Department of Psychology

Psychology 120
Sheila Deaner
Psychological Testing
278-7869, Lassen Hall 2302
Spring, 2002
Office Hour: Fri. 11: 00 - noon
T/Th 12 noon


Course Description

Psychology 120 is an upper level course that emphasizes test theory, test construction and test utility, and considers a variety of psychological tests from this perspective. We will first consider the history of testing and discuss ethical issues related to the administration and use of various tests. We will then consider key test concepts, such as development of test norms, test reliability and validity, and item analysis, that pertain to the development and use of any test. Following this we will examine a number of types of tests, such as intelligence tests, aptitude tests, interest tests, and personality tests, including both objective and projective techniques. I will demonstrate a number of tests in class, and you will take several tests and receive feedback on the results.

The course is not designed to teach you how to administer and score tests; this will come later for those of you who elect to pursue graduate study. Rather, the focus of the course is on your acquiring the knowledge related to test theory and test construction that will allow you to evaluate critically the tests that we consider in the course and that are currently in use in the field of psychological testing.

Text and References


  1. Psychological Testing and Assessment (Fifth Edition)

Ronald Cohen, Mark Swerdlik ; McGraw-Hill Publishing, 2002.

Useful References

  1. Handbook of Multicultural Assessment
  2. Lisa Suzuki, Paul Meller, Joseph Ponterotto; Jossey Bass Publishers, 1996.

  3. The Thirteenth Mental Measurements Yearbook
  4. James C. Impara and Barbara S. Plake; The Buros Institute of Mental Measurements, The University of Nebraska — Lincoln, 1995.

  5. Tests in Print V
  6. Linda Murphy, James Impara, Barbara Plake: The Buros Institute of Mental Measurements, The University of Nebraska — Lincoln, 1999.

  7. Test Critiques, Volumes I,II,III,&IV

D.J.Keyer/R.C.Sweetland; Test Corporation of America.

Course Requirements

Your grade in this course will be based upon three objective-type examinations, one class presentation, your completion of four required psychological tests and attendance. In class, we will discuss the class presentation and the guidelines for the presentation. I will provide a group interpretation for all the psychological tests taken. There will be a fee for these tests. The fee will be the "wholesale" costs from the testing companies and will not exceed $35.00.

Together, the three examinations will each count for about 90% of your course grade and the class presentation will count for about 10% of your course grade.

Credit will be given based on the following:

First Midterm 100 points
Second Midterm 100 points
Final 100 points
Project 35 points

Final grades will be based on the following:

301 to 335 points A
267 to 300 points B
233 to 266 points C
199 to 232 points D
Below 199 points F

Failure to complete the four psychological tests will result in the lowering of your course grade by one-half a letter grade. More than four absences (two weeks!) from class will lower your grade by one whole letter grade.

The three classroom examinations will be objective type (short answer or multiple choice questions exclusively or a combination thereof). The exams will be based upon text reading assigned for the course and material that I present in class. Although some of what I present in class will be covered in the text, I will also present material that is not in the text, as well as amplify and make critical comments on text material. Due to the difficulty of the material covered in this course, the final test will not be a comprehensive test. Please note: I do not give make-up examinations. The only exception is for medical emergencies and only with documentation from an appropriate medical professional.

If you have a documented disability and verification from the office of Services to Students with Disabilities, and wish to discuss adademic accomodations, please contact me as soon as possible.


Course Schedule & Reading Assignments


Unit I Cohen et al., Chapters 1,2,3,4,5,6

Jan 29/31 Origins, Nature and Uses of Psychological Tests
Feb 5/7 Social and Ethical Responsibility in Testing
Feb 12/14 Statistical Concepts, Norms, Correlation, Regression
Feb 19/21 Reliability and Validity
Feb 26/28 Review and Exam I (Exam on February 28th)

Unit II Cohen et al., Chapters 16,11,12,13,14

March 5/7 Self-Report Inventories/Interest Tests/Values Inventories
March 12/14 Industrial/Organizational Assessment
March 19/22 Self-Report Personality Tests
March 26/28 Spring Break
April 2/4 Projective Techniques
April 9/11 Projective Techniques Continued/Student Presentations
April 16/18 Student Presentations — Exam II (Exam on April 18)

Unit III Cohen et al., Chapters 8,9,10,15,17

April 23/25 Intelligence and Measurement/Tests of Intelligence
April 30/May 2 Tests of Intelligence continued
May 7/9 Achievement and Aptitude Tests/Student Presentations
May 14/16 Testing People with Disabilities/Current Trends and Issues in Testing/Computer-Assisted, Computer-Adaptive Testing
May 20-24 Exam III — To be held during final-exam week