Research Skills

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Research Skills

  1. 1. M4A2GraboskiWalter PSY415 1 Walter L Graboski 02/2/2011 Psychological Assessment | PSY415 Instructor: Dr. Sencil Research Skills
  2. 2. M4A2GraboskiWalter PSY415 2 The overview and history of the MMPI-2 starts with the following: The MMPI-2psychological test is composed of several hundred “yes or no” questions,( guidetopsychology.com) MMPI-2, are licensed by the University of Minnesota Press toPearson Assessments and other companies located in different countries. The computerscoring programs offer a range of scoring profile choices including the extended scorereport, which includes data on the newest and most psychometrically advanced scale,(wapedia.mobi). The author, publisher, versions including corresponding copyright yearsand appropriate ages was developed in the late 1930’s by psychologist Starke R.Hathaway and psychiatrist J.C. McKinley at the University of Minnesota. It isappropriate for use with adults 18 and over, (wapedia.mobi). The current MMPI-2 has 567 items, all true-or-false format, and usually takesbetween 1 and 2 hours to complete depending on reading level, (wapedia.mobi).Like many standardized tests, scores on the various scales of the MMPI-2 and theMMPI-2-RF are not representative of either percentile rank or how "well" or "poorly"someone has done on the test. Rather, analysis looks at relative elevation of factorscompared to the various norm groups studied. Raw scores on the scales are transformedinto a standardized metric known as T-scores (Mean or Average equals 50, StandardDeviation equals 10, (wapedia.mobi). The accuracy, or usefulness, of a test is known as its validity. ConstructValidity refers to the ability of a test to measure the psychological construct, such asdepression, that it was designed to measure. One way this can be assessed is through thetest’s convergent or divergent validity, which refers to whether a test can give resultssimilar to other tests of the same construct and different from tests of different constructs.
  3. 3. M4A2GraboskiWalter PSY415 3The ability of a test to give consistent results is known as its reliability. InternalConsistency Reliability refers to how well all the test items relate to each other. Note thatwithout reliability, there can be no validity, (www.guidetopsychology.com). A classic problem with validity arises when someone uses a test for a purposefor which it was not designed. MMPI-2 is often used as a screening tool for lawenforcement, seminary students, firefighters/paramedics, airline pilots,medical/psychology students, and nuclear power facility workers. Your rights to anypsychological test are the following: to know the purpose of the testing; to know thenames of, and rationales for, the tests being used; to know the results of the testing (youeven have the right to read the psychological report itself); to determine, through yoursign release information who will have access to the testing information (interviewinformation, raw scores, test reports) in your chart, (www.guidetopsychology.com). Content validity is related toface validity, but they should not be confused. Thelatter is not validity in the technical sense; it refers, not to what the test actually measures,but to what it appears superficially to measure. Face validity pertains to whether the test"looks valid" to the examinees who take it, the administrative personnel who decide on itsuse, and other technically untrained observers. Content validity requires more rigorousstatistical tests than face validity, which only requires an intuitive judgement. Contentvalidity is most often addressed in academic and vocational testing, where test items needto reflect the knowledge actually required for a given topic area (e.g., history) or job skill,(http://e.wikipedia.org).The advantages and disadvantages of face validity include the following: Face validity isbased solely on the judgment of the researcher. Each question is scrutinized and modified
  4. 4. M4A2GraboskiWalter PSY415 4until the researcher is satisfied that it is an accurate measure of the desired construct. Thedetermination of face validity is based on the subjective opinion of the researcher. (http://www.statpac.com). Therefore, a disadvantage would be that no test is given to explainthe results of the test it is up to the researcher if it looks good than its good where anadvantage is the time consuming on a client when diagnosing the illness there is no test tobe given which basically relief’s stress and anxiety from the client. When it comes to the clinical scales which has ten numbers ranging from one tozero where that are used to indicate different psychotic conditions. Scale 1 –Hypochondriasis: This scale was designed to asses a neurotic concern over bodilyfunctioning. The 32-items on this scale concern somatic symptoms and physical wellbeing. The scale was originally developed to identify patients displaying the symptoms ofhypochondria. Scale 2 – Depression: This scale was originally designed to identifydepression, characterized by poor morale, lack of hope in the future, and a generaldissatisfaction with ones own life situation. Very high scores may indicate depression,while moderate scores tend to reveal a general dissatisfaction with one’s life. Scale 3 –Hysteria: The third scale was originally designed to identify those who display hysteria instressful situations. Those who are well educated and of a high social class tend to scorehigher on this scale. Women also tend to score higher than men on this scale. Scale 4 -Psychopathic Deviate: Originally developed to identify psychopathic patients, this scalemeasures social deviation, lack of acceptance of authority, and amorality. This scale canbe thought of as a measure of disobedience. High scorers tend to be more rebellious,while low scorers are more accepting of authority. Despite the name of this scale, highscorers are usually diagnosed with a personality disorder rather than a psychotic disorder.
  5. 5. M4A2GraboskiWalter PSY415 5Scale 5 – Masculinity/Femininity: This scale was designed by the original author’s toidentify homosexual tendencies, but was found to be largely ineffective. High scores onthis scale are related to factors such as intelligence, socioeconomic status, and education.Women tend to score low on this scale. Scale 6 – Paranoia: This scale was originallydeveloped to identify patients with paranoid symptoms such as suspiciousness, feelingsof persecution, grandiose self-concepts, excessive sensitivity, and rigid attitudes. Thosewho score high on this scale tend to have paranoid symptoms. Scale 7 – Psychasthenia:This diagnostic label is no longer used today and the symptoms described on this scaleare more reflective of obsessive-compulsive disorder. This scale was originally used tomeasure excessive doubts, compulsions, obsessions, and unreasonable fears. Scale 8 –Schizophrenia: This scale was originally developed to identify schizophrenic patients andreflects a wide variety of areas including bizarre thought processes and peculiarperceptions, social alienation, poor familial relationships, difficulties in concentration andimpulse control, lack of deep interests, disturbing questions of self-worth and self-identity, and sexual difficulties. This scale is considered difficult to interpret. Scale 9 –Hypomania: This scale was developed to identify characteristics of hypomania such aselevated mood, accelerated speech and motor activity, irritability, flight of ideas, andbrief periods of depression. Scale 0 – Social Introversion: This scale was developed laterthan the other nine scales as is designed to assess a person’s tendency to withdraw fromsocial contacts and responsibilities, (psychology.about.com). When it comes to the validity includes three basic types of validity measures:those that were designed to detect non-responding or inconsistent responding thosedesigned to detect when clients are over reporting or exaggerating the prevalence or
  6. 6. M4A2GraboskiWalter PSY415 6severity of psychological symptoms, and those designed to detect when test-takers areunder-reporting or downplaying psychological symptoms, (wikipedia.org). When it comes to the content scales which is used more frequently on thesubstance abuse scales designed to assess the extent to which a client admits to or isprone to abusing substances. (wikipedia.org). The four types of validity scales include the following: First, Cannot Say Scale(?): A scale used to measure the number of items on the assessment that were leftunanswered. Secondly, Infrequency Scale (F): A high score on the "F" scale generallysuggests that deviant responses were given. The "F" scale hints at "extra testcharacteristics or behaviors" Meaning, if a person has a tendency toward exaggeration oftheir symptoms, the "F" scale will pick it up and make this assessment tendency andinaccuracy known to the tester. Thirdly, Lie Scale (L): This scale is fairly selfexplanatory. The Lie Scale is the set of questions in the MMPI used to detect whether anindividual is making themselves seem more well adjusted than they actually are. Finally,Defensiveness Scale (K): A very subtle scale used to pick out respondents tendency tofake on the test in order to make themselves look better, (www.associatedcontent.com)
  7. 7. M4A2GraboskiWalter PSY415 7References:http:www.associatedcontent.comhttp://www.guidetopsychology.com/testing.htmhttp://psychology.about.com/od/psychologicaltesting/a/mmpi_2.htmhttp://www.statpac.com/research-papers/research-process.htmhttp://wapedia.mobi/en/Minnesota_Multiphasic_Personality_Inventory

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