Fun Quiz Jobseekers Recruitment Firms Employers

This section is intended to give a broad view on psychometric testing and more detailed information on personality testing, as well as on the development process of profiling system.

Click on the paragraph of your choice:

  2. Introduction to Psychometric Testing in General
  3. Personality Testing in Particular
  4. History of Test Development
  5. How is a Test Constructed?
  6. Psychometric Tests – Information for Candidates
  7. Prerequisites and References


Personatests is a personality assessment / profiling tool. It has been developed in Australia from 1985 to 2002 under the name PA2000 and has been tested / validated on 11,000 persons during this period.

PA2000 has been re-branded in 2003 for the launch of the online profiling service at

We have information available to psychologists to explain the development process, the underlying considerations and the validity testing of

Contact Steen Selsoe Petersen by email or phone 1800 11 11 30 (within Australia) for more information.

Back to top...

2. Introduction to Psychometric testing in general

Psychometric testing falls into three main types:

  • Ability testing
  • Aptitude testing
  • Personality testing
One might also be interested in a brief History of Test Development or what to look for in a well designed assessment tool.

Ability testing:

Ability tests measure a persons potential, for instance to learn the skills needed for a new job or to cope with the demands of a training course. Ability tests are not the same thing as Tests of Attainment.

Tests of attainment assess specifically what people have learnt e.g. mathematical ability or typing skills. Of course what people have learned does depend on their ability in that domain in the first place so the scores on the two types of test are conceptually linked.

The major difference between tests of ability and tests of attainment is in the way the scores from both types of test are used. Many ability test items look identical to those on attainment tests but attainment tests are different in one crucial respect - they are retrospective: they focus on what has been learnt and on what a person knows and can do now. Ability tests are prospective: they focus on what the person is capable of achieving in the future or their potential to learn. Bear in mind that some attainment is required before certain abilities can be measured, for instance, we need certain knowledge of mathematics before our numerical ability can be measured. In addition a test of attainment cannot be used to directly infer ability. School examinations are one example of measures of achievement or attainment, and while we might draw some conclusions about an individual's ability on the basis of GCSE results we would not use them as a direct measure of ability since a less able student may work harder than a more able student to produce a better score.

General ability is usually divided up into specific abilities, reflecting the hierarchical structure of intelligence that is generally accepted by most workers in the field. So a general ability test might be composed of specific numerical, verbal and spatial ability scales brought together as a test battery. They can then be scored and interpreted individually as a specific ability or aptitude measure, or together as part of a general ability measure.

Aptitude testing:

There is no widely accepted definition of the difference between ability and aptitude. Most people would agree that to some extent the two terms refer to the same thing: aptitude referring to specific ability, and ability referring to general aptitude. We could probably view ability as underlying aptitude, and aptitude as being more job related then ability. For instance a computer programmer might score highly on a verbal ability test and highly on a programmer aptitude test but not the other way around.

Aptitude tests tend to be job related and have names that include job titles such as the Programmers Aptitude Series (SHL). Ability tests on the other hand are designed to measure the abilities or mental processes that underlie aptitude and are named after them e.g. Spatial Ability - GAT (ASE). We have also mentioned that ability tests can be either general or specific in focus. An ability test such as the General Ability Test (GAT) is made up of four tests of specific ability - numerical ability; verbal ability; non-verbal ability and spatial ability. They can be used separately to assess specific abilities or together to assess general ability. There are tests which measure only general ability such as the Standard Progressive Matrices (which is one of the purest measures of general ability available) and there are tests which only measure specific abilities such as the ACER Mechanical Reasoning Test. You will find with experience that some tests fall into more than one category and that the distinction between the various categories is not always an easy one to define.

Personality testing:

Personality is a term which is commonly used in everyday language but which has been given a particular technical meaning by psychologists. When we discuss personality we must remember that it is not a single independent mechanism but closely related to other human cognitive and emotional systems.

To learn more about personality testing, read our chapter dedicated to personality testing.

Back to top...

3. Personality testing in particular

Before we go onto discuss what exactly personality is it might be useful to just consider what personality is not.

Personality is not the same thing as motivation which is goal directed behaviour designed to satisfy needs, interests and aspirations. Motivation is related to personality in that while personality may represent the way we behave motivation represents the why. Exactly how the underlying motives of behaviour are conceptualised depends very much on the school of thought to which one belongs, for instance a humanist might see the motivation behind behaviour as coming from a desire to achieve ones full potential whereas a psychoanalyst might look for unconscious motivations to do with unfulfilled sexual needs.

Personality is not the same thing as culture which is the values, attitudes and beliefs we share with others about the nature of the world.

Personality is not the same thing as ability (usually held to be synonymous with intelligence) which is the ability to identify, understand and absorb the different components of a problem. Then to identify the way they are related to each other and the logical consequence of these relationships to work out the next step.

A definition of personality

We can define personality as:

Those relatively stable and enduring aspects of an individual which distinguishes them from other people, making them unique, but which at the same time permit a comparison between individuals.

It is more useful to view personality not as something we have but rather as being to do with how we relate to the world, this is something which is rendered explicit in Goodstein and Lanyon's (1975) definition of personality as being -
the enduring characteristics of the person those are significant for interpersonal behaviour.

Within this general definition a number of different theoretical approaches exist:

  • The Psychometric approach (Eysenck and Cattell).
  • The Psychodynamic approach (Freud, Jung, Adler).
  • The Social Learning approach (Mischel, Bandura).
  • The Humanistic approach (Maslow, Rogers).
These approaches to personality are theoretically very different and such a diversity of different theories exist because personality is a hypothetical construct which can never be directly observed but only inferred from behaviour.

Back to top...

4. History of Test Development

Attempts to measure differences between the psychological characteristics of individuals can be traced back to 400 BC when Hippocrates attempted to define four basic temperament types each of which could be accounted for by a predominant body fluid or humour; blood - sanguine (optimistic), black bile - melancholic (depressed), yellow bile - choleric (irritable) and phlegm - phlegmatic (listless and sluggish). Hippocrates' methods and the numerous other attempts that have been made since then were hardly scientific.

The first attempt to scientifically measure the differences between individual mental abilities was made by Sir Francis Galton in the 19th Century who tried to show that the human mind could be systematically mapped into different dimensions. He studied, among other things, how people differed in terms of their ability to discriminate between stimuli and by collating the results he obtained he devised a system which would allow an individual's abilities to be compared to those of others - an idea on which we rely heavily today.

From the work of people like Galton and his French contemporary, Binet, a picture of the human mental domain emerged which saw general human ability as being composed of a number of specific abilities - a view which is still held today. The basic tenet of testing nowadays is based upon the principle of measuring human mental performance under different conditions and then making comparisons between people. Of course, the statistical rigour with which this is done today is much greater than was generally applied in Galton's day. There is a bewildering array of tests available to us measuring anything form hand-eye co-ordination to high level cognitive operations such as spatial reasoning.

Back to top...

5. How is a test constructed?

In it's simplest form a test will have a set of questions or tasks for the subject to complete, these are known as test items.

Unfortunately, the layman associates the everyday use of the word 'test' with an examination which you either pass or fail. In the context of psychological testing the tools used are not generally viewed in this way, usually they are more concerned with describing rather than judging a person's abilities or aptitudes. It is the case however that most lay-people will view the word 'test' with some trepidation and it is difficult to convince them that their abilities or aptitudes are not 'on trial'.

For this reason it is important that you avoid the use of the word test wherever possible; use the term assessment instead and describe the tests themselves as instruments. This becomes especially important in the case of personality assessment which is purely descriptive and where any implication of a good or bad personality or a pass/fail mark on a test can prove seriously damaging to the individual. When we use the word test in this training manual it is in the technical sense and not the everyday sense.

All tests should come with a test manual which will contain information on how to carry out a standardized administration of the instrument as well as its technical specifications. The manual should always be carefully and thoroughly scrutinized before a decision is made on whether or not to use a particular test. The manual should include information about the test's reliability i.e. how stable or consistent a measure the test is, and the strength of its validity i.e. how well it actually measures what it claims to measure. We shall see later that validity depends on reliability and that a test cannot be more valid than it is reliable. The manual should also say something about the nature of the group of people on whom the test was standardized which will allow us to see how a person's performance on a particular test compares with that of other people.

Sometimes information is presented on the performance of more than one type of group - this is because while it would be unfair to compare the performance of a school leaver on a particular test with that of a group of graduates it would not be unfair to compare his performance with that of a group of similar school leavers. Information about the groups with whom the test has been standardized is known as normative information.

The reason we need all of this information is that the type of thing a psychological test measures, such as numerical ability, cannot be directly observed and therefore cannot be directly measured. Something like numerical ability can only be inferred from the behaviour of the individual and as such is a hypothetical construct. For the same reason, exactly how much ability we can infer an individual has in a particular ability domain on the basis of a test score is seldom clear. What is important is that you go beyond the simple appearance of the test items into the technical details of the test construction and rationale. It is unacceptable to simply make a superficial inspection of an instrument's surface characteristics - many of the questionnaires we see in newspapers and magazines with titles such as 'test your word power' or 'how attractive are you to women' seem plausible enough and if presented in an attractively packaged set complete with manual might seem to be highly sophisticated and well designed instruments when in fact they are not and only look as though they are.

Back to top...

6. Psychometric tests – Information for candidates

No other selection procedures generate quite as much anxiety amongst candidates as psychometric tests. Knowing a bit more about these tests and getting the whole issue into perspective can reduce this anxiety. Let's look at some of the questions careers advisers are often asked about tests:

  • What are they?
  • When are they used?
  • Why are they used?
  • How can you prepare for them?

What are they?

Psychometric tests and questionnaires are some of the most commonly used methods in graduate selection worldwide. Recent surveys have shown more than 50% of employers use psychometric measures as part of their selection procedure. These include employers such as the Civil Service, most large banks, many retail chains, accountancy firms and employers in information technology.

Psychometric measures uses in selection are essentially of two types: aptitude tests and personality questionnaires.

Aptitude tests:

  • Vary depending on the particular aptitude the employer is looking for.
  • Most commonly assess your verbal and numerical reasoning.
  • Are usually given under "examination" conditions and in most cases are strictly timed.
  • Verbal and numerical tests are used in selecting graduates for a wide range of jobs including most business and management functions.
  • Diagrammatic reasoning tests are also used for many computing/IT jobs.

Personality questionnaires:

  • Are concerned not with what you can do but how you do things.
  • Have no "right" or "wrong" answers.

Success in a job often depends as much on intelligence. While many employers do not use personality questionnaires to recruit to a particular type, they may look for warning signs to discuss in more detail at an interview. For example, if your responses to a personality questionnaire suggest that you do not take criticism well, you might expect this to raise alarm bells at an interview for a sales job, where coping with rejections is a core requirement. On the other hand, if you fake your answers you may land yourself with a job you hate!

When are they used?

Employers use tests at different stages in the recruitment process. They are sometimes part of a "Screening" procedure: for example, the qualifying tests for the Fast Stream of the Civil Service or the tests used by many employers of trainee computer programmers at pre-selection stage. If they are used at an assessment centre they may play a much smaller part in recruitment decisions, especially if you have performed well in the other exercises.

Why are they used?

They are used because they appear to be more objective than procedures such as an interview. A reliable and well validated test can provide a more accurate indication of future job success in particular tasks. However, a test is usually only one aspect of the selection procedure and there may not be a rigid "pass" mark.

How can you prepare for them?

Many employers now provide candidates with examples of the sorts of questions you may meet in their aptitude tests. Look at these and see if you have become rusty in the use of the skills necessary to give your best performance under timed conditions. For example, with verbal reasoning, you may find word games or similar puzzles give you practice, particularly if you work against the clock.

Numerical reasoning is a stumbling block for many graduates. Often those who would expect to do well because they have studied "numerate" subjects perform poorly on these tests. Over-confidence is often the cause, but others often confuse "numeric" with skills at higher level math’s and underestimate their own skill level. You may genuinely need to brush up your basic mental arithmetic, such as calculating percentages and ratios. Good numeric skills are needed in so many jobs that the effort of brushing up these skills is likely to be repaid. Be warned that calculators are sometimes not allowed!

Points to note:

  • Most aptitude tests used for graduate selection are designed in such a way that most candidates will not complete them. It is normal not to, so don't rush through just to reach the end. Work with "quiet urgency", by not wasting time, and being accurate.
  • A test of thirty items, say, might be designed so that almost everyone gets at least ten right and almost no-one gets more than twenty right. Within the middle zone, the more you can answer correctly the better the score. The effect of getting an extra two or three right can be dramatic, so it’s vital to push yourself to answer those few questions correctly.
  • Aptitude test questions often gradually increase in difficulty so it's best to work on them in order. However, if you're stuck on a question, do skip it but don't lose your place on the answer sheet.
  • Personality measures on the other hand have no right answers. Be yourself; answer fairly and sensibly, but NOT flippantly. Don't try to second guess the aim of the questions.
  • If you want to do yourself justice it is important to arrive at the tests in the best possible physical state! If you've been prescribed drugs that make you drowsy, tell the test administrator.
  • An objective assessment is the first step in preparing for future career success.
  • Develop your own career plan. See how you compare against known success factors identified in the Apollo Profile.
  • Improve your work prospects by knowing your strengths and weaknesses.
  • Find out what training may help you.
  • Gain information and tips to modify your behaviour to be more effective in job interviews, at work and when dealing with others.
  • Invaluable for career changes, getting a job, or preparing for promotion.
  • Develop teamwork and understanding with others you work and live with.

Back to top...

7. Prerequisites and references


1. Individual Differences:

Eysenck, H.J. and Eysenck, M.W. (1985) Personality and individual differences: a natural science approach. Plenum: New York.
Willerman, L. (1979) The Psychology of Individual and Group Differences, San Francisco: Freeman.
Tyler, L.E. (1965.) The psychology of human differences. NY ACC.
Anastasi, A. ( 1958) Differential Psychology. NY Macmillan.
Lubinski, D.J. and Dawis, R.V. (Eds.) (1995). Assessing individual differences in human behavior: new concepts, methods, and findings. Davies-Black, Palo Alto.
Hampson, S.E. and Colman, A.M. (Eds.), (1995). Individual differences and personality. Longman Group, London.
Saklofske, D H and Zeidner, M (Ed). (1995) International handbook of personality and intelligence. Plenum, New York.
Eysenck, M.W. Individual differences: normal and abnormal. Erlbaum, Hove, England.
Jonassen, D H; Grabowski, B L. (Eds). (1993) Handbook of individual differences, learning, and instruction. Erlbaum, Hillsdale, N.J.
Detterman, D. K(Ed). (1993) Individual differences and cognition, Ablex, Norwood, N.J.

2. Tests and Measurements:

Cronbach, L.J. ( 1983.) Fundamentals of psychological testing, NY Harper.
Anastasi, A. (1988) Psychological Testing (6th ed). NY, Macmillan.
Nunnally, J.C., Jr. (1972) Introduction to Psychological Measurement. NY: McGraw-Hill.
Aiken, L. R. ( 1997) Psychological Testing and Assessment (9th Ed.)Boston. Allyn and Bacon.


Buros, O.K. The Mental Measurements Yearbooks.
Third (1949), Fourth (1953), Fifth (1959), Sixth (1965), Seventh (1972), Eight (1978). (and later publications of the Buros institute.) Reviews of almost all published tests.
Tests in Print. The Buros Institute for Mental Measurements, Lincoln, NE. 4th ed. (1994).
Mental Measurements Yearbook The Buros Institute for Mental Measurements, Lincoln, NE. 11th ed. (1992).
Standards for educational and psychological testing. (1985). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
See also the APA answers to Frequenty asked questions about psychological tests.
Wickens, T.D. (1998) Categorical data analysis, 49, 537-558.
Bentler, P.M. & Dudgeon, P. Covariance Structure Analysis: Statistical Practice, Theory, and Directions, 46, 1996.
Butcher, J.N. and Rouse, S.V. (1987) Personality: Individual differences and clinical assessment. 47, 87-111.
Revelle, W. Personality processes , 46, 1995.
Ozer, D. J. & Reise, S. P. Personality assessment, 45, 1994.
Sechrest, L. & Figueredo, A. J., Program Evaluation, 44, 1993.
Arabie, P. & Hubert, L. J. Combinatorial data analysis, 43, 1992.
Wiggins, J. S. & Pincus, A. L. Personality: Structure and Assessment, 43, 1992.
Schmidt, F. L., Ones, D. S., & Hunter, J. E. Personnel selection, 43, 1992.
Widiger, T. A. & Trull, T. J., Diagnosis and clinical assessment, 42, 1991.
Digman, J. M. Personality Structure: emergence of the five-factor model, 41, 1990.
Jones, L. V. & Appelbaum, M. Psychometric methods, 40, 1989.
Gescheider, G. A. Psychophysical scaling, 39, 1988.
Cook, T. D. & Shadish, W. R. Jr. Program evaluation: the worldly science, 37, 1986.
Anastasi, A. Evolving concepts of test validation, 37, 1986.
Hakel, M. D. Personnel selection and placement, 37, 1986.
Robins, L.N. & Helzer, J.E. Diagnosis and clinical assessment: the current state of psychiatric diagnosis, 37, 1986.
Traub, R.E. & Lam, Y.R. Latent Structure and item sampling models for testing. 36, 1985.
Young, F. W. Scaling, 35, 1984.
Lanyon, R.I. Personality Assessment. 35, 1984.
Zedeck, S. and Cascio, W.F. Psychological Issues in Personnel Decisions. 35, 1984.
Rorer, L.G. & Widiger, T.A. Personality Structure and Assessment. 34, 1983.
Eysenck, H.J., Wakefield, J.A., & Friedman, A.F. Diagnosis and Clinical Assessment. 34, 1983.
Weiss, D.J. & Davison, M.L. Test Theory and Methods. 33, 1982.
Wainer, H. and Thissen, D. Graphical Data Analysis, 32, 1981.
Weiss, D.J. and Davison, M.L. Test Theory and Methods. 32, 1981.
Bentler, P.M. Multivariate Analysis with Latent Variables: Causal Modeling. 31, 1980.
Carroll, J.D. and Arabie, P. Multidimensional Scaling. 31, 1980.
Jackson, D.N. and Paunonen, S.V. Personality Structure and Assessment. 31, 1980.
Carroll, J.B. and Maxwell, S.E. Individual Differences in Cognitive Abilities. 30, 1979.
Lumsden, J. Test theory. 27, 1976.
Goldberg, L. Objective diagnostic tests and measures. 25, 1974.
Edwards, A. Personality: Theory and techniques of assessment. 24, 1973
Molish, B. Projective methodologies. 23, 1972.
Bock, R.D. Test Theory. 22, 1971.
Fiske, D.W. and Pearson, P.H. Theory and technique of Personality measurement. 21, 1970.
Wiggins, J. Personality structure. 19, 1968.
Klein, G.S. Barr, H.L. & Wolitzky, D.L. Personality. 18, 1967.
Fisher, S. Projective methologies. 18, 1967.
Holtzman, W.H. Personality Structure. 16, 1965.
Mulholland, J.E. Theory and techniques of assessment. 15, 1964.
Christie, R. and Lindauer, F. Personality structure. 14, 1963.
Messick, S. Personality structure. 12, 1961.
DuBois, P.H., Individual Differences. 11, 1960.
Loevinger, J. Theory and techniques of assessment. 10, 1959.
Kelly, G.A. Theory and techniques of assessment. 9 1958.
Jenkins, J.J. and Lykken, D.T. Individual differences. 8, 1957.
Cronbach, L.J. Assessment of individual differences. 7, 1956.
Kelly, E.L. Theory and technique of assessment. 5, 1954.
Psychological Bulletin (reviews of recent research)
Psychometrika (methodology of psychological measurement)
Applied Psychological Measurement (methodology with some applications)
Multivariate Behavioral Research (methodology with applications)
Journal of Statistics Education is a refereed on-line journal concerning teaching statistics.
Psychological Assessement(analyses of current psychological tests)
B New tests and validity studies
Educational and Psychological Measurement
Journal of Applied Psychology
Journal of Counseling Psychology
Journal of Educational Measurement
Personnel and Guidance Journal
Personnel Psychology
C Theoretical issues in personality theory relevant to personality assessment
Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
Journal of Research in Personality
Personality and Individual Differences
European Journal of Personality
Journal of Personality
Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Psychological Review (theoretical articles)
Lord, F.M. & Novick, M.R.(1968) Statistical theories of mental test scores. Reading, Ma: Addison-Wesley.
Eysenck, H.J. (1970) The structure of human personality (3rd ed.) London:Methuen.
Vernon, P.E. (1963) Personality Assessment: A critical survey. London: Methuen.
Cattell, R.B. (1973) Personality and mood by questionaire. San Francisco, Jossey-Bass.
Cattell, R.B. (1957) Personality and motivation: structure and measurement. Yonkers-on-Hudson: World Book Co.
Cattell, R.B. (1966) Handbook of Multivariate experimental psychology. Chicago: Rand McNally.
Cattell, R.B. and Kline, P.(1977) The Scientific Analysis of Personality and Motivation. London: Academic Press.
Jensen, A.R. (1980) Bias in mental tests. New York: Free Press.
Herrnstein, R. J. & Murray, C. (1994) The bell curve: Intelligence and class structure in American life. Free Press.
Loehlin, J.C. (1994)Latent variable models: an introduction to factor, path, and structural analysis. Hillsdale, N.J.: LEA. (2nd Ed.)
Pervin, LA. (Ed.). (1990a). Handbook of Personality: theory and research. New York: Guilford.
Lowman, R. L (1996) What every psychologist should know about assessment. Psychological Assesment, 8.
Glaser, R. and Bond, L.(1981) Testing: Concepts, Policy, Practice, and Research. American Psychologist, 36.
Green, B.F. A primer of testing. American Psychologist, 1981, 36, 1001-1011.
Carroll, J.B. and Horn, J.L. (1981) On the scientific basis of ability testing. American Psychologist, 36, 1012-1020.
Bias in mental testing. Comments on Jensen. Behavioral and Brain Science, 1981.
Rorer, LG. (1990). Personality Assessment: A Conceptual Survey. In LA Pervin (Ed.), Handbook of personality: Theory and research (pp. 693-720). New York: Guilford.
Cronbach, L.J. (1957) The two disciplines of scientific psychology. American Psychologist, 12, 671-684.
Cronbach, L.J. (1975) Beyond the two disciplines of scientific psychology. American Psychologist, 30, 116-127.
Vale and Vale. (1969) Individual differences and general laws in psychology: a reconciliation. American Psychologist, 24, 1093-1108.
Eysenck, H.J. (1966) Personality and experimental psychology. Bulletin of the British Psychological Society, 19, 1-28.
Eysenck, H.J. (1997)Personnality and experimental psychology: The unification of psychology and the possibility of a paradigm. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 73 , 1224-1237.
Nunnally and Bernstein: Chapter 1, pp. 3-30
Coombs, C. (1964) A Theory of Data. NY: Wiley & Sons, Ch. 1 & 2.
C. Scaling models
Nunnally and Bernstein: Chapter 2, pp. 31-82
Maxwell, S.E. & Delany, H.D. (1985) Measurement and statistics: an examination of construct validity. Psychological Bulletin, 97, 85-93.
Gescheider, G. A. (1988) Psychophysical scaling, Annual Review of Psychology, 39, 169-200.
Young, F. W. (1984) Scaling, Annual Review of Psychology,35, 55-81.
D. Basic concepts: Variance, covariance, and correlation
Nunnally and Bernstein: Chapters 4 & 5, pp. 114-208.
Wiggins: Chapter 1, pp. 7-50
Cohen, J & Cohen, P. (1983) Applied multiple regression/correlation analysis for the behavioral sciences, 2nd ed. Hillsdale, N.J. Erlebaum.
Dawes, R. and Corrigan, B. (1974) Linear models in decsion making. Psychological Bulletin, 81, 95-106.
Nunnally and Bernstein: Chapter 6, pp. 211-247
Gulliksen, H. (1950)Theory of mental tests. NY: Wiley, Chapter 2, pp. 4-27.
Lord, F.M. & Novick, M. R. (1968) Statistical theories of mental test scores. Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA. Chapter 3, pp. 55-81.
Nunnally and Bernstein: Chapter 7, pp. 248-92.
Wiggins: Chapter 7, pp. 277-327.
Cronbach, L.J. (1951) Coefficient alpha and the internal structure of tests. Psychometrika, 16, 297-334.
Revelle, W. (1979) Hierarchical cluster analysis and the internal structure of tests. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 14, 57-74.
Tryon, R.C. (1957) Reliability and behavior domain validity: Reformulation and historical critique. Psychological Bulletin., 54, 229-249.
Cronbach, L.J. et al. (1963) A liberalization of reliability theory. British Journal of Statistical Psychology, 16, 137-163.
Cronbach, L.J., Gleser, G.C., Nanda, H. & Rajaratnam, N. (1972) The dependability of behavioral measurements: theory of generalizability for scores and profiles, NY: Wiley.
Embretson, S.E. (1996) The new rules of measurement. Psychological Assessment, 8.
Reckase, M.D. (1996) Test construction in the 1990s: Recent approaches every psychologist should know. Psychological Assessment, 8.
Rasch, Georg (1960/1980) Probabilistic models for some intelligence and attainment tests. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Traub, R.E. & Lam, Y.R. (1985) Latent Structure and item sampling models for testing. Annual Review of Psychology, 36.
Weiss, D.J. and Davison, M.L. (1981) Test Theory and Methods. Annual Review of Psychology, 32,1.
Lumsden, J. Test theory. (1976) Annual Review of Psychology ,27.
Lord, F.M. (1980) Application of item repsonse theory to practical testing problems. Hillsdale, N.J.: Erlbaum.
Hulin, C. L., Drasgow, F. & Parsons, C.K. (1983) Item response theory: application to psychological measurement. Homewood,Il: Dow Jones-Irwin.
Birnbaum, A. (1968) Some latent trait models and their use in inferring an examinee's ability. In F. M. Lord and M. R. Novick, Statistical theories of mental test scores. Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA.
Andrich, D. (1978) Relationships between the Thurstone and Rasch approaches to item scaling. Applied Psychological Measurement, 2, 449-460.
Wainer, H., Fairbank, D.T. & Hough, R.L.(1978) Predicting the impact of simple and compound life change events. Applied Psychological Measurement, 2, 311-320.
Waller, N. G., Tellegen, A., McDonald, R. P., & Lykken, D. T. (1996). Exploring nonlinear models in personality assessment: Development and preliminary validation of a Negative Emotionality scale. Journal of Personality, 64, 545-576.
Nunnally and Bernstein: Chapter 3, pp. 83-113.
American Psychological Association. (1985) Standards for educational and psychological tests and manuals. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association.
Cronbach, L.J. and Meehl, P.E.(1955) Construct validity in psychological tests. Psychological Bulletin, 52, 281-302.
Loevinger, J. (1957) Objective tests as instruments of psychological theory. Psychological Reports, 3, 635-694. Monograph Supplement 9.
Campbell, D.T. and Fiske, D.W. (1959) Convergent and discriminant validation by the multitrait-multimethod matrix. Psychological Bulletin, 56, 81-105.
Bechtoldt, H.P. (1959) Construct validity: A critique. American Psychologist, 14 , 619-629.
Campbell, D.T. (1960) Recommendations for APA test standards regarding construct, trait, and discriminant validity. American Psychologist, 15, 546-533.
Cureton, E.E. (1950) Validity, reliability, and boloney. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 10, 94-96.
Mosier, C.I. (1951) Problems and designs of cross validation. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 11, 5-11.
Cureton, E E., Cronbach, Lee J.,Meehl, Paul E, Ebel, Robert L. et al. (1996) in Ward, Stoker, Murray-Ward (Eds.) Educational measurement: Origins, theories, and explications, Vol. 1: pp. 125-243,University Press of America, Lanham, MD.
4. Validity for what? Predictions and decision making.
Wiggins: Chapters 2, 3, 6, pp. 51-80, 224-227.
Sechrest, L. (1963) Incremental validity. Educational and Psychological
Norman, W.T. (1963) Personality measurement, faking and detection: an assessment method for use in personnel selection. Journal of Applied Psychology, 47, 225-241.
Clinical versus actuarial decision making
Dawes, R.M. Faust, D. & Meehl, P. (1989) Clinical versus actuarial judgment Science, 243, 1668-1674.
Dawes, R.M.
Cleary, T.A., Humphreys, L.G., Kendrick, S.A., & Wesmer, A. (1975) Educational uses of tests with disadvantaged students. American Psychologist, 30, 15-41.
Cole, N.S. (1981) Bias in testing. American Psychologist, 36, 1067-1077.
Flaugher, R.L. (1978) The many definitions of test bias. American Psychologist, 33, 671-679.
Jensen, A.R. (1980) Bias in mental tests. New York: Free Press.
Anastasi, A. (1986) Evolving concepts of test validation, Annual Review of Psychology, 37.
Bentler, P.M. & Dudgeon, P. Covariance Structure Analysis: Statistical Practice, Theory, and Directions, 46, 1996.
Bentler, P.M. (1980) Multivariate analysis with latent variables: causal modeling. Annual Review of Psychology, 31, 419-456.
Joreskog, K.G. (1978) Structural analysis of covariance and correlation matrices. Psychometrika, 43, 443-478.
Cole DA, Martin JM, Powers B, Truglio R (1996) Modeling causal relations between academic and social competence and depression: A multitrait-multimethod longitudinal study of children Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 105,. 258-270.
liff, Norman (1983) Some cautions concerning the application of causal modeling methods Multivariate Behavioral Research. Vol 18 115-126.
Martin, J.A. (1982) Application of structural modeling with latent variables to adolescent drug use: a reply to Huba, Wingard, and Bentler. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 43, 598-603.
Huba, G.J. and Bentler, P.M. (1982) On the usefulness of latent variable causal modeling in testing theories of naturally occuring events (including adolescent drug use): a rejoinder to Martin. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 43, 604-611.
Nunnally and Bernstein: Chapter 8, pp. 293-337
Gulliksen, H. (1950) Theory of mental tests, NY: Wiley. Chapter 21.
Sechrest, L., & Jackson, D.N. (1963) Deviant response tendencies: their measurement and interpretation. Educational and Psychological Measurement.
Nunnally and Bernstein: Chapter 9,10 pp338-443 --recent advances in measurement
Loevinger, J. Gleser, G.C. & Dubois, P.H. (1953) Maximizing the discriminating power of a multiple score test. Psychometrika, 18, 309-317.
Johnson, S.C. (1967) Hierarchical clustering systems. Psychometrika, 32, 241-254.
Revelle, W. (1979) Hierarchical cluster analysis and the internal structure of tests. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 14, 57-74
Revelle, W. (1978) Hierarchical cluster analysis: A warning and several suggestions. (unpublished manuscript, Northwestern University)
Nunnally and Bernstein: Chapters 11& 12, pp. 447-541.
Loehlin, John (1987/1992) Latent Variable Models: an introduction to factor, path, and structural analysis . Hillsdale, N.J.: LEA. (reserve)
Thurstone, L.L. The factor problem. (J & M, pp. 279-287)
Eysenck, H.J. (1953) The logical basis of factor analysis. American Psychologist , 8, 105-134.
Cattell, R.B. (1952) The three basic factor analytic research designs--their interrelations and derivatives. Psychological Bulletin,
Royce, J.R. (1963) Factors as theoretical constructs. American Psychologist, 18, 522-528.
Revelle, W. (1983). Factors are fictions and other comments on individuality theory. Journal of Personality, 51, 707-714.
Guilford, J.P. (1952) When not to factor analyze. Psychological Bulletin, .
Tucker, L.R. (1955) The objective definition of simple structure in linear factor analysis. Psychometrika, 1955.
Joreskog, K.G. (1967) Some contributions to maximum likelihood factor analysis.Psychometrika, 32, 443-482.
Harmon, H.H. (1967) Factor Analysis. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
Mulaik, S.A. (1972) The Foundation of Factor Analysis. NY: McGraw-Hill.
Gorsuch, R.L. (1974) Factor Analysis. Philadelphia: Sauders.
Lawley, D.N. & Maxwell, A.E. (1971) Factor Analysis as a Statistical Method. (2nd ed.). NY: American Elsevier.
Joreskog, K. and Sorbom, D. (1979) Advances in Factor Analysis and Structural Equation Models. Cambridge: Abt.
Revelle, W. and Rocklin, T. (1979) Very simple structure: an alternative procedure for estimating the optimal number of interpretable factors. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 14, 403-414.
Cattell, R. B. (1978) The scientific use of factor analysis in behavioral and life sciences. New York. Plenum.
Nunnally and Bernstein: Chapter 13 pp 542-594
D) Other models
Nunnally and Bernstein: Chapter 14 pp 595-651
Cliff, Norman. (1996) Ordinal methods for behavioral data analysis. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc; Mahwah, NJ, US; xiii, 197 pp.
Cliff, Norman (1987) Analyzing multivariate data. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc; San Diego, CA, US; xxiv, 494 pp.
Jackson, D.N. & Messick, S.J. (1958) Content and style in personality measurement. Psychological Bulletin, 55, 243-252.
Rorer, L.G. (1965) The great response style myth. Psychological Bulletin, 63, 129-150.
Campbell, D.T. Siegman, C.R., & Rees, M.R. (1967) Direction of wording effects in the relationships between scales. Psychological Bulletin, 68, 293-303.
Block, J. (1965) The Challenge of Response Sets. NY: Appleton-Century-Crofts.
Hamilton, D. (1967) Extreme Response Set, Psychological Bulletin, .
4. A comparison of alternative techniques for test construction
Goldberg, L.R. (1972) Parameters of personality inventory construction and utilization: A comparison of prediction strategies and tactics. Multivariate Behavioral Research Monographs, 7, No. 2.
Nunnally: Chapters 13-15, pp. 501-626.
Allport, G.W. (1961) Pattern and Growth in Personality. NY: Holt-Rinehart, and Winston, Chapter 14, The theory of common traits.
Norman, W.T. (1963) Toward an adequate taxonomy of personality attributes: Replicated factor structure in peer nomination personality ratings. Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 1963, 66, 574-583.
Digman, J.M. (1990) Personality Structure: emergence of the five-factor model,.Annual Review of Psychology, 41.
Meehl, P. (1992) Factors and Taxa, traits and types, differences of degree and differences of kind. Journal of Personality, 60, 117-
Mccrae, R. R., & Costa, P. T. (1987). Validation of the 5-factor model of personality across instruments and observers. Journal Of Personality And Social Psychology, 0052, 0081-0090.
McCrae, R. R. & John, O. P. (1992) An introduction to the five factor model and its appliations, Journal of Personality, 60, 175-.
John, O.P. (1990). The "Big Five" factor taxonomy: Dimensions of personality in the natural language and in questionnaires. In LA Pervin (Eds.), Handbook of personality: Theory and research . New York: Guilford. (See also Big 5 references)
B. Traits: Dimensions of personality or verbal habits?
Mischel, W. (1969) Continuity and change in personality. American Psychologist, 24, 1012-1018.
Mulaik, S.A. (1964) Are personality factors raters' conceptual factors? Journal of Consulting Psychology, 28, 506-611.
Passini, F.T., & Norman, W.T. (1966) A universal conception of personality structure? Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 4, 44-49.
Norman, W.T. & Goldberg, L.R. (1966) Raters, ratees, and randomness in personality structure. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 4, 681-691.
Romer, D., & Revelle, W. (1984). Personality traits: facts or fiction? A critique of the Shweder and D'Andrade systematic distortion hypothesis. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 47, 1028-1042.
Buss, D.M. & Craik, K.H. (1983) The act frequency approach to personality. Psychological Review, 90, 105-126.
Block, J. (1989) Critique of the act frequency approach to personality. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 50, 234-245.
See also an abbreviated reading list describing the "Big 5" or "Five Factor Model" as well as an abbreviated reading list describing the "Even Bigger 3 fundamental" dimensions or taxonometric theories of by Peter Heineman.
Green, B.F. (1978) In defense of measurement. American Psychologist, 33, 664-670.
Mischel, W. (1977) On the future of personality measurement. American Psychologist, 32, 246-254.
Hogan, R. DeSota, C.B., & Solano, C. (1977) Traits, tests and personality research. American Psychologist, 32, 255-264.
Block, J. (1977) Recognizing the coherence of personality. In Magnusson, D. & Endler, N. Personality at the Crossroads. NY: Wiley.
Epstein, S. (1980) The stability of behavior: II. Implications for psychological research. American Psychologist, 35, 790-806.
Conley, J.J. (1984) The hierarchy of consistency: a review and model of longitudinal findings on adult individual differences in intelligence, personality, and self-opinion. Personality and Individual Differences, 5, 11-26.
Conley, J.J. (1984) Longitudinal consistency of adult personality: self-reported psychological characteristics across 45 years. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 37, 1325-1333.
Tellegen, A., Bouchard, T. (1990) Genetic basis of personality traits. Science, .
Buss, A.
Calder, B.J. & Ross, M. (1973) Attitudes and Behavior. Morristown, N.J.: General Learning Press.
Calder, B.J., Phillips, L. W; Tybout, A. M. (1982) The concept of external validity Journal of Consumer Research. Vol 9(3) 240-244.
Cook, T.M. (1969) The relationship between the affective, behavioral, and cognitive components of attitudes. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 5, 12-30.
Bagozzi, R.P. (1978) The construct validity of the affective, behavioral, and cognitive components of attitudes by analysis of covariance structures. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 13, 9-31.
Schuman, H. & Johnson, H.P. (1976) Attitudes and Behavior. Annual Review of Sociology, 2, 161-207.
B. Measurement Techniques
Cook, S. & Selltiz, C. A multiple-indicator approach to attitude measurement. Psychological Bulletin,
Tittle, C.R. & Hill, R.J. (1967) Attitude Measurement and the prediction of behavior. Sociometry, 30, 199-213.
Kidder, L.H. & Campbell, D.T. (1970) The indirect testing of social attitudes. In G.F. Summers (Ed.) Attitude Measurement.
VI. Methods of observation of behavior
A. Unobtrusive measures
Webb, E.J. et al. (1966) Unobtrusive Measures. Chicago: Rand McNally.
B. Peer ratings
Wiggins: Chapters 7, 8, 9, 11, 278-442, 515-604.
Guilford, J.P. (1954) Psychometric Methods. NY: McGraw-Hill, Chapter11, rating scales, pp. 263-301.
Robinson, J. P., Shaver, P. R., and Wrightsman, L.S.(1991) Measures of personality and social psychological attitudes. Academic Press, San Diego.
Cattell, R. B. & Warburton, F. W. (1967) Objective personality and motivation tests. a theoretical introduction and practical compendium. Champaign, University of Illinois Press.
Kelly, G. A. (1955) The psychology of personal constructs. Norton.
Wish, M. Deutsch, M., & Biener, L. (1972) Differences in perceived similarity of nations. In Romney, et al. Multidimensional scaling, Vol. 2.
Atkinson, J. W., Bongort, K. & Price, L. H. (1977), Explorations using computer simulations to comprehend thematic apperceptive measurement of motivation. Motivation and Emotion, 1, 1-26.
McClelland, D. C. (1989) American Psychologist.
Wiggins: Chapters 4, 5, 122-223 sources of data versus data combination
Faust D, Ziskin J (1988) The expert witness in psychology and psychiatry. Science 241: 31-35.
Dawes RM, Faust D, Meehl PE. (1989) Clinical versus actuarial judgment.Science 243: 1668-1674.
Norman, W.T. "To see oursels as ithers see us!" Relations among self-perceptions, peer-perceptions, and expected peer-perceptions of personality attributes. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 1969, 4, 417-443.
Eysenck, H. J. and Eysenck, M. W. (1985) Personality and Individual differences: a natural science approach.
Digman, J. M. Personality Structure: emergence of the five-factor model, 41, 1990.
John, O.P. (1990). The "Big Five" factor taxonomy: Dimensions of personality in the natural language and in questionnaires. In LA Pervin (Eds.), Handbook of personality: Theory and research . New York: Guilford. (See also Big 5 references)
Wiggins, J. Milestones in assessment.
Dawes, R.M. Faust, D. & Meehl, P. (1989) Clinical versus actuarial judgment Science, 243, 1668-1674

Back to top...

© Personatests 2000-2004