Ethics, Subjectivity, and the Art of Assessment

[WLO: 3] [CLOs: 1, 2, 4]

Prior to beginning work on this journal assignment, read the following:

Objectivity and subjectivity are concepts frequently discussed in the sciences. When applied to psychological assessment, objectivity describes data that is collected through measurement, observation, and the examination of information considered to be factual. Subjectivity describes information based on factors unique to the evaluator (e.g., personal morals, worldviews, personal opinions, and value judgments). All assessments have both objective and subjective aspects. 

Your paper should be two to three double-spaced pages and should model critical thought and understanding of the content, as demonstrated in Samantha Agoos’s TED-Ed animation 5 Tips to Improve Your Critical Thinking. Refer to the Writing Center’s APA Citing Within Your Paper Guide resource to assist you when providing APA Style citations to support your ideas based on information summarized and paraphrased from the assigned readings and additional scholarly sources. Apply the rules associated with professional academic grammar in your writing and consider using the University of Arizona Global Campus Writing Center’s Grammarly: A Free Proofreading Tool resource. Minimally, cite the required article and the textbook to support your points. You may also use additional scholarly sources. The Scholarly, Peer Reviewed, and Other Credible Sources table offers additional guidance on appropriate source types. Do not use information from dictionaries or encyclopedias in your paper. References should be listed on the last page of your journal assignment following APA Style format, seventh edition. You will have until 11:59 p.m. on Day 7 (Monday) to submit your journal assignment.

After reviewing the required readings, reflect on the following quote from the course textbook.

Psychometrics is also the art and science of determining how valid the inferences are that are drawn from a test. If a test isn’t reliable, if results are not consistent from one administration to the next, and the test doesn’t do a good job of establishing a true score, it is not a good measurement tool. It cannot be counted on to provide accurate information about the attribute in question. Thus, establishing the reliability of a test is fundamental to determining the validity of the interpretations of test scores. However, even a test that is reliable can produce results that are not valid for the test’s intended purpose. (Goldfinger, 2018, p.9)

To successfully complete this assignment, address each of the following topics in your journal in the order presented below.


Identify a psychological test you learned about in this class. Ideally, select a test that is relevant to some aspect of your current or future career journey. It may be a test that was discussed in the course resources or a test you researched for one of the assignments for this course. Briefly describe the test, what it measures, and why you selected it. As this is a journal assignment, your introduction does not need to have a thesis statement.


Discuss ethical and methodological considerations related to cultural diversity using this assessment. For groups representing which types of diversity would this test be most valid? For which diversity groups would you expect test bias or examiner bias to be more likely to negatively impact validity?


Having completed this class, describe how your understand of psychological assessment has developed or changed. How susceptible, in general, are you to advertising and marketing strategies and how might that level of susceptibility make it more likely for you to use a test without fully researching the validity of the test? What resources and skills do you have that will enable you to fully research tests being considered for use?

Reminder: An internet search alone does not constitute fully researching a test. Search engines direct sources to users based on algorithms, paid advertisements, not science, and confirmation bias often leads users to stop researching once they find an article that agrees with what they already believe or want to believe.

The Art of Assessment

Despite limitations in tests and assessment procedures, they can also be useful bring together data and information from multiple sources toward gaining a better understanding of an individual, group, family, or program. Reflecting on the quote from the Goldfinger text above and any personal experience you have with testing and assessment, create an artform to depict what “the art of assessment” means to you. In this section, your creation may be shared in any of the following formats: poem, song lyrics, image, cartoon, story board, figure, graphic, or a photograph of a physical item you create. Include a brief description for your creation and explain how it represents “the art of assessment.”


Share any additional reflections you would like to share related to psychological testing and assessment.

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