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Lecture 3

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Anthony Ruocco

Psychological Assessment History of Psychological Testing Dr. Anthony C. Ruocco University of Toronto Scarborough Rudimentary Forms of Testing in China in 2200 B.C. Emperor had his officials examined every third year for fitness for office  Examining abilities that are relavent to everyday practice and performance memory, cognitions, emotional fitness Written exams were introduced in the Han dynasty testing knowledge about -> civil law, military affairs, agriculture, revenue and geography Round 1: individuals get one day and one night isolated in a booth to write essays and poem Round 2 : If you pass that round , You would then go for 3 seprate sessions for 3 days and nights doing a similar procedure -> it was very rigorous because they were high ranking positions Round 3: you would then travel to Pecking for a final round of examinations to finally become members How valid is this system?  They did not really validate this test  They were certain things that they did consider important -> they valued, which were tested, were clarity of writing (penmanship-> highly valued skilled), but most aspects of this test were NOT validated so people were not really happy with this widespread discontent, as a result this whole system was abolished by royal decree in 1906 and it highlights the importance of psychological testing even as far back as 2200 BC Physiognomy Physiognomy is based on the notion that we can judge the inner character of people from their outward appearance  Researchers at U of T do this research  Negrould studies snap judgement of faces and examines whether people are able to identify a person‘s level of power based on their faces  Snapshots of people‘s faces -> people can tell which companies would be more successful if they were led by certain CEO‘s (certain faces)  If you look at yearbook pictures of people who have led on later to commit suicide, you (U of T students) can actually tell with a greater level of chance (who commited suicide) just by looking at their pictures (facial features)  Aristotle said the Notion that somehow the Soul and the body sympathize with each other, there‘s an intertaction between the soul (i.e. which some people today call personality) and some of these physical characteristics So changes in a person‘s soul could impact the appearance of the body  Mother museum in Philadelphia: an old medical abnormality museum- things taken out of their bodies. One part talked about physiognomy and how it translated into their character  The expert said this face represents a hateful character-> none of his muscles are expressive; the character has disfigured his body; ->in the early 1900 this is how they described people‘s personality they looked at the face‘s nose, eyebrows, eyes, etc.) Phrenology Franz Joseph Gall (1758–1828) Brain capacities are localized ( you can isolate certain parts of the brain as being relavant to specific functions and it’s not a completely absurd idea because we do this today) When a specific faculty develops, the corresponding brain area enlarges  Causes a ―bump‖ on the skull (ex. after this course ‗Psych. Assessment‘, a bump on your head will get bigger and bigger and then measure those bumps, and the prof. would give a grade based on the size of those bumps-hypothetically =P ) Psychograph (consists of hundreds of moving parts assembeled in a large helmet- like device fitted over the examinee‘s head) is used to automatically read these bumps; provide results on the person‘s personality based on the measured results of the person‘s bumps on the head  They created a map that if you ..  If you have a bump at the very back of your head is apnitudeness (love)  Toward (memory, language)  Phrenological map where different abilities might‘ve resided based on the bumps of the maps  The psychogreaph made a small fortune at first but then later went out of business The Brass Instruments Era of Testing Emphasis on objective methods Used assorted brass instruments to measure sensory thresholds and reaction times (at what point do you actually feel the physical experience of the sense of touch – if he‘s touching your skin) Mistook simple sensory processes for intelligence Wilhelm Wundt found the first experimental psychology lab EVER and used a lot of these brass instruments in order to test basic perceptual and sensational abilities and one of the first people to focus on the speed of thought  Using telescopes, he conclcuded that the speed of thought might differ from one person to the next  There‘s a museum located on the University College in 1907 on the second floor – a lot of the research took place here  An adjustable wooden organ pipe  Organ instrument  Colour blind test  A colour mixer These help us measure abilities Galton and the First Battery of Mental Tests  Galton invented the first battry of tests  Galton‘s two most influential works were Hereditary Genius and Inquiries into Human Faculty Individual differences not only exist, but also are objectively measurable (he was the first to come up with this) Devised procedures to allow the collection of data from many subjects- this was an important development because rather than going at a slow pace collecting data from individuals, we can increase efficiency in data collection International Health Exhibition in 1884  Hand diamometer (measure grip strength) -> ex. if measuring someone who had a brain injury  Even though this was developed way back then, we still use this today Cattell Imports Brass Instruments to the United States Invented the term ―mental test‖ Wissler (Cattell‘s student) tries to validate brass instrument testing with >300 students and examining whether academic performance was related to performance on these things associated with individual differences  Found very little correlation between mental test scores and academic performance This paved the way to Alfred Binet‘s more sensible and useful measures of higher mental processes  I.Q. tests Cattel: The mentor gave him a box that Cattell had stored all his personality inventories in this box, but when the prof. moved to Philadelphia, he threw it away Rating Scales and Their Origins Used as a means of quantifying subjective psychological variables Ex. Vidusal analog scale:objectively measure scales Ex. you got into a skiing accident and brpoke your leg; I can‘t just measure pain because I can‘t take a measure of blood, etc. so the best way is to ask them on a scale of 1-10  For those who are nonverbal, you can look at their faces- angry, sad, happy, anxious Francis Galen (second century) recognized the need to go beyond a simple dichotomy (hot-cold) Christian Thomasius (1655–1728) was a German philosopher who developed a the
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