Chapter

1 The Assessment Process

Assessment Psychology

I. ASSESSMENT ISSUES

  1. Irving B. Weiner ABPP PhD

Published Online: 26 SEP 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781118133880.hop210001

Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition

Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition

How to Cite

Weiner, I. B. 2012. The Assessment Process. Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition. 10:I:1.

Author Information

  1. University of South Florida, Department of Psychiatry and Neurosciences, Tampa, Florida, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 26 SEP 2012

Abstract

The psychological assessment process begins with information input, which consists of collecting assessment data of appropriate kinds and in sufficient amounts to address referral questions in meaningful and useful ways. The collection of assessment information involves formulating the purposes an assessment is intended to serve; selecting the assessment methods to be used; and attending to examiner, respondent, and data management issues that can influence the findings that are obtained. The process continues with information evaluation, which consists of interpreting assessment data in a manner that provides accurate descriptions of respondents' psychological characteristics and behavioral tendencies. Adequate interpretation includes consideration of the basis on which inferences are drawn, the possible effects on the findings of malingering or defensiveness, and how best to integrate data from diverse sources. The assessment process concludes with information output, which consists of preparing and communicating conclusions and recommendations that respond to referral questions. These conclusions and recommendations should take account of possible sources of bias, relevant base rates, value judgments that affect the implications of cutting- scores, and the cultural background and social context of the person being evaluated. Psychological assessment is thus a complex process in which broad perspectives and attention to interacting variables provide necessary guidelines for effective research designs and practical applications.

Keywords:

  • assessment;
  • assessment process;
  • psychological assessment;
  • testing