Author: Sumaya Laher

HPCSA Policy Guidelines

HPCSA Policy Guidelines (Ethical rules, classification of psychometric tests, undesirable business practice, exam policy, exam guidelines)

Mock questions for Psychometrics (these are not questions from past papers and are by no means exhaustive but will provide some practice for the exam)

Sample: Registered Counsellor Exam (this is not a document from the HPCSA. A previous student has placed this as a sample on his website)

Collated material for HPCSA Registered Counsellor Exam (this may be outdated and is not verified)

Psychometrics Practice Questions

1. Briefly discuss the difference between psychological testing and psychological assessment.

2. Describe how the following has impacted on psychological test use and development in South Africa:

  • Apartheid
  • The Employment Equity Act

3. Briefly discuss what norms are and what they do

4. List four of the most common types of norm scores found in psychometric assessments

5. Explain what a percentile score is

6. What is a z-score in the context of norming for psychological tests

7. Briefly discuss what is meant by a deviation IQ scale

8. The Employment Equity Act stipulates three conditions for psychological testing in South Africa. Identify the three conditions and briefly discuss why these conditions were legislated in South Africa.

9. What is meant by reliability in psychometrics?

10. Identify and define the four types of reliability that should be considered when developing or using tests.

11. Name two coefficients that can be used to assess internal consistency (inter-item consistency) reliability.

12. Will it be appropriate to calculate inter-scorer reliability on the NEO-PI-R? Substantiate your answer.

13. Identify and briefly discuss three factors that may influence the reliability of a test and what can be done to overcome these factors to improve reliability.

14. Explain what is meant by the concept “standard error of measurement.”

15. If a measure has a standard error of measurement is 4 and a person’s observed score is 15, what can you deduce about the person’s true score?

16. What is meant by validity in psychometrics?

17. Identify and define the four types of reliability that should be considered when developing or using tests.

18. Briefly explain three ways in which the construct validity of an instrument might be established.

19. What is a validity coefficient?

20. Identify and distinguish between the two subtypes of criterion validity.

21. Identify and briefly discuss three factors that may influence the validity of a test and what can be done to overcome these factors to improve validity.

22. Distinguish between the concepts of bias and fairness as they used within psychometrics.

23. What aspects in the testing process can be identified as:

  • Construct bias
  • Method bias
  • Item bias

24. What is meant by the term “response bias”?

25. Identify and discuss two common types of response biases commonly found in psychological assessments

26. Identify the three commonly cited criteria which are used for item selection when developing tests.

27. What is meant by the term response format?

28. Identify and briefly discuss three potential test response formats focusing on the advantages and disadvantages of each.

29. Briefly discuss the difference between statistical and clinical significance

30. Identify two methods that are used for detecting differential item functioning.

31. Why do we need to translate or adapt measures in the South African context?

32. Why are norms used?

33. Which body is responsible for the classification and oversight of psychological tests in South Africa?

34. What are the two major functions of the HPCSA?

35. Briefly explain what is meant by the classification of psychological measures.

36. Explain what is meant by the following terms:

  • Test wiseness
  • Culture fair
  • Culture free
  • Culture reduced
  • Culture loaded
  • Acculturation
  • Culture
  • Computerized testing
  • Online testing
  • Etic tests
  • Emic tests
  • Pseudo-etic tests
  • Test standardization
  • Test adaptation
  • Test translation

37. What is meant by adaptability testing as used by Simon Biesheuvel in the 1940’s?

38. Explain the following statement: “psychological assessment is under statutory control.”

39. List the professionals who may use psychological tests in south Africa as well as their qualifications and the restrictions placed on their use of the tests.

40. Briefly discuss the scope of practice for a psychometrist in independent practice.

41. Briefly discuss why it is important for psychologists to have a good working knowledge of the Mental Health Act, Act 17 of 2002.

42. Briefly discuss why it is important for psychologists to have a good working knowledge of the Health Professions Act, Act 56 of 1974 and subsequent ammendments.

43. Explain what is meant by:

  • informed consent,
  • confidentiality,
  • the right to feedback

in the context of psychological assessment.

44. What is meant by rapport in the context of psychological assessment?

1. Identify the steps to be followed in the development of a psychological test. Briefly discuss these steps and reflect on some of the challenges involved in this process

2. Translating of tests is not always easy particularly in the South African context. Briefly discuss the procedure involved in translating a test and reflect on some of the challenges involved in this process.

3. Identify and discuss some of the major pitfalls (historical and current) associated with using psychological measures in the South African context

4. The Health Professions Act, Act 56 of 1974, defines specific criteria related to psychological assessment. Identify and briefly discuss these criteria.

5. Define and briefly discuss what is meant by fair and ethical assessment practices as set out in the ITC International Guidelines for Test Use.

6. Based on the Ethical Code of Conduct document for psychologists, identify and discuss the practices that assessment practitioners should follow.

7. According to the ITC International Guidelines for Test Use, there are several aspects that a policy on testing needs to cover. Identify and briefly discuss six of these reflecting on what the challenges might be in the South African context for undertaking these actions.

8. There are 5 models of ensuring fairness in assessment that are discussed in the literature. Identify and critically these models.

9. Briefly discuss why it is important for psychologists to have a good working knowledge of Chapter 2 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa. In your argument make reference to the key aspects highlighted in Chapter 2.

10. Identify and discuss five factors that influence the use of psychological testing in South Africa.

8. What is standardization in the context of psychological assessment?

9. Why do we standardize tests?

16. What is meant by the term response format?

22. Explain the following statement: “psychological assessment is under statutory control.”

23. Briefly discuss the scope of practice for a psychometrist in independent practice.

25. Why should a psychologist or psychometrist have a working knowledge of:

  • The Child Justice Act
  • The Schools Act
  • The Criminal Procedures Act

27. There are three conditions under which informed consent is not necessary but recommended. What are these?

28. What is meant by rapport in the context of psychological assessment?

29. Identify and briefly discuss the theory/ies underlying the following tests:

  • WAIS-III
  • RPM
  • ART
  • SAWAIS
  • KAUFMAN
  • CAS
  • 16-PF SA92
  • MBTI
  • BTI
  • MCMI-III
  • DAP
  • TAT
  • SDS
  • MB-10
  • MSCI

30. What are the advantages and disadvantages of online based testing?

31. What are the advantages and disadvantages of paper-and-pencil testing?

32. Distinguish between:

  • Verbal and non-verbal intelligence
  • Fluid and crystallised intelligence
  • Structured and projective personality assessment

34. Identify and discuss the four main approaches that underlie career counseling assessment.

35. What is dynamic assessment?

36. Why is dynamic assessment useful in the South African context?

37. What is school readiness assessment?

38. If you were asked to conduct a school readiness assessment, you would need to assess a child’s functioning in three broad areas. What are these?

39. What is competency assessment?

40. What is an assessment centre?

41. Besides tests, what other techniques are commonly used in organizational settings to assess individuals?

Legislation, ethics and scope of practice documents for psychologists, registered counsellors and psychometrists

The HPCSA requires that all psychologists, psychometrists and registered counsellors be familiar with the following documents:

Industrial Psychology                       

Research Psychology     study material

Educational Psychology

Clinical  Psychology

Counselling Psychology

Psychometrists

Registered Consellor

NEO-PI-R & FFM REFERENCES

NEO-PI-R & FFM REFERENCES

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Allik, J., Mottus, R., Realo, A., Pullmann, H., Trifonova, A., McCrae, R. R., Meshcheryakov, B. G. & 54 members of the Russian Character and Personality Survey. (2009). How national character is constructed: Personality traits attributed to the typical Russian. Psychological Journal of International University of Nature, Society and Human “Dubna”, 1, 1-23.

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Costa, P. T., Jr., Terracciano, A. & McCrae, R. R. (2001). Gender differences in personality traits across cultures: Robust and surprising findings. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 81, 322-331.

Costa, P. T., Jr. & Widiger, T. A. (2002). Personality disorders and the Five-Factor Model of personality. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

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Heaven, P. C. & Pretorius, A. (1998). Personality structure among Black and White South Africans. The Journal of Social Psychology, 138, 664-666.

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Heuchert, J. W. P., Parker, W. D., Stumpf, H. & Myburgh, C. P. H. (2000). The Five-Factor Model of personality in South African college students. American Behavioral Scientist, 44, 112-125.

Higgins, E. T. (2008). Culture and personality: Variability across universal motives as the missing link. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 2, 608-634.

Hofstede, G. & McCrae, R. R. (2004). Personality and culture revisited: Linking traits and dimensions of culture. Cross-Cultural Research, 38, 52-88.

Horn, B. S. (2000). A Xhosa translation of the revised Neo Personality Inventory: A pilot study. Unpublished master’s dissertation (Counselling Psychology). University of Port Elizabeth, South Africa.

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Laher, S. (2008). Structural equivalence and the NEO-PI-R: Implications for the applicability of the Five Factor Model of personality in an African context. South African Journal of Industrial Psychology, 34, 76-80.

Laher, S. (2010). Exploring the relationship between religious orientation and the Five Factor Model of personality in a sample of university students. New Voices in Psychology, 6, 4-22.

Laher, S. (2010, August). Personality theory and assessment research in South Africa: A review. Paper presented at the 16th South African Psychology Congress, International Convention Centre, Durban, South Africa.

Teferi, T.B. & Laher, S. (in press). Exploring the reliability and validity of a Tigrignan translation of the NEO-PI-R in an Eritrean sample. IFE Psychologia.

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Laher, S. & Quy, G. (2009). Exploring the role of spirituality in the context of the Five Factor Model of personality in a South African sample. Journal of Psychology in Africa, 19(4), 513-521.

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McCrae, R. R. (2001). Trait psychology and culture: Exploring intercultural comparisons. Journal of Personality, 69, 819-846.

McCrae, R. R. (2002). NEO-PI-R data from 36 cultures: Further intercultural comparison. In R. R. McCrae & J. Allik. (Eds.), The Five-Factor Model of personality across cultures (pp. 105-125). New York: Kluwer Academic/Plenum.

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McCrae, R. R. (2009). Personality profiles of cultures: Patterns of ethos. European Journal of Personality, 23, 205-227.

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Pervin, L. A. & John, O. P. (2001). Personality: Theory and research (8th ed.). New York: Wiley.

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