Psychological Measurement – PSYC 421

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

A study of standardized tests in psychology, counseling and education. Includes personality, aptitude, general ability, achievement and interest tests. Elementary statistics necessary to test usage and interpretation will be a part of the course.


PSYC 355 and PSYC 255 and (PSYC 101 or PSYC 210)


Thousands of psychological tests are used in the fields of psychology, counseling, business, and education.  However, not all of these tests meet accepted standards of reliability and validity.  It is important for the student to be able to evaluate if a particular psychological test meets accepted standards. In addition to identifying proper tests, students must also be aware of the many types of tests used in clinical settings and how these tests are used, the limitations of tests, the information derived from these tests, and how they are used to formulate treatment.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Course Learning Outcomes (CLO’s)

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  • Evaluate qualitative as well as quantitative methods of analysis in determining the quality of a good and bad tests for suitability in clinical settings.
  • Evaluate the nature and purposes of testing, how results are used and how results can be misused. Students will also understand how results are used to form treatment in clinical settings.
  • Demonstrate the skills of gathering information from a library including computerized information sources, bibliographic systems, computerized literacy skills in word processing, APA format, conducting internet/electronic searches, as well as application of other resources from which one can present a persuasive argument.
  • Evaluate the language of the discipline found in textbooks and scientific journal articles, and present written arguments in the terminology of the discipline using elements of style and the presentation of scientific information described in the most recent Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of major psychological tests used to assess personality, ability and aptitude and how this information is used in clinical settings.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations (CLO’s A–E)

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (6)

There will be 6 Discussion Board Forums throughout the term. The purpose of Discussion Board Forums is to generate interaction among students in regard to relevant, current course topics. The student is required to post 1 thread of at least 350 words as well as replies of at least 150 words to 2 other students’ threads. (CLO’s A–E)

Statistics Refresher Assignment

In this assignment, the student will review statistical concepts and practice basic statistical procedures, including frequency, median, mode, range, average and standard deviation, variance, central tendency, variability, graphing, z-scores, and T–scores. A simulated scenario will also be completed in order to demonstrate practical application of statistical data. (CLO’s A–E)

Item Development and Analysis Worksheet

The student will complete a worksheet in order to learn how to perform specific quantitative and qualitative processes and analyses involved in test item creation and evaluation. (CLO’s A, B, D and E)

Test Evaluation Paper

The student will evaluate 1 psychological test that is not covered in the textbook or course lectures. The student will choose his/her test and report on the psychometric properties of the test as well as justify his/her choice. The assignment will be 3–5 pages in length, including a title page and a references page. All elements of the paper should adhere current APA formatting guidelines.
(CLO’s A–E)

PowerPoint Presentation

The student will create a PowerPoint presentation on the Barnum Effect or on how to properly conduct a clinical Psychological Interview. The student must integrate course content and scholarly research into his/her choice of presentation. The student will be graded based on his/her presentation’s content, aesthetics, and adherence to current APA formatting. (CLO’s B, C and E)

LearnSmart Assessments (13)

The student will complete a LearnSmart Assessment for each assigned chapter of reading in the course textbook. These Assessments are an adaptive learning tool utilized as a formative measure of students’ mastery of learning objectives. The LearnSmart Assessments are taken open-book/open-note. (CLO’s A–E).