Ethical Issues in Testing and Assessment Essay

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 10 January 2017

Ethical Issues in Testing and Assessment

Counselling psychology plays an essential role in the life of most individuals nowadays. Even various institutions like schools and corporations also used this field of psychology especially in dealing with their students and employees. Counselling psychology is responsible for conducting various tests and assessments in order to measure the intelligence, personality and other related factors concerning the behaviour of an individual. Nevertheless, ethical issues are often associated with these tests and assessments due to the sensitive cases that are involve in it.

A good example is the MMPI that is a kind of personality test. MMPI is a test that is designed to measure the pathological personality traits of an individual. It has been widely recognized and used as a personality assessment technique. The administration of this assessment takes about an hour and a half wherein the individual who would receive this test have to answer a large number of items that would reveal their personality (Butcher & Hostetler, 1990). The validity and reliability of the MMPI has been debated.

This is due to the fact that some argues that personality is very difficult to measure especially since it often deals with psychological construct. Moreover, ethical issues also become observable when this MMPI is not use for its intended purpose. The main objective of the MMPI is to give substantial result about the personality of an individual but some use it in terms of employment. The result of the MMPI becomes a basis for certain institutions or companies to discriminate individuals from a certain position (A Guide to Psychology and its Practice, n.d. ).

This becomes unethical since the MMPI is not similar to employment tests and thus, it does not give reliable results on whether a person should be hired or not for a particular occupation. Furthermore, personality test like the MMPI often fails to recognize that the personality of an individual has a lot to do with its cultural background. The MMPI should not be implemented universally since there should be discretion in using it depending on the type of culture that an individual has.

This is essential in order to get reliable results from this personality test. Lastly, ethical issues also exist in the administration and examination of the MMPI. This is due to the fact that psychologists who conduct these tests should not be subjective in interpreting its results. They should also observed confidentiality with regards to the result of such assessment as well as the necessary precaution in taking care of the important documents that concern the individuals whom they administered these tests.


A Guide to Psychology and its Practice. (n. d. ). Psychological Testing. Retrieved August 11, 2008, from http://www. guidetopsychology. com/testing. htm. Butcher, J. N. & Hostetler, K. (1990). Abbreviating MMPI Item Administration: What Can Be Learned From the MMPI for the MMPI – 2? Psychological Assessment: A Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology. Retrieved August 11, 2008, from http://www1. umn. edu/mmpi/Reprints/Abbreviating%20MMPI%20item%20administration. html.

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