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PSYC332 – Principles of Psychological Assessment

2017 – S1 Day

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit Convenor
Lorna Peters
Contact via lorna.peters@mq.edu.au
C3A 712
Credit points Credit points
3
Prerequisites Prerequisites
PSY248 and (PSY234 or PSY246)
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
This unit is concerned with the assessment of individual differences in intelligence and personality through the use of appropriate psychological tests. Important principles of psychological measurement and assessment are covered, including: standardisation, norms, reliability, test development and validation. The practical program emphasises test development and test administration; scoring and interpretation; and highlights current issues in the use and interpretation of tests.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at http://students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/enrolmentguide/academicdates/

Learning Outcomes

  1. Understand the historical and theoretical basis of psychological testing
  2. Remember, understand, and apply statistical procedures to describe the psychometric properties of a test
  3. Generate a psychological test and examine its adequacy using empirical procedures
  4. Understand the theoretical and empirical bases of psychological tests used to assess the main domains of cognition and personality
  5. Understand the application of psychological tests in a variety of domains of psychological practice (e.g., organisational and clinical contexts)

General Assessment Information

Assessment in PSYC332 is made up of Online Quizzes, a Midsession Exam, a Written Report, and the Final Exam.

Macquarie University operates under a ‘Fit to Sit’ model (see http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/disruption_studies/policy.html). This means that in sitting an exam and/or in-class test or otherwise submitting an assessment, a student declares themselves fit to do so. Therefore, if a student is feeling unfit to sit the exam or test, or otherwise submit the assessment (as the case may be), they should not do so. If a student sits an exam or test, or otherwise submits an assessment, knowing that they are unfit to do so, they will not be granted Special Consideration.   It is the responsibility of the student to determine whether they are fit to sit an examination or test or otherwise submit an assessment, or whether a Disruption to Studies claim should be submitted for non-participation. A student’s sitting an examination or test or otherwise submitting an assessment will not preclude the student from being granted Special Consideration if the student can demonstrate that: (a) they were unfit to make reasonable judgement on their fitness to undertake the assessment, due to mental illness or other exceptional circumstances; (b) they were taken ill during the assessment (in the case of an examination or test) or (c) other exceptional circumstances beyond their control vitiated the Fit to Sit declaration.

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Due
Online Quizzes 10% Start of the next lecture
Midsession Exam 20% Week 7
Written Report 35% Week 8
Final Exam 35% During the Examination Period

Online Quizzes

Due: Start of the next lecture
Weighting: 10%

Brief online quizzes will be available to students via iLearn immediately after each lecture and will be due at the beginning of the lecture the following week. These online quizzes will contain a few multiple-choice questions that will test students’ ability to remember and understand the core concepts from the lecture (Learning outcomes 1-6). Students will be provided with feedback on their own performance at the end of the week in which the quiz is available. The scores you obtain on the quizzes will be counted in your final mark for the unit if the scores optimize your mark. If included, quizzes will be worth 10% of your final mark on the unit. While the score for quizzes may not be included in your final mark (if you gain a better mark without them included), it is highly recommended that you complete the quizzes, as they will allow you to assess your progress in learning the unit content. 

Students who, due to medical or other extenuating circumstances, are unable to complete an online quiz by the submission deadline must make a request in writing (for example, an email or letter), supported by documentary evidence, for that online quiz to be excluded from their marks for the unit. The request should be addressed to the Unit Convenor (Dr Lorna Peters) and submitted directly to the Unit Convenor no later than 5 working days after the missed online quiz. Where the circumstances for not completing the online quiz are deemed by the Unit Convenor to meet the University’s definition of serious and unavoidable disruption to study (which can be found at http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/disruption_studies/policy.html), the total mark for online quizzes will exclude the missed quiz. Otherwise, students will be given a mark of zero for the missed quiz.

 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Understand the historical and theoretical basis of psychological testing
  • Remember, understand, and apply statistical procedures to describe the psychometric properties of a test
  • Generate a psychological test and examine its adequacy using empirical procedures
  • Understand the theoretical and empirical bases of psychological tests used to assess the main domains of cognition and personality
  • Understand the application of psychological tests in a variety of domains of psychological practice (e.g., organisational and clinical contexts)

Midsession Exam

Due: Week 7
Weighting: 20%

A midsession exam will be conducted during the lecture in week 7. All students must ensure that they are available to be on campus at that time. There is no separate arrangement available for evening students to sit the midsession exam. The exam will take one hour. Depending on the final number of students enrolled in the unit, there may be two sittings (one in the first hour of the lecture and another in he second hour of the lecture) during which the exam will be conducted. Final details about attendance time will be given via an iLearn announcement.

The midsession exam will test students’ ability to apply and analyse the statistics introduced in the lectures in weeks 1 – 5 (Learning outcome 2).

Students will need to bring a calculator, but no other materials will be allowed during the exam.

Students will not be required to recall formulae –a sheet containing formulae will be provided. Questions will require students to use data to generate the statistics and to use the results of their calculations to make judgements about tests. Different data sets will be generated for students to reduce the chance that students can copy directly from one another. Worked examples of the sorts of questions asked on the test will be demonstrated in the lectures. Students will be provided with feedback via the iLearn page for the unit on their performance three weeks after the exam. Feedback will be in the form of a mark for the exam and the worked solutions for the questions in the exam.

Students who are unable to attend the midsession exam at the specified time due to serious and unavoidable circumstances must notify the Faculty of Human Sciences Student Services Centre via ask.mq.edu.au attaching appropriate supporting documents. Original documents will also need to be presented at the Student Centre. This should be done within five (5) working days from the day of the midsession examination. The unit convenor will determine eligibility for a late midsession exam and eligible students will be notified via email (using the official university email address for the student) about the time (likely to be during the lecture time in week 8; this date is subject to change) and location of the late midsession exam. The format of a special examination is at the unit convenor's discretion and is subject to change from the original midsession examination. There will be only one alternative time.

 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Remember, understand, and apply statistical procedures to describe the psychometric properties of a test

Written Report

Due: Week 8
Weighting: 35%

A written report (maximum 1500 words), in APA format, will be due by close of business (5pm) on Tuesday of Week 8. Students should submit their assignment via Turnitin on the iLearn webpage for the Unit. Feedback on the report will be returned via iLearn in week 12.

The report will be based on Tutorials 1 and 2 and will report on the construction and psychometric properties of a brief test developed in the tutorial. The requirements of the assignment will be covered in the Lecture in Week 6. The report will assess students’ ability to understand, apply, and analyse the psychometric properties of a test and the steps involved in test construction (Learning outcomes 2 & 3). The report will also assess the students’ ability to evaluate psychometric statistics and generate hypotheses about how the psychometric statistics may be improved (Learning outcomes 2 & 3). The report will assess students’ ability to communicate in one of the ways that is common in the profession of psychology (APA formatted paper in the style of a journal article). Students will be able to self-assess their performance prior to submission of the assignment against the criteria which will be used by the tutors marking the assignment and will be available via the iLearn webpage for the unit prior to the submission date. Feedback will be provided relative to those criteria. 

Penalties will be levied for late submission of the assignment and for exceeding the word limit.

  • Lateness. Unless you have medical (or other) documentation verifying illness prior to the due date and covering all of the days that the assignment is late, late assignments will be penalised at the rate of 5% of the maximum assignment mark (i.e., 35/100) for every day late. That is, 1.75 marks will be deducted from the assignment mark for every day the assignment is late.  Late assignments will not be accepted after feedback has been made available via iLearn in week 12. If you have documentation supporting late submission, you must request an extension (see below) – do not simply attach medical certificates to your submitted assignment.
  • Exceeding the word limit. The assignment has a strict word limit of 1500 words (double spaced, Times New Roman 12 point font, 2.54 cm margins). Penalties for writing over the word limit will be levied: 5% of the maximum assignment mark (i.e., 35/100) for every 100 words written over the word limit. The word limit excludes the title page, tables and figures, and References pages. So, for example, if you write 100-199 words over the word limit, you will have 1.75 marks deducted from your assignment mark, if you write 200-299 words over the word limit, you will have 3.5 marks deducted from your assignment mark, etc.

Requests for extensions:

Ordinarily, no extensions of time for submission of written work will be granted since ample time for its preparation will have been given. If an extension is required for medical or other extenuating circumstances, students may request this in writing through ask.mq.edu.au with supporting documentary evidence (such as medical certificate, counsellor note, or similar). The staff in the Student Centre will make all decisions regarding extensions. Neither individual tutors nor the unit convenor will grant extensions. All requests for extensions must be made prior to the due date for the assignment. If an extension is granted the approval must be emailed to the Unit Chair. Failure to do so will result in a late penalty being applied as the marker will not know that an extension has been granted.

 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Remember, understand, and apply statistical procedures to describe the psychometric properties of a test
  • Generate a psychological test and examine its adequacy using empirical procedures

Final Exam

Due: During the Examination Period
Weighting: 35%

During the final exam period, students will complete a 1.5-hour multiple choice exam (60 questions) which will assess recall, understanding, and application of material presented in lectures 7 to 13 inclusive and in tutorials 3 to 6 inclusive, as well as any required readings associated with those lectures and tutorials. The exam will be weighted at 35% or 45% depending on whether the optional online quiz score is included in your mark (see above). 

The PSYC332 exam will be held during the University Examination period. The University Examination period in Session 1 is from 12th June to 30th June, 2017.

You are advised that it is Macquarie University policy not to set early examinations for individuals or groups of students. All students are expected to ensure that they are available until the end of the teaching Session, which is the final day of the official examination period. You are expected to present yourself for examination at the time and place designated in the University Examination Timetable. The timetable will be available in Draft form approximately eight weeks before the commencement of the examinations and in Final form approximately four weeks before the commencement of the examinations.

The only exception to not sitting an examination at the designated time is because of documented illness or unavoidable disruption. In these circumstances you may wish to consider applying for Disruption to Studies (formerly known as Special Consideration). Information about unavoidable disruption  is available at http://www.students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/manage_your_study_program/disruption_to_studies/. Applications for Disruption to Studies are made via ask.mq.edu.au within 5 days of the start of the disruption. If a supplementary final exam is granted as a result of the Disruption to Studies application, the examination will be scheduled after the conclusion of the official examination period.

Supplementary Examinations in the Department of Psychology will be held on the 13th and 14th of July, for Session One 2017. The format of the supplementary examination is at the unit convenor's discretion and is subject to change from the original final examination. Supplementary Exams are only offered to students who have satisfactorily completed all other assessments for the unit and were unable to sit the final exam because of documented illness or unavoidable disruption. Students who are granted permission to sit for a supplementary exam must make themselves available to sit for the supplementary exam on the specified date; there will be no alternative supplementary exam times. 

Note that there are no past exam papers available for students. As you will learn in this unit, creating good multiple choice questions that assess the breadth and depth of learning and provide information to the instructor about material that has not been mastered by students is not a straightforward task. As a result, a proportion of questions are re-used from year to year in the PSYC332 Final Exam. Releasing past papers would, therefore, invalidate the Final Exam. To allow students to revise for the Final Exam and practice multiple choice questions of the type used in the PSYC332 Final Exam, an example of the sorts of questions asked in the Final Exam will be made available via the iLearn unit towards the end of the session. This example will have a similar number of questions as will appear in the Final Exam.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Generate a psychological test and examine its adequacy using empirical procedures
  • Understand the theoretical and empirical bases of psychological tests used to assess the main domains of cognition and personality
  • Understand the application of psychological tests in a variety of domains of psychological practice (e.g., organisational and clinical contexts)

Delivery and Resources

Lectures

There will be one 2-hour lecture per week each week of the Session. 

All lecture material is examinable (either in the midsession exam or in the final exam).

Recordings of lectures will be made available via Echo. You can download the lecture recording from the iLearn page for the unit.

Tutorials

There are six 2-hour tutorials associated with this unit. Every student will attend one two-hour tutorial each fortnight. Tutorials begin in week 2 and 3 (depending on the stream) of session. Set reading will be required prior to some tutorials.

All tutorial material is assessable either in the assignment or in the final exam.

Attendance at tutorials is strongly advised – the material is assessable, but more importantly, it is in the tutorials that the application of material from lectures is discussed and demonstrated. 

Recommended Text and Materials

Tutorial outlines

Tutorial outlines will be available via the iLearn page for the unit.  Make sure that you bring the tutorial outline to each tutorial class. It is recommended that you read the relevant section before going to class.

Recommended Texts

Any recent text on Psychological Assessment  will more than likely cover the main content of the unit. The text that is recommended for the unit in 2016 is: 

Shum, D., O'Gorman, J., Myors, B., & Creed, P. (2013). Psychological Testing and Assessment. (Second Edition). Melbourne, Vic.: Oxford University Press.

Supplementary Readings

Supplementary readings may be provided by each lecturer for his/her section of the course. In addition, some of the tutorials have set readings. These and other relevant books and articles should be in Special Reserve. Many of the readings are available via the e-Reserve web page at the library.

 

Unit Web Page

You can access the online materials for this unit via iLearn. Announcements will be available once you have logged in. You can link to lecture recordings from the web page as well as download the overheads for each lecture. There will be an active student Forum. The on-line Quizzes can only be accessed from iLearn. 

Unit Schedule

Lecture order is subject to change depending on staff availability.

Week

Tutorials

Lectures (Tues 3-5)

1

 

28/2/17: Unit information – objectives, assessment, organization

Introduction to psychological assessment. Overview of types of tests. (Peters)

2

Tutorial 1: Test construction (the assignment is based on this tutorial)

7/3/17: Test scores. Norms. Reliability: Types; Sources of error; Methods of calculating (Peters)

3

14/3/17: Reliability: Reliability and standard error of measurement; worked examples

Validity: Types; Methods of determining validity

Relationship between reliability and validity (Peters)

4

Tutorial 2: Analysis of test data (the assignment is based on this tutorial also)

21/3/17: Test Construction (Peters)

5

28/3/17: Item Response Theory (Baillie)

 

6

Tutorial 3: Test fairness, test bias and testing special groups

4/4/17: Assignment requirements

Revision for the midsession exam (Peters)

7

11/4/17: MIDSESSION EXAM  (On-campus attendance during the lecture time is compulsory)

Midsession Break

8

ASSIGNMENT DUE TUESDAY 2/5/17

Tutorial 4: IQ testing with the Wechsler tests

 

 

 

2/5/17: Assessment of Intelligence: Theoretical Issues (Todorov))

9

9/5/17: Assessment of Intelligence: Clinical Issues (Todorov)

10

Tutorial 5: Current Issues in IQ Testing

16/5/17: Application of assessment techniques in clinical practice (Peters)

11

23/5/17: Personality Assessment: Self-report Inventories (Peters)

12

Tutorial 6: Personality Test Administration, scoring and interpretation

30/5/17: Personality Assessment: projective techniques (Peters)

13

6/6/17: Ethical issues in the use of psychological assessment (Peters; RECORDED LECTURE ONLY)

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central. Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Academic Honesty Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/academic_honesty/policy.html

Assessment Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/assessment/policy_2016.html

Grade Appeal Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/gradeappeal/policy.html

Complaint Management Procedure for Students and Members of the Public http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/complaint_management/procedure.html​

Disruption to Studies Policy http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/disruption_studies/policy.html The Disruption to Studies Policy is effective from March 3 2014 and replaces the Special Consideration Policy.

In addition, a number of other policies can be found in the Learning and Teaching Category of Policy Central.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/support/student_conduct/

Results

Results shown in iLearn, or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au.

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to improve your marks and take control of your study.

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Graduate Capabilities

Discipline Specific Knowledge and Skills

Our graduates will take with them the intellectual development, depth and breadth of knowledge, scholarly understanding, and specific subject content in their chosen fields to make them competent and confident in their subject or profession. They will be able to demonstrate, where relevant, professional technical competence and meet professional standards. They will be able to articulate the structure of knowledge of their discipline, be able to adapt discipline-specific knowledge to novel situations, and be able to contribute from their discipline to inter-disciplinary solutions to problems.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understand the historical and theoretical basis of psychological testing
  • Remember, understand, and apply statistical procedures to describe the psychometric properties of a test
  • Generate a psychological test and examine its adequacy using empirical procedures
  • Understand the theoretical and empirical bases of psychological tests used to assess the main domains of cognition and personality
  • Understand the application of psychological tests in a variety of domains of psychological practice (e.g., organisational and clinical contexts)

Assessment tasks

  • Online Quizzes
  • Midsession Exam
  • Written Report
  • Final Exam

Critical, Analytical and Integrative Thinking

We want our graduates to be capable of reasoning, questioning and analysing, and to integrate and synthesise learning and knowledge from a range of sources and environments; to be able to critique constraints, assumptions and limitations; to be able to think independently and systemically in relation to scholarly activity, in the workplace, and in the world. We want them to have a level of scientific and information technology literacy.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Remember, understand, and apply statistical procedures to describe the psychometric properties of a test
  • Generate a psychological test and examine its adequacy using empirical procedures
  • Understand the theoretical and empirical bases of psychological tests used to assess the main domains of cognition and personality
  • Understand the application of psychological tests in a variety of domains of psychological practice (e.g., organisational and clinical contexts)

Assessment tasks

  • Midsession Exam
  • Written Report

Problem Solving and Research Capability

Our graduates should be capable of researching; of analysing, and interpreting and assessing data and information in various forms; of drawing connections across fields of knowledge; and they should be able to relate their knowledge to complex situations at work or in the world, in order to diagnose and solve problems. We want them to have the confidence to take the initiative in doing so, within an awareness of their own limitations.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Remember, understand, and apply statistical procedures to describe the psychometric properties of a test
  • Generate a psychological test and examine its adequacy using empirical procedures
  • Understand the application of psychological tests in a variety of domains of psychological practice (e.g., organisational and clinical contexts)

Assessment tasks

  • Midsession Exam
  • Written Report

Creative and Innovative

Our graduates will also be capable of creative thinking and of creating knowledge. They will be imaginative and open to experience and capable of innovation at work and in the community. We want them to be engaged in applying their critical, creative thinking.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Assessment task

  • Written Report

Effective Communication

We want to develop in our students the ability to communicate and convey their views in forms effective with different audiences. We want our graduates to take with them the capability to read, listen, question, gather and evaluate information resources in a variety of formats, assess, write clearly, speak effectively, and to use visual communication and communication technologies as appropriate.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Assessment task

  • Written Report

Engaged and Ethical Local and Global citizens

As local citizens our graduates will be aware of indigenous perspectives and of the nation's historical context. They will be engaged with the challenges of contemporary society and with knowledge and ideas. We want our graduates to have respect for diversity, to be open-minded, sensitive to others and inclusive, and to be open to other cultures and perspectives: they should have a level of cultural literacy. Our graduates should be aware of disadvantage and social justice, and be willing to participate to help create a wiser and better society.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • Understand the application of psychological tests in a variety of domains of psychological practice (e.g., organisational and clinical contexts)

Assessment task

  • Final Exam

Socially and Environmentally Active and Responsible

We want our graduates to be aware of and have respect for self and others; to be able to work with others as a leader and a team player; to have a sense of connectedness with others and country; and to have a sense of mutual obligation. Our graduates should be informed and active participants in moving society towards sustainability.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Assessment task

  • Written Report

Capable of Professional and Personal Judgement and Initiative

We want our graduates to have emotional intelligence and sound interpersonal skills and to demonstrate discernment and common sense in their professional and personal judgement. They will exercise initiative as needed. They will be capable of risk assessment, and be able to handle ambiguity and complexity, enabling them to be adaptable in diverse and changing environments.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Generate a psychological test and examine its adequacy using empirical procedures
  • Understand the application of psychological tests in a variety of domains of psychological practice (e.g., organisational and clinical contexts)

Assessment tasks

  • Midsession Exam
  • Written Report
  • Final Exam

Commitment to Continuous Learning

Our graduates will have enquiring minds and a literate curiosity which will lead them to pursue knowledge for its own sake. They will continue to pursue learning in their careers and as they participate in the world. They will be capable of reflecting on their experiences and relationships with others and the environment, learning from them, and growing - personally, professionally and socially.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Assessment tasks

  • Online Quizzes
  • Written Report

Changes since First Published

Date Description
22/02/2017 Added a paragraph on release of past exam papers.