, Metcalf & Associates, Inc.

When looking at what you see, and seeing what you are looking at becomes an important part of who you are, few have been able to include language as an important clue for holding such an Inquiry. While holding this lightly, the tensegrity between resilience and robustness in Terri’s devotional work has contributed significantly to my own ongoing inquiry about trusting trustworthiness. Terri’s work makes such an endeavour potentially generative, allowing staying with not knowing, and enables all that accompanies the experience of that, and the nuances and distinctions we find there, increasingly closer to now.

Jean Trudel

Have a team you feel can develop greatly but don’t yet know the means to greatness? Need to strategically grow your own capability to meet the dynamics of the time? Have you seen your own perspective grow, or is limited, but don’t know why?

I’ve used the StAGES/MAP as a CEO, of a $750MM company, to grow my own capacity and our senior team to meet VUCA complexity as our Business expanded to achieve the complex adaptations we needed to grow personal and business vitality.

It works in ways unimaginable. Do it.

David Ford
Former CEO, CareOregon

Terri’s work brings the opportunity to appreciate the stages of ego development in a different register – beyond the usual cognitive way of knowing, Terri puts within our reach a heart and body sense, of our individual and universal becoming, in STAGES, a way to connect in which is at once accessible, and expansive.

Trish Nowland

I have been privileged to study closely with Terri as she has been developing her STAGES work and that process has been and continues to be like staring out through the diamond eyes of countless individuals. When we learn to look through the perspectives of others by this lens, the world that is revealed is one of harmony and majesty, replete with all of the suffering and sadness and joy and wisdom that it is to be human. I have found over the years that the leading benefit I derive from an enriched understanding of these stages of development is an increased capacity for compassion through insight into myself and into the others with whom I engage.

Kabir Kadre


How is STAGES different from other developmental models?

While the developmental research on which it is based grew out of the Loevinger/Cook-Greuter developmental lineage, the theory and scoring method are completely new. STAGES statistical research supports three new, later stages of development; it is an integrally based model, incorporating quadrants, levels and zones, assessing both context and whole person. Based on essential patterns of development, STAGES articulates both the wave-like patterns, as well as vertical stage aspects of development.
How is STAGES different from other developmental models?
The STAGES Matrix holds many things in common with other inventories. In the Loevinger lineage, ego development is the primary developmental focus of several models including the STAGES Matrix.

In her Ego Development Model, Susann Cook Greuter first developed the theory that development arose with these successive perspectives.

The STAGES Matrix adds to these existing models by defining the ego perspectives with very specific parameters so that we can measure the specific differences between the ego perspectives. The STAGES Matrix changes the theory of perspectives into a research-verified measurement of the perspectives.

Other models which have neo-constructive views show repeating patterns that can inform developmental predictions about where someone might be, based on the developmental patterning. This includes Fischer’s Skills Theory and Common’s mathematically based theory. The STAGES model also has repeating patterns which is in common with the neo-constructive theories.

Lastly there are many developmental models that focus on one specific area, such as morals (Kohlberg) cognition (Piaget), spiritual (Fowler) and skills (Fischer). The STAGES Matrix has allowed us to develop specialty inventories that also can focus on specific areas of interest while still holding the holistic views of the Individual and the collective.

The STAGES Matrix includes all three of these areas and integrates them: the measurement of the person perspectives which support our sense of ego self; the repeating patterns which supports a predictive element; and the specialty areas, which provides for the delving into specific areas along a developmental continuum.

Are the higher stages better, more valuable, more important, etc?
The later stages are just that – later. We say this because people go through previous stages to get to the new ones, and this implies more experience. However you live the stage you are in, how happy, generous, compassionate, will determine more about whether the stage you are in is more valuable or more important. Later stages may have capacities that earlier stages don’t have, but they can have pathologies that limit those capacities. It’s all about what you do with where you are.
Why are the models so linear and concrete? Development seems like a much messier process and doesn’t seem to follow these linear, stair-step kind of models?
This model isn’t a stair-step model. It is vertical, horizontal and diagonal, and it includes states as a part of development. We see the stages developing in a wave like fashion. No two waves are exactly the same. Nonetheless if we use the human body as a metaphor, humans all have the same number of bones in their skeleton. On top of that are their organs, their muscles and circulatory and nervous system, skin, etc., as well as the human personality. This model works more on the level of the skeleton. It won’t tell you what someone’s personality is like, or if their face is “beautiful,” black or brown, male or female—it simply describes the skeleton. Everything else is unique.
How do I take the Assessment?
It is a web-based system. After purchasing your Assessment, you will receive an invitation with full instructions to take the inventory. You your responses to 36 sentence starters will be securely recorded online. After the scoring is complete, you will receive your report online. We have been working with web-based scoring and reporting for the past 5 years.
How are results collated?
We have implemented a statistical formula into the platform so that once the scoring has been completed, it will generate the statistical score. But our analysts spend a lot of time looking at the strength of the responses in addition to that statistical score, and their input is a valuable part of the final scoring process.
Are results interpreted by the assessor initially or is it an automatically generated profile?
Although the statistics are automatically generated, the analyst scores each individual sentence, generates the comments by looking at the patterns in the writing of the participant, and generates recommendations that are specific to the particular responses of the participant.
What does the final report look like?
What does the final report look like?
The final report is an electronic report and indexed so that you can go back and forth between the comments, the stages descriptions, your responses, and the statistical results seamlessly. The online report will always be indefinitely accessible to you online. Any part of the report can be printed. We also have downloadable reports for our inventories which are provide in PDF format.
Is it only for individuals or can you stage assess teams or organizations?
We score individuals, but we can collate individual inventories for a team or an organization so that you can learn the center of gravity of your organization, and the range of levels the organization or team has within them, and compare to other samples.

If you have questions about the Assessment process or need help registering, please contact us.

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