After taking the VALS survey, I was primarily categorized as a "Striver". The description of this category seemed inaccurate to how I view myself and my values, however a couple aspects may be applicable.
My primary categorization, "Striver", is described as a "trendy and fun loving" person who seeks approval from others. While my vanity encourages me to consider myself trendy, I must admit this is rather inaccurate, and I also hope to be seen as fun loving, but my cynicism makes me doubt that I am. Another quality mentioned in the description is "a lack of skills and focus often prevents them from moving ahead". This phrase stung a bit, I will admit. Having participated in two sports throughout high school, working at least 12 hours a week during the school year, and maintaining a UW-Madison worthy GPA, I like to think I am focused and achievement driven.
Another aspect of the description was buying habits. "Strivers" are supposedly impulsive buyers who hope to emulate high financial status then they truly have. I like to think I lead a modest life in relation to my financial status and do not live outside my means. Finally, in each of the descriptions is a list of supposedly "Favorite Things" of people in that category. "Striver's" favorite things are listed as Chevrolet automobiles, Coke Classic, Playboy magazine, and winning the lottery. Being raised in an all Ford everything sort of family, I was immediately offended. The Coke Classic is rather mundane, however, Playboy is offensive for obvious reasons, and winning the lottery implies a preoccupation with money that I very much hope to avoid in life.
Many of the questions were very similar, which I assume was purposeful, and there were not many questions in the survey (about 40). Overall, I do not think the number of questions, especially considering the repetition, could produce results with such specific categorization while maintaining accuracy.