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Psychological testing: a new approach

Psychological testing is used in many walks of life to assess ability, personality and behaviour. Test results can be a helpful tool in the selection and promotion process for job interviews, child assessments in schools and the review of offenders. Tests are also used in the National Health Service (NHS) as a diagnostic tool to help people with mental health issues.

There are two types of psychological test - tests of ability, aptitude or attainment, known as measures of maximum performance and those designed to assess personal qualities, such as personality, beliefs, social competence, values, developmental milestones and interests and to measure motivation or drive. These are known as measures of typical performance.

Those wishing to take a practice test may wish to visit the Directory of Companies who offer Practice Tests  based on the British Psychological Society’s Psychological Testing Centre (PTC) website.

The PTC is the leading national organisation for setting test standards, providing information and services for test takers, users, developers and members of the public.

This autumn, the Society’s PTC is undergoing some exciting changes to help make its services more accessible. The changes went live on Tuesday 6 September 2011.

Their website will include the Society’s Register of Qualifications in Test Use (RQTU). The RQTU is the new name for the Register of Competence in Psychological Testing. For the first time the register will be accessible for members of the public to check if a person holds one of the Society’s qualifications in test use.  The Register lists over 9000 qualified educational and occupational test users, who have agreed to abide the Code of Good Practice for Psychological Testing.  

One benefit for current test users is that through the RQTU they will receive a profile, listing their name and levels of qualifications. Their profile can be updated as they continue their professional development through further assessments of their competence.

The PTC has also removed the cap on the number of personality measures in which occupational test users can evidence their competence, which is welcome news for those wishing to evidence competence in a range of personality instruments.

The changes place greater emphasis on the actual practice of testing and related issues.  With this in mind, every six years registered test users will be required to revalidate their qualifications in test use, having demonstrated that they have maintained their competence. This initiative aims to ensure that only competent and current test users retain valid qualifications and an entry on the RQTU.

For more information on the new RQTU, take a look at the Introduction to the Register of Qualifications in Test Use . Information about the new test user qualifications can be accessed through the webpage how to apply and packs.

Contact PTC

Email: [email protected]  

Tel: +44 (0)116 252 9530