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Below, please find a non-inclusive list of psychological tests that are often used by professionals, including a brief description of each test and its use. This glossary is intended primarily as a starter-guide for the layperson.
Note: In order to faciliate finding a particular test or keyword, you may want to use the edit/find function in your internet browser.
Beck Depression Inventory - Pencil/paper test used in conjunction with professional where subjects rate themselves on a variety of symptoms/experiences. Used to assess depression / level of depression.
Burns Depression / Anxiety checklists - Pencil/paper tests where subject is asked to rate themselves on different symptoms, thoughts, and feelings. Ratings then yield scores which are used to determine a subject's level of depression or anxiety. These are two different checklists that are used in conjunction with a trained professional.
Conner's Rating Scale - Rating sheets that come in forms for parents or teachers that ask about a child's behavior as it pertains to symptoms of Attention Deficit Disorder. One of the most popular rating forms for diagnosing childhood ADD.
Dementia Rating Scale - Assessment completed by a professional for the purpose of diagnosing dementia and/or Alzheimer's disease. Requires the subject to perform several tasks, such as following simple instructions, performing basic hand coordination exercises, and short-term memory and cognitition exercises. Is not the only assessment instrument that can be used for diagnosing dementia. Can be used for relatively impaired individuals.
Eysenck Personality Questionnaire - Pencil/paper test where subject is asked to complete a brief questionnaire in a yes/no format, depending on how questions apply to them. Test yields four scores, (Extraversion, Psychoticism, Neuroticism, and Lie - Note, the meaning of these scales does not refer to the use of these four words as we commonly know them. I.E., Psychoticism does not measure one's psychotic potential, etc.) which then correspond to levels of four different personality traits.
Hamilton Depression Scale - Another pencil/paper type test where a subject is asked to rate themselves on various symptoms, thoughts, and feelings. Ratings are then turned into scores which are interpreted as levels of depression. Test is scored by a trained professional.
House - Person - Tree Test - This is a projective test where a subject is usually asked to draw separate pictures of a house, a person, and a tree. They may be asked to draw in pencil, or in colored crayon. They may also be asked to draw additional pictures, and are often asked to create stories regarding these pictures. Professional generally interprets these pictures/answers based on themes evident in the drawing, and also based on other methods and theories. Scoring method for this type of test often varies greatly.
Milan Multiaxial Clinical Inventory 2 (MCMI II) - This is a pencil and paper test where subjects answer yes/no to various questions about their experience, depending on how they pertain to them. Takes less time to complete than the MMPI2, and yields information on various personality characteristics. Is statistically well-normed and validated, but must be interpreted by an experienced profession.
MMPI2 (Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory 2) - This is a pencil and paper test, or can also be completed on a computer, where subjects answer yes/no to various questions depending on how they pertain to them. Can take upwards of one hour to complete. Is statistically well-normed and validated, but must be interpreted by an experienced professional. Measures various personality characteristics, including depression, anxiety, obsessiveness, social introversion. Can also provide some measure of thought disorder.
Myers - Briggs Type Indicator - Traditionally a simple pencil/paper self-report test, subjects are asked to answer questions based on their likes/dislikes and experiences. Test yields a four digit code that sorts subjects into 16 personality types. Is often used to help individuals make career-related decisions, or to understand their own way of looking at and/or perceiving the world around them.
Neurobehavioral Cognitive Status Exam (Cognistat) - An assessment performed by a trained professional for the purpose of screening for dementia and/or impairment in cognitive functioning that may be caused by other conditions. Subjects are asked to perform various tasks, such as short-term memory assessment, tile-design, sentence repetition, picture naming, and finding similarities between objects. Is relatively sensitive to screening for early dementia.
Rorschach Inkblot Test - Projective test where subject is shown a series of inkblots and is asked what they see in these inkblots. Test can be scored in a variety of different ways, and is used primarily to uncover personality traits.. However, other uses of this test have also been to investigate thought disorders, perception, and emotional issues. There are several scoring systems for this test, many of which do not have adequate reliability and/or scientific validity. Test should only be used by a licensed mental health professional skilled in the use and scoring of this test.
Sentence Completion Blank - There are numerous types of sentence-completion tests available, depending on population to be tested. Generally, subject is given a 1-2 page form of incomplete sentences. Sentences are started, and subject is asked to complete them. Professional scores the test, usually on themes that are evident in the completed sentences. Test is considered projective, and scoring methods vary greatly. Can yield information on personality, stress, depression, etc.
Strong Interest Inventory - Usually a pencil/paper test is a yes/no format where subject is asked to answer many questions regarding their likes/dislikes and thoughts/ideas. Answers are then compared to profiles of persons in various careers, and in this manner, subject is given possible careers that they may be interested in.
Suicide Probability Scale - Pencil/paper test administered by a trained professional where subjects rate themselves on various thoughts, feelings, and ideas. Ratings are then turned into scores, which are interpreted as a Suicide Risk profile. Suicide risk is determined by scores, but also by various risk categories that a subject may fall into.
Thematic Apperception Test (TAT) - Administered by a highly trained professional, subject is shown a series of several cards depicting people in various situations. Subject is asked to tell a detailed story about each card. Story is then interpreted by professional. Scoring methods for this test vary greatly, as does the experience of examiner. Is often used to assess personality, depression, world outlook, etc.
Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales - Used along with a professional, parents, teachers, or care-givers rate subjects on thier ability to successfully perform tasks in a variety of areas (I.E., daily living, self-care, managing finances, etc.). Measures adaptive functioning and is often used in the assessment of Mental Retardation and Pervasive Developmental Disorders. For use in younger children up to adult age. Can be pencil/paper interview, or is sometimes completed on a computer.
Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale—Third Edition (WAIS-III) - Popular intelligence test. Asks subjects to perform multiple tasks, such as vocabulary, mathmatical calculations, block design, and common knowledge. Yields both a Verbal and Performance IQ, as well as a full-scale (overall) IQ. Is statistically well-normed and validated. Must be administered and scored by a trained professional. Often takes 45 minutes up to 2 hours to complete.
Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-III (WISC-III) - Popular intelligence test for children. Asks subjects to perform multiple tasks, such as vocabulary, evaluating pictures, etc. Is somewhat similar to adult version of this test, except it is normed for children. Yields both a Verbal and Performance IQ, as well as a full-scale (overall) IQ. Is statistically well-normed and validated. Must be administered and scored by a trained professional. Often takes 45 minutes up to 2 hours to complete.
Wechsler Memory Scale-Revised (WMS-R) - Administered by a trained professional, this test assesses memory functioning, especially when either cognitive impairment or dementia is suspected. Subjects are asked to perform a variety of tasks, such as face recognition and story recall. This test is normed and validated. Can often take a long time to complete because of numerous subtests that must be administered for accurate scoring - can easily take 1-2 hours.