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Chapter 24: Projective Assessment of Adults and Children in South Africa

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Chapter 31: The IAC approach to assessment: A family consultation model of child assessment


ABSTRACT: Innovative assessment procedures which take into account contextual factors such as language, culture, education, socio-economic status and recent educational policy developments are needed in South Africa.  In the democratic South Africa, both Education White Paper 6 (2001) and Curriculum 2005 call for assessment practices that are less expert-driven, non-deficit focused and linked to curriculum support.  The Initial Assessment Consultation (IAC) approach, which is the focus of this chapter, encompasses and addresses such aims.  This shared problem-solving approach to child assessment has at its core a focus on collaboration with parents and caregivers as well as significant others such as teachers, with the purpose of facilitating learning and the empowerment of clients.  The approach is based on a sound philosophical and theoretical foundation and is a radical departure from the belief that assessment and intervention are discrete clinical procedures.  The IAC approach to child assessment, which represents a paradigm shift in assessment practice, was initially developed by Adelman and Taylor (1979) at the Fernald Institute at the University of California to address prevailing criticisms of conventional assessment procedures.  Over the last two decades the IAC family participation and consultation model of assessment has been adapted and implemented at the University of the Witwatersrand.  Research has supported the usefulness of this holistic and egalitarian form of assessment which mirrors the more democratic environment of post-apartheid South Africa with its strong endorsement of human rights, sensitive cross-cultural differences and its changing educational policies on assessment practice (Amod, 2003; Amod, Skuy, Sonderup and Fridjhon, 2000; Dangor, 1983; Manala, 2001; Skuy, Westaway and Hickson, 1989; Sonderup, 1998).  The post-modernistic IAC model of assessment which emphasizes interpersonal, intrapersonal and environmental transactional factors in assessment has also been perceived positively by post-graduate students who have been trained in this approach at the University of the Witwatersrand (Dangor, 1983; Warburton, 2008).

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Chapter 28: Ethical Perspectives in Assessment

AUTHOR: N. Coetzee

ABSTRACT: Psychological assessment practices in South Africa are informed by several governing bodies. Firstly, there are the codes of conduct proposed by the International Test Commission and the American Psychological Association (APA). Secondly, practitioners must adhere to statutory control in the form of the Health Professions Act 56 of 1974. Thirdly, practitioners working in organizational and institutional contexts soon discover that they must also deal with two other forms of important legislation, namely the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (1997) and the Employment Equity Act (1998). Add to this the fact that South Africa is in dire need of appropriate measures of assessment, and it soon becomes clear that practicing psychological assessment could approximate a walk through a mine-field. The aim of this chapter, however, is not to add to the sense of confusion South African practitioners currently experience, but to provide them with detailed step-by-step guidelines on how to interpret and integrate the ethical codes proposed by the International Test Commission, the APA and the Health Professions Act 56 of 1974. Discussions and guidelines on how to interpret the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (1997) and the Employment Equity Act (1998) when conducting psychological assessment within the organizational context will also be provided. Research findings of relevant South African studies on psychological assessment will be incorporated throughout the text to illustrate that, despite all the hindrances experienced by practitioners, the ethical use of psychological assessment is possible.

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Chapter 27: The use of the Rorschach Inkblot Test in South Africa

This chapter will focus on the Comprehensive Exner System, into which all of the empirically defensible features of other, earlier approaches were merged. Even though the basis of the System has been in place for many years, research has been ongoing, also in South Africa. The Rorschach is an ideal instrument for exploring cross-cultural differences, because, unlike verbal or more structured tests, it involves culture-free stimuli. Various authors have concluded that it is a universally applicable and cross-culturally relevant instrument. In South Africa appropriate guidelines and norms have nevertheless not been developed, although some efforts have been made in this direction. Cultural influences on the administration and on response coding as well as the impact of language have been explored, at least to some extent. Some of the available studies such as those by Aronstam (2004), Moletsane and Eloff (2006), and Taylor and Dick (11997) can be seen as important in this regard. Various ongoing doctoral studies, in which the Rorschach is used as a measuring instrument, are also promising in terms of the future use of this test in the South African context. Rorschach testing constitutes a multifaceted method of data collection, and can be seen as a meaningful adjunct to a well-selected battery of tests where the understanding of an individual is important, be it for clinical, forensic or research purposes. The Rorschach is currently being used in South Africa in all of these settings, and knowledge of the strengths and disadvantages of using this test can be of considerable benefit to a clinician working in any of these areas. Intensive and long-term basic training, as well as ongoing more in depth training is crucial, if this test has to be of real use, adding significant information to that gleaned from other measuring instruments.

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Chapter 26: The Draw-a-Person (DAP) and Kinetic Family Drawing (KFD) in South Africa

AUTHORS: Z. Amod, R. Gericke, K. Bain

ABSTRACT: Projective testing through the use of human figure drawings which can be seen as a symbolic representation of the inner reality of an individual, is a valuable tool used in psychological assessment practice.  Gregory (2000) reported that projective drawings are amongst five of fifteen most frequently used tests by psychologists.  However results obtained from projective tests such as the Draw-A-Person Test (DAP) and the Kinetic Family Drawing (KFD) need to be used sensitively bearing in mind the unique socio-cultural context of the individual. In this chapter, based on an introductory overview of the DAP and KFD (which would look at administration, issues of reliability and validity, and as well as uses and limitations), the focus would be on the clinical application of these tests using illustrative case examples. Cross-cultural issues and related research will be examined.  While South African research in relation to the drawing tests is limited, some pioneering work has been conducted  (Richter, Griesel and Wortley, 1988; Rudenberg, Jansen and Fridjhon, 1998; Davidow, 1999; Douglas, 2009).   The chapter will be concluded with a brief discussion of other related projective drawing tests such as the House-Tree-Person technique, the Chromatic HTP Test and the Kinetic School Drawing.

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