Tests and Assessments


Testsand Assessments

Tests andassessments are separate but two related psychological evaluationcomponents. The two types of tools are used by psychologists toassist them in diagnosis and treatment plan. Testing is characterizedby questionnaires or checklists. Testing is important because ithelps the test-takers during evaluation with similar norm-referencedtests no matter where they are or who is administering the tests(Cohen &amp Swerdlik, 2005). Tests, for example the norm-referencedtests, are important since they have been proven as effective inmeasuring a specific disorder. On the other hand, assessments involvenumerous components, for example informal tests, medical or schoolrecords, observational and evaluation data, and interviewinformation. Assessments are important because they are used todetermine an individual’s disorder or traumatic brain injury(Carter, 2011). Assessments are also important in determining anindividual’s good managerial skills or the ability to interact withother members of team, for example a clinical interview, which iscarried out to determine the ability of a client to reason andinteract with others.

Test-retestreliability refers to a measure of psychological test consistency orassessment. It is also one of the simplest ways to test thereliability and stability of an instrument over time. Test-retestreliability is important because it assesses whether the measurementsremain stable for a long time between two particular points in time.Test-retest reliability measure helps provide a person an IQ test andtwo days later, provide them with the same IQ test to determine ifthe results are similar or the same (Cohen &amp Swerdlik, 2005). Itis important because it also ensures results consistency since thestudy will likely produce similar results whenever tests areadministered. To undertake test-retest reliability means that whenthe study is low, the results will be determined due to factors apartfrom manipulating independent variables such as fatigue. Therefore,this reliability helps eliminate high chances of the results havingerrors or is confounded with variables (Cohen &amp Swerdlik, 2005).Finally, when putting into consideration the importance oftest-retest reliability, it should be noted that without it, thestudy undertaken, would not be valid.

With regard totesting and assessment, it is important to check they are both validand reliable. Considering reliability is the consistency inmeasurement, or administrations of surveys, this means that in awritten questionnaire, the same item under study, could measure thesame things across similar correspondents. In addition, this mayapply to interviews, which may require reliability that runs acrossall interviewers. To improve reliability, considering I am part ofthe panel handling the interviews, I would ask a number of variedquestions, which regards the same phenomenon. Carter (2011) observesthat the kind of measurement which combines the response from relatedsurvey items, are put in one single score to measure to handle aphenomenon or score. In addition, I would protest or do piloting,which will help improve its reliability.

Since validity isthe degree whereby the instrument is used to measure whatever isintended, one important validity question that would be asked is:What match could be between the information given by the instrumentand needed to be known – the inference we demand to get from theresults? It means that to improve validity, I would have to go deepinto deriving clear questions, which I would use to aim at accurateinformation. Back to reliability, I would also use pretesting andpiloting in tests and assessments to also increase validity (Cohen &ampSwerdlik, 2005). I would also use survey scales, which combinesnumerous related items into one single score in order to measurewider phenomenon.

ConfidenceIntervals refer to a range of values that surrounds the score, whichis obtained as a result of administration of standardized tests. Forexample, one may want calculate the average age of babies who arelearning to use a potty. Considering it is hard to carry out a surveyof the entire babies population, one could only take, let’s say 50babies for example, and calculate the average age whereby they werepotty-trained successful. And since we expect that all the 50 babiesto be a representative of the entire population, the average age ofbabies trained can be said to be 25 months. Confidence intervals areimportant in testing and assessment. Since it represents a range ofscores, which are likely during the survey, in this case of babiesfor example, could be repeated. There is close relationship betweenthe confidence intervals and tests and assessments (Cohen &ampSwerdlik, 2005). It is important because it provides statisticalinference, which also helps in determining the likelihood that theresults obtained from the research methods may be put to chancerather than offer intervention effects. It is also important inidentification of subgroups in a population, which is under study,while it offers differences in between or among groups that arestudied.

Reliability andvalidity is marred with a number of problems. In reliability, theproblem often stems from the choice as to whether the results from astudy could be applied in a larger group apart from the ones who tookpart in the study. These problems are often traced to challenges asto how the resulting data is collected. In regard to validity, theproblem is also with data gathering, which often represents numerousconcepts that could be quite complex (Carter, 2011). The problem alsogoes down to whether the results are a representation of the actualstudy. For example, if a marketer wants to purchase a research reportthat shows how individuals compare the competitor’s product overthe marketer’s product, the problem arises when determining howdata was collected. The question that arises here is as to how theresearch conducted captures the actual information the way it issupposed to, and the possibility of also questioning the actualresults.


Carter, P. J. (2011). IQ and psychometric tests: Assess yourpersonality, aptitude and intelligence. London: Kogan Page.

Cohen, R. J., &amp Swerdlik, M. E. (2005). Psychological testingand assessment: An introduction to tests and measurement. Boston:McGraw-Hill.