1. Psychological assessment is defined as the action, carried out by a competent professional, usually a psychologist, in which certain techniques and tools of psychology are used to learn either general or specific facts about another person, with the objective either to inform others of how they function at a certain moment, or to predict their functioning and possible changes in the future (Groth-Marnat, 2009).
The main parts of assessment are the interview, behavioral observations and testing. As far as interviewing is concerned, the two general types of interviews are structured and unstructured interview. In terms of a structured interview the interviewee is to answer closed questions by giving pre-determined forced-format answers, such as “yes/no” or "definitely/somewhat/not at all". Unstructured interview gives the interviewee more control over the topic and the assessment process by using open questions.
The potential threats of effective interviewing are as follows: reliability is generally low, it can be very subjective, it may create stress which is counter-productive.
2. In constantly evolving business environment modern employers use personality testing among other staff selection techniques. Personality tests are self-report measures of traits, temperaments, or dispositions. There are various personality measures available. Some focus on a number of personality characteristics; others concentrate on measuring single traits (Shaffer & Schmidt, 1999).
I believe that personality tests are a powerful tool of selecting employees, as they allow the employer to assess all traits of character and select only those candidates, who comply with the demands and do not create any potential risks. As for the aspect of legitimacy, it should be taken to account that all personality tests are designed in compliance with national laws, which protect the test takers’ rights. In case of the tests’ diligent compliance with the law, they can be considered a valuable means of job placement.
Groth-Marnat, G. (2009). Handbook of Psychological Assessment. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.
Shaffer, D. J., & Schmidt, R. A. (1999). Personality testing in employment. Retrieved from http://library.findlaw.com/1999/Dec/22/130153.html