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Psychological Testing is a branch of discipline of psychology of clinic that focuses on the measurement of human traits, capabilities, characteristics and personalities. It entails things like an individual's attitude, social endowments and skills. This tests dates back from 1000 B.C. in the Chinese history, where they were used to file civil services work. They were introduced in USA in 1850s. To date, there have been a wide spread adaptation of testing that are computerized and even smart tests.
Over the years, a number of various psychological testing that include personality tests, aptitude and achievement tests, intelligent tests, occupational tests and neuropsychological tests have occured. The major users of this various types of tests entail researchers, clinical testing, personnel, the education bodies and the military. The idea of reliability and validity of the tests are primary to the psychological testing use and they have had effects on the psychology of individuals.
In order to use of these tests and come up with accurate results, there are some assumptions that have to be made. The first one is that the examiners must believe that the individuals' characteristics and traits are quantifiable, can be differentiated among individuals and measurable. They must also suppose that the traits of an individual describe critical important aspects of that person. Moreover, believing that these characteristics and traits are reasonably consistent and permanent, so that there are less or no fluctuations is another assumption. Lastly, the examiner must have skills to be able to observe characteristics and traits through some outlined behaviors that are observable (Wasserman, 2003).
There are various classes of psychological testing which entails quantifying the mental ability of an individual through some group or individual administered tests. These tests measure the memory, intelligence, creative thinking, partial ability and vocabularies of a person. Other tests which are applied like educational tests are used by teachers or facilitators to measure the students' academic success or verify if the student learnt a given topic. For personality and ability tests, they are used mostly in a personnel framework by companies and businesses. They are also used by military when choosing the best applicants for a give position or to assign existing employees to positions where they can do their best (Steer, 1996).
Test validity and test reliability, are tools that are used to measure the effectiveness or the sustainability of the test. For reliability, it refers to the dependability and consistency of the psychometric results of any test. To add, reliability never deals with errors that are constant to all individuals, but only those errors that vary among individuals. For validity, it is concerned with clarification test results to a given specific interpretation. The interest of this is on the purpose of carrying out the test (Stoker, 2010).
In addition, validity entails applicability of test scores on the traits being measured. No test should be used for another purpose than that which it was intended to be used for. If the test is used for another purpose, its interpretation and reliability will become very minimal. To all tests, consistency is wholly concerned with the reliability and the dependability of the gauge being used in the test. It is important to indicate that a test can only be valid if it is reliable, as a test can be reliable but it may lack validity (Western, 1991).
Many tests have been privatized and not easily available to all, but rather, they have been restricted by both psychology licensing body and the publishers of those tests to prevent the disclosure of those tests and even the way the results are interpreted. These tests are sold only to those who may have proven their professional and educational qualifications to the testers' satisfaction.
In conclusion, all psychological tests measure characteristics and personality construct through use of achievements, personality, attitudes, ability and neuropsychological tests, to the final end of interpreting results for some purposes within the outlines assumptions. These tests are of great use in modern times to compare individuals' personalities and abilities mostly when choosing the best person for a given position.