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Chapter 1

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Chapter 1Topic 1 AThe Nature and Uses of Psychological testing Measures of personality and intelligence are still the essential mainstays of psychological testingThe Consequences of testing From birth to old age we encounter tests at almost every turning point in life The babys first test conducted immediately after birth is the Apgar test a quick multivariate assessment of heart rate respiration muscle tone reflex irritability and color The total Apgar score 0 to 10 helps determine the need for any immediate medical attention Testing are carried out throughout ones life whether it be testing ones achievement on tests or a drivers test and so forth By the time they typical individual reaches retirement age it is likely that psychological test results will have helped to shape his or her destiny Psychological test results alter individual destiny in profound ways usually Whether a person is admitted to one college and not another offered one job but refused a second diagnosed as depressed or not all such determinations rest at least in part on the meaning of test results as interpreted by persons in authority Put simply psychological tests change livesA psychometrician is a specialist in psychology or education who develops and evaluates psychological testsDefinition of a Test A test is a standardized procedure for sampling behaviour and describing it with categories or scores In addition most tests have norms or standards Most tests possess these defining features standardized procedure behavioural sample scores or categories norms or standards prediction of nontest behaviourStandardized procedure is an essential feature of any psychological tests A test is considered to be standardized if the procedures for administering it are uniform from one examiner and setting to another The formulate of directions is an essential step in the standardization of a test The test developer must provide comparable stimulus materials to all testers specify with considerable precision the oral instructions for each item or subtest and advice the examiner how to handle a wide range of queries from the examineeA psychological test is also a limited sample of behaviour The sample of behaviour is of interest only insofar as it permits the examiner to make inferences about the total domain of relevant behaviours One point is that the test items need not resemble the behaviour that the test is attempting to predict While most tests do sample directly from the domain of behaviours they hope to predict this is not a psychometric requirementA psychological test must also permit the derivation of scores or categories In short psychological testing sums up performance in numbers of classificationsThe implicit assumption of the psychometric viewpoint is that tests measure individual differences in traits or characteristics that exist in some vague sense of the word The purpose of testing is to estimate the amount of the trait or quality possessed by an individual Two cautions are worth mentioning every test score will always reflect some degree of measurement error and consumers must be wary of reifying the characteristic being measured test results do not represent a thing with physical activity
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