Psychological Testing Essay

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Psychological Testing

Individual intelligence tests are of two types; Stanford-Binet Intelligence Test and Wechsler tests. They tests individual’s intelligence in arithmetic, vocabulary, comprehension, verbal amongst other disciplines. Individual tests are mostly used in education placement, clinical assessment and to measure an individual’s skills in the event a wide a large of individuals are being examined (Roid, 2003). Stanford-Binet Intelligence Test is used in testing children that are intellectually deficient in order to place them in the special education programmes.

These tests are taken individually. Individual tests are characterized by several advantages; they make it possible for the examiner to interact with the examinee establishing a rapport in which the interaction can be observed and assessed. They also provide information on why some methods and tactics used to measure intelligence fail. Individual tests also make it possible for the examiner to assess a variety of abilities in examinees as it is not restricted. Individual tests provide a better way of assessing children are emotionally disturbed (Roid, 2003).

These tests make it possible for assessments to be made on examinees that are in any physical or emotional condition such as tired, sick or anxious. Group intelligence tests involve assessing a series of many different problems in a mass of examinees. They are commonly used in schools and the military. They could be aptitude tests, scholastic assessment tests or tests of cognitive abilities. They are characterised by pen and paper, usually are time limited, involve almost nil examiner to examinee interaction are have multiple choices making them easy to score.

They are normally used in school and job placements, and in the study of certain norms or phenomena in a population (Santrock, 2008). Group tests have the advantage of simplifying examiner’s role as they are quick and easy to administer. It is also possible to administer them on simultaneously to large numbers of examinees. Scoring in group tests is more objective as compared to individual tests. Group tests are often non-verbal (Santrock, 2008).

Group tests give data that is more reliable as they make it possible for large numbers to be studied which provide good representative of the entire population, the resulting data and conclusion is therefore more reliable as it is more representative of the population than if the norms were being studied in an individual as is with individual tests. 7. The advantages and disadvantages of projective versus objective personality assessment methods Projective personality assessment method is a test that involves use of open-ended questions to examine the person being tested.

Projective tests involve questions that are unstructured hence give the person being examined more freedom to respond in the appropriate way as compared to objective tests. These tests normally require the examinee to respond to stimuli that is ambiguous (Hilsenroth & Segal, 2004). It is based on the fact that people respond to stimuli that are ambiguous in ways that bring to light their feelings, desires and needs. The advantage of this method is that makes it possible for the psychologist to study and examine unconscious aspects of subject’s personality.

These tests are not transparent hence create no opportunity for subjects to lie or fake their personality traits. The weakness of projective tests is that the collected information is not as reliable and viable as is needed. This is based on the fact that the psychologists that use the method assume that the subjects can not lie about their personality. Analysing data collected by this method can be time consuming and tiring as it needs the psychologist to go through it by himself. New technology such as computer scoring which is fast can not be used in this method (Hilsenroth & Segal, 2004).

Objective personality assessment method involves the use of questions and items that are standardized, specific and clear in testing individuals under study. These tests are characterized by limited choice of the examinee’s responses. Most of the questions are designed such that they require yes or no, and true or false responses. Objective testing has several advantages. Objective methods fast to carry out. This is attributed to the fact that the answers required are directive and do not need the respondents to think or expand on the answers giving unnecessary details that waste time (Hilsenroth & Segal, 2004).

This enables the data to be collected and analysed within a short time availing results within the required time. This method is also more economical as compared to the projective testing method. This because the questions are easy to prepare and the fact that all they need is yes or no responses implies that they do not require a lot of space. This saves on the cost of printing the questionnaire as less pages are required. The questions are also easy to answer making the researcher to collect the needed data very fast hence does not spend a lot of time in the field which saves money that would have been used on upkeep and transport.

Objective test methods also make it possible for technology to be used such as computer scoring which is faster, less tiring and more efficient as compared to projective tests that require the researcher to go through the responses by himself in order to come up with the results ( Hilsenroth & Segal, 2004). . Like any other method, objective assessment methods also have disadvantages. These methods usually involve questions that are transparent which makes the individuals under study to know what the psychologists want to study in them.

This makes them lie or forge answers. In the event the individual carrying out the test does not include lie scales which provide information to the researcher on the likelihood of the subject lying then wrong data is collected. This tests also characterized by collection of biased data as it provides opportunity for the subject to respond not the way things are but the way they wish things were. (Hilsenroth & Segal, 2004). The structure of the questions does not allow the subjects to add more information on their yes or no, true or false answers.

This could cause the psychologist to miss out o9n vital information. 3. Some of the misconceptions concerning the differences between aptitude and achievement tests. Achievement tests are the common tests that are usually given out in classrooms and educational assessments. They are used to test what an individual can do or what they know. They are usually administered after some activity to test if individuals have grasped whatever was being taught. Examples are classroom quizzes, continuous assessment tests, driving tests, final examinations amongst others.

Achievement tests in school are used to determine whether students understand what has been taught, which classes to place them, they are also used to rate schools and predict an individual’s success in certain disciplines in future if they are doing well. Aptitude tests usually are carried out to assess the mental abilities of individuals. These tests based on the concept that innate mental abilities of individuals can be measured. Aptitude tests are usually carried out to test student’s mental ability as they are believed to give a picture of how the student can perform academically.

It is believed that those who pass the test qualify academically for what course they are applying for. Examples of aptitude test include SATs. Aptitude tests have been referred to as quality measurement on ones mental ability. However, critics of the concept argue that innate abilities can not be measured hence the test just like any other test is used to measure what an individual has been able to achieve by the time the test is being carried out. The results of this test hence demonstrate the individuals’ achievement in the subjects that were being tested on. This is true in spite of what the subject the questions are testing on.

As such, aptitude tests are very much the same as achievement tests. The difference between the two tests however is in the assumption about individuals that take the two tests. With aptitude test, there is a misconception that there is equal opportunity to learn for everyone taking the test. It also is assumed that the interest of individuals taking aptitude test in learning is equal and also in demonstrating the learnt ability on the test. With achievement test it is assumed that the tests usually are based on instructions of a course or on some training that is not necessarily available to all the individuals taking the test.

The misconception concerning the difference between the two tests therefore lies in the assumption that there is equal opportunity for passing in aptitude tests while achievement tests can only be passed by those who have access to the course or training instructions. 6. Information is presumably gathered by the typical projective technique Projective techniques are methods of assessing personality traits of individuals that use questions that are unstructured and not specific.

The questions used in this technique are not transparent implying that the individuals being studied can not identify what the researcher or a psychologist is looking from them (Lilienfeld, Wood & Garb, 2001). Usually projective technique is used to study response of subjects to questions or situations that are ambiguous. It is perceived that the fact that these situations are not known to the subjects will enable them to respond appropriately without having to lie or change their personality. It is believed that individuals respond to ambiguous situations and questions in an honest way.

Their response to these situations that they do not clearly understand brings out their true personality as it there is no opportunity for lie or personality to be altered or changed. Psychologists who use the method to collect information on personality argue that human being’s always respond to ambiguous stimuli in a way that brings out their personal needs, wants, wishes and desires (Lilienfeld, Wood & Garb, 2001). This technique is believed to make it possible for psychologists to assess the unconscious aspect of the individuals being studied character.

As such, it provides no room for personality faking. Human beings are believed to have no control over the unconscious part of their psychology. The unconscious aspect of our psychology is believed to be what really defines us in terms of character. Psychologists argue that humans thought, actions hence character originate from their unconscious aspect of psychology. The fact that this technique enables the psychologist to study the subject’s unconscious aspect of personality has therefore been used in gathering personality information.

This technique unlike the others makes it possible for individuals being studied to consciously give information that is biased and accurate. The notion that individuals are not restricted in responding to ambiguous has made this method to be used for collecting data on personality. 4. The reasons which dictate that an organization, whether industrial or governmental, to use valid selection procedures for hiring workers. There are several reasons as to why organizations use valid selection procedures for hiring employees.

These procedures are useful in the several processes that involve hiring. In selection of employees to hire, the assessment tools that are used in valid selection procedures enable organizations to identify the best individuals for the job as they are able to identify the individual’s character traits that are required of the specific job. An assessment tool that is well properly developed will guide the recruitment team in selecting successful and suitable individuals for the particular occupation and position they are recruiting for.

Valid selection procedures also eliminate cases of unfairness from arising making the whole process efficient and professional (Weiner & Graham, 2003). Valid selection procedures for hiring are important in job placement. They enable organizations’ management to assign employees to the right job responsibilities and levels. Assessment helps provide information that enables organizations to make the right decisions assigning of responsibilities which increase performance hence productivity of the organization. Valid assessment procedures are important in training and development of employees.

The assessment enables an organization to determine which employee needs what training. The organization is able to know if its employees have mastered training procedures and materials that are vital for operation and running of the organization (Weiner & Graham, 2003). Assessments carried out enable the organization to design or make changes in training programmes so that the most needed ones are given priority. Assessment procedures also enable individual employees to identify their weaknesses hence can embark on self-development.

This has positive results as it enables it to have employees that are skilful and well trained hence increasing productivity. Assessment procedures also play a great role in promotion or demotion of employees. The procedures enable the organization’s management to identify employees that have been improving in their performance and skills. Those who possess managerial characteristics or even higher capabilities are identified hence promoted to greater positions that have more responsibilities (Weiner & Graham, 2003).

On the other hand, those who seem to making no progress or have decreasing performance are demoted as ant serious organization would not want to have employee especially those holding positions of great responsibility that are not performing. Valid assessment procedures provide a professional and fair way of carrying out promotions and demotions ensuring that the right employees are assigned to the right positions and responsibilities. Assessment procedures are also significant in career guidance and exploitation. These assessments help individuals make not only educational but career choices as well.

The assessments make individuals identify the subjects they are good in hence accordingly choose careers that they will be successful in without have to strain their mental capability. The assessments procedures also enable organizations to carry out evaluation of programs. The organization is able to identify programs that benefit employees and those that do not so that it can stop wasting resources on irrelevant programs. Word Count: 2280. References Hilsenroth, M & Segal, D. (2004). Comprehensive Handbook of Psychological Assessment: Personality assessment / editors.

New York, NY: John Wiley and Sons. Lilienfeld, S. O. , Wood, J. N. , & Garb, H. N. (2001). The scientific status of projective techniques. Psychological Science in the Public Interest, 1, 27-66. Roid, G. H. (2003). Stanford Binet Intelligence Scales 5th Edition: Examiner’s Manual. Riverside Publishing, Itaska, Illinois. Santrock, J. (2008). A Topical Approach to Life-Span Development (4th Ed. )Concept of Intelligence. New York: McGraw-Hill. Weiner, I. & Graham, J. (2003). Handbook of Psychology: Assessment psychology. New York, NY: John Wiley and Sons.

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