PSYCHOLOGICAL TESTING AND ASSESSMENT 5
ThePsychological Testing and Assessment
ThePsychological Testing and Assessment
Psychologicaltesting is the use of a standardized and objective measure ofbehavior. Results are free from bias, relatively valid and reliable.The paper outlines various forms of psychological tests and theirapplication. The analysis method has a variety of uses in the worldof today. It has a use in occupational settings where it is appliedto aid interviewers in personnel selection for jobs. It is also usedin education to identify learning capabilities and difficulties ofevery student. The test is also widely used in clinical observations,diagnosis and treatment of various mental and emotionalcomplications. Due to their diversity, they are used in differentfields for various purposes as outlined in this paper (Hersen, 2004).
Psychologicaltests are of several categories. The first group includes aptitudeand achievement tests found in schools and places of work. They areused to assess the maximum performance and typical performance of anindividual. Another category is the intelligent tests that try tomeasure basic ability of a person in understanding the environmentand using knowledge acquired from the environment (Kaplan &Saccuzzo, 2013). There are also the neuropsychological tests thatassess normality of cognitive functioning like talking, hearing andthinking. Personality assessment test identifies personality stylesand preferences while occupational tests determine one’s interestin certain careers (Heim, 1975).
Acounselor can choose several clinically named tests. However, beforesettling on any of them, a counselor needs first to identify whetherthe test selected is appropriate to his client. He must also try toestablish whether the selected test is relatively easy to monitor andadminister or whether it can produce objective results. A number ofresources are available to help a counselor in selecting anappropriate psychological test for his client. According to Gregory(1996), counselors can refer to resources like books and internet ofthe various psychological and counseling associations. These includeAmerican Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT),American Counseling Association (ACA), America PsychologicalAssociation (APA) among others.
Acounselor must consider the following aspects in selecting a test foreach client. The first consideration is the fairness and freedom frombias. The variables measured must be independent and free from thosewho are taking tests and from prevailing circumstances of the test.It means that the test must be able to show existing differences.Another aspect that a counselor must consider is the reliability ofthe test. Reliability is a degree of how a test accurately measuresthe outcome and can repeatedly result in the same outcome withexceptionally allowed degree of error (Cohen, 2013).
Validityis another aspect that needs consideration. Validity is thespecification of a test or what the test is measuring. Validityrequires the test to be precise in it undertaking, and it discouragesgeneralization. Therefore, a test is valid only when it measures aspecified quality or ability (Hersen, 2004). Economic aspect needsconsideration when selecting a psychological test for a client. Thetest should be affordable in terms of money, availability of properequipment to undertake the analysis and time used in carrying out thetest. The counselor must liaise with the client to discuss the costinvolved in any test so that the customer becomes aware whether it isaffordable or not.
Anotherfactor to consider in selecting a test is interpretation of theresult. The test must produce information that can be interpretedusing various criterions and statistical representations (Shum,O`Gorman & Myors, 2006).
Beforea counselor begins to collect data for a certain test, he or she mustfirst set the purpose of the test and the type of the data to obtain.Having specified the purpose of the test and the data needed, acounselor can then continue in applying assessment tools to determinethe appropriateness of the test.
Differentindividuals require different psychological tests. Counselors andpsychologists pick a set of tests and assessments for each client. Itinvolves the use of formal means of obtaining data such asquestionnaires. Assessments include the use of informal tests,clinical interviews, surveys, and observations. Psychologistsdetermine the information to use on the basis of specific questions.In most cases, the psychologist administering a test may treat theirclients with psychotherapy. A number of psychologists focus onevaluation and diagnosis of their client’s problem and afterwardrefer them for treatment to other specialists. In both cases, testsand assessments help in ensuring that clients get treatment andservices tailored to suit each of them (Cohen & Swerdlik, 2005).
Insummary, many psychological tests are not available to the public dueto restrictions from government’s licensing board and testspublishers. Government licensing board safeguards disclosure ofinformation and result interpretations. Test publishers are concernedwith the copyright of their intellectual property and ethical issuesin safeguarding the secrecy and privacy of their procedures.Therefore, buyers are can only get legal permission to discloseanswers or tests to the public.
Heim,A. W. (1975). Psychologicaltesting.London: Oxford University
Gregory,R. J. (1996). Psychologicaltesting: History, principles, and applications.Allyn and Bacon: Boston.
Shum,D., O`Gorman, J., & Myors, B. (2006). Psychologicaltesting and assessment.Oxford University Press: South Melbourne.
Cohen,R. J., Swerdlik, M. E., & Sturman, E. D. (2013). PsychologicalTesting and Assessment: An Introduction to Tests and Measurement[8th Ed.]. McGraw-Hill: New York
Kaplan,R. M., & Saccuzzo, D. P. (2013). Psychologicaltesting: Principles, applications, & issues.Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.
Hersen,M. (2004). Comprehensivehandbook of psychological assessment.Hoboken, N.J: J. Wiley
Koocher,G. P., Keith-Spiegel, P., & Keith-Spiegel, P. (1998). Ethicsin psychology: Professional standards and cases.New York: Oxford University Press.