Test User Qualification Levels

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All reputable test publishers require test purchasers to complete a form specifying the credentials that qualify them to use the testing materials they wish to buy and certifying that the materials will be used in accordance with all applicable ethical and legal guidelines. Although the number of levels and the specific credentials required at each level differ among publishers, their qualification criteria are typically organized into at least three tiers, based roughly on a categorization of tests and training requirements originally outlined by the American Psychological Association (APA; 1953, 1954).

Lowest Tier (Level A) Intermediate Tier (Level B) Highest Tier (Level C)

Type of instruments to which this level applies

Kinds of credentials or requirements necessary to purchase materials at this level

A limited range of instruments, such as educational achievement tests, that can be administered, scored, and interpreted without specialized training, by following the instructions in their manuals.

Some publishers do not require any credentials to purchase tests at this level. Others may require a bachelor's degree in an appropriate field or that orders for materials be placed through an agency or institution, or both.

Tools that call for some specialized training in test construction and use and in the area in which the instruments will be applied, such as aptitude tests and personality inventories applicable to normal populations. Test purchasers usually must have either a Masters-level degree in psychology (or in a related field), or course work in testing and assessment commensurate with the requirements for using the instruments in question.

Instruments that require extensive familiarity with testing and assessment principles, as well as with the psychological fields to which the instruments pertain, such as individual intelligence tests and projective techniques. Test purchasers must have the kind of advanced training and supervised experience that is acquired in the course of obtaining a doctoral degree, or professional licensure in a field pertinent to the intended use of the instruments, or both.

that the field has traditionally had, there now is a large number of on-line and electronic media resources that are easily accessible.

Internet Resources

For the person who seeks information about psychological tests, a good starting point is the Testing and Assessment section of the APA's Web site (http://www .apa.org). Within this section, among other things, there is an excellent article on "FAQ/Finding Information About Psychological Tests" (APA, 2003) that provides guidance on how to locate published and unpublished tests as well as important documents relevant to psychological testing. Published tests are commercially available through a test publisher, although they sometimes go out of print as books do. Unpublished tests have to be obtained directly from the individual investigator who created them, unless they appear in the periodical literature or in specialized directories (discussed shortly).

Two other great entry points on the Internet, for those who seek information about a specific test, are (a) the Buros Institute of Mental Measurements (BI) Test Reviews Online Web page (http://www.unl.edu/buros), which offers free information on nearly 4,000 commercially available tests as well as more than 2,000 test reviews that can be purchased and displayed online; and (b) the Educational Testing Service (ETS) Test Collection database (at http://www.ets.org/testcoll/ index.html), which is the largest of its kind in the world. In addition, the Educational Resources Information Center (ERIC) system Web site (http://eric.ed .gov)—funded by the U.S. Department of Education—contains a wealth of materials related to psychological testing.

Another way to obtain information about both published and unpublished tests online is through the electronic indexes of the periodical literature in psychology, education, or business. The PsycINFO database of the APA, available through many libraries or by subscription, provides an entry point at which to use the name of a test to find bibliographic references, abstracts, and even full text of articles about it. In addition to exact titles, PsycINFO and other


One of the most basic distinctions among tests concerns whether they are published.

• Published tests are commercially available through test publishers.

• Unpublished tests must be obtained from the individual investigator who developed them, from special directories of unpublished measures, or from the periodical literature.

databases also can be searched by subjects, keywords, and authors, which makes them especially useful when only partial information is available.

Once a test is located through any of these resources, one can usually also determine whether it is published and how it can be obtained. If the test is published, it may be ordered from the company that publishes it by those who meet the qualifications to use it. Ordering information is available in the publishers' catalogs, many of which are now available online as well as in printed form. The ATP Web site (http://www.testpublishers.org) has links to many test publishers and providers of assessment services. Internet addresses for all of the organizations mentioned in this section, and other important sources of information on tests, can be found in Rapid Reference 1.8.

=Rap/dReference 18

Internet Sources of Information on Psychological Tests

Organization (Acronym)


American Educational Research


Association (AERA)

American Psychological Association



Association ofTest Publishers (ATP)


Buros Institute of Mental Measurements



Educational Resources Information


Center (ERIC)

Educational Testing Service (ETS)


International Test Commission (ITC)


National Council on Measurement in


Education (NCME)


Appendix A lists all of the commercially available, published tests and psychological assessment instruments mentioned throughout this book, along with codes identifying their publishers.

Appendix B provides current Internet addresses for the publishers listed in Appendix A. More detailed information on test publishers, including street addresses and telephone numbers, is available in the latest edition of Tests in Print (Murphy, Plake, Impara, & Spies, 2002).

Print Resources

Published Tests

As far as commercially available, published tests are concerned, the most important sources of information stem from the Buros Institute of Mental Measurements (BI) in Lincoln, Nebraska. In particular, the BI (http://www.unl.edu/ buros) produces two series of volumes that can guide users to almost every published test available in the United States. One of these is the Tests in Print (TIP) series and the other is the Mental Measurements Yearbook (MMY ) series. Tests in Print is a comprehensive bibliography of all tests that are commercially available at the time a given volume of the series is published. Each entry has the test title, acronym, author, publisher, publication date, and other basic information about the test as well as cross-references to the reviews of the test in all the MMYs available at that point. In addition, the TIP series contains an extremely useful classified index of tests that are in print, as well as indexes of test scores, publishers, acronyms, and names of authors and reviewers. The MMY series, in turn, goes back to 1938, when the late Oscar Buros published the first yearbook to assist test users by providing evaluative test reviews written by qualified and independent professionals. Although the MMYs are still published in book form, their entries and reviews are also available online and in other electronic media. The Buros Institute also publishes many other test-related materials.

PRO-ED (http://www.proedinc.com) is the publisher of Tests, a series of encyclopedic volumes listing short descriptions of instruments in psychology, education, and business. The Test Critiques series, dating back to 1984, is the companion to Tests. Each volume in this series contains test reviews and cumulative indexes to all its previous volumes.

Unpublished Tests

The goal of behavioral scientists who use psychological tests is to investigate psychological constructs as well as individual and group differences. Many existing tests are used exclusively for scientific research and are not commercially available. These tests are referred to as unpublished measures because they cannot be purchased; conditions for their use are typically established by the authors of each instrument and most often require a letter requesting permission to use them. Information about unpublished tests—and often the instruments themselves—is available in the periodical literature in psychology (e.g., through PsycINFO online) and in various directories (e.g., Goldman, Mitchell, & Egelson, 1997; Robinson, Shaver, & Wrightsman, 1991). The previously mentioned article "FAQ/ Finding Information About Psychological Tests" (APA, 2003) lists several print and electronic resources for information on unpublished tests.

m test yourself


Which of the following is not an essential element of psychological


(a) Systematic procedures

(b) The use of empirically derived standards

(c) Preestablished rules for scoring

(d) Sampling behavior from affective domains


The single most important source of criteria for evaluating tests, testing

practices, and the effects of test use can be found in the

(a) Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct.

(b) Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing.

(c) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

(d) Report of the Task Force on Test User Qualifications.


The earliest antecedents of modern testing for personnel selection date

back to

(a) China, b.c.e.

(b) ancient Greece.

(c) the Inca empire.

(d) Medieval Europe.


Evaluating psychological tests is least problematic

(a) prior to their being placed into use.

(b) once they have been placed into use.


Compared to the other areas listed, the development of criteria or bases

for decision making has been substantially slower in the context of

(a) educational assessment.

(b) occupational assessment.

(c) clinical assessment.


Credit for devising the first successful psychological test in the modern

era is usually given to

(a) Francis Galton.

(b) Alfred Binet.

(c) James McKeen Cattell.

(d) Wilhelm Wundt.

7. The true ratio IQ or intelligence quotient was derived by

(a) adding the mental age (MA) and the chronological age (CA) of the test taker.

(b) subtracting the CA from the MA and multiplying the result by 100.

(c) dividing the CA by the MA and multiplying the result by 100.

(d) dividing the MA by the CA and multiplying the result by 100.

8. The primary purpose for which psychological tests are currently used is

(a) psychological research.

(b) educational research.

(c) decision making.

(d) self-understanding and personal development.

9. Compared to psychological testing, psychological assessment is generally

(b) more structured.

(c) more expensive.

(d) more objective.

10. Which of the following would be the best source of information on a test that is not commercially available?

(a) Mental Measurements Yearbooks

(b) Test Critiques

(c) Tests in Print

(d) PsycINFO

Answers:!. d;2. b; 3.a;4. a; 5. c; 6. b; 7.d; 8. c; 9.c; 10.d

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  • prisca
    What are the APA conditions for psychological testing?
    9 years ago
  • Veneranda
    What are level A,B, C psychological tests means?
    9 years ago
  • fnan
    Which of thefollowing is not an essential element of psychological testing?
    7 months ago
    What are Psychological Assessment Level A test?
    6 months ago
  • Philipp
    Who and how to purchase psychological testing?
    4 months ago
  • ermenegildo
    Who can run level c tests in psychology?
    4 months ago

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