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Psychological assessment guides are created by psychology professionals to provide the public with accurate and authoritative information appropriate for their current needs. Information available to the public about psychological testing and assessment varies widely depending on the professional creating it, the purpose of the assessment, and the intended audience. When professionals effectively educate the public on the how, what, and why behind assessments and the strengths and limitations of commonly used instruments, potential clients are in a better position to be informed users of assessment products and services. The Assessment Guides developed in this course will be designed to provide the lay public with accurate and culturally relevant information to aid them in making informed decisions about psychological testing. Students will develop their Guides with the goal of educating readers to be informed participants in the assessment process.
There is no required template for the development of the Assessment Guide. Students are encouraged to be creative while maintaining the professional appearance of their work. The Guide must be reader-friendly (sixth- to ninth-grade reading level) and easy to navigate, and it must include a combination of text, images, and graphics to engage readers in the information provided. Throughout their Guides, students will provide useful examples and definitions as well as questions readers should ask their practitioners. To ensure accuracy, students are expected to use only scholarly and peer-reviewed sources for the information in the development of their Guides.
Students will begin their Guides with a general overview of assessment, reasons for assessment referrals, and the importance of the role of each individual in the process. Within each of the remaining sections, students will describe the types of assessments that their readers may encounter, the purposes of each type of assessment, the different skills and abilities the instruments measure, the most valid and reliable uses of the measures, and limitations of the measures. A brief section will be included to describe the assessment process, the types of professionals who conduct the assessments, and what to expect during the assessment meetings.
The Assessment Guide must include the following sections:
Table of Contents (Portrait orientation must be used for the page layout of this section.)
In this one-page section, students must list the following subsections and categories of assessments.
Section 1: Introduction and Overview (Portrait or landscape orientation may be used for the page layout of this section.)
Students will begin their Guides with a general overview of assessment. In this two-page section, students will briefly address the major aspects of the assessment process. Students are encouraged to develop creative titles for these topics that effectively communicate the meanings to the intended audience.
Categories of Assessment (Portrait or landscape orientation may be used for the page layout of this section.)
For each of the following, students will create a two-page information sheet or pamphlet to be included in the Assessment Guide. For each category of assessment, students will include the required content listed in the PSY640 Content for Testing Pamphlets and Information Sheets. Be sure to reference the content requirements prior to completing each of the information sheets on the following categories of assessment.
Special Topics (Student’s Choice)
In addition to the required seven categories of assessment listed above, students will develop an eighth information sheet or pamphlet that includes information targeted either at a specific population or about a specific issue related to psychological assessment not covered in one of the previous sections. Students may choose from one of the following categories:
References (Portrait orientation must be used for the page layout of this section.)
Include a separate reference section that is formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center. The reference list must consist entirely of scholarly sources. For the purposes of this assignment, assessment manuals, the course textbook, chapters from graduate-level textbooks, chapters from professional books, and peer-reviewed journal articles may be used as resource material. A minimum of 16 unique scholarly sources including a minimum of 12 peer-reviewed articles published within the last 10 years from the Ashford University Library must be used within the Assessment Guide. The bulleted list of credible professional and/or educational online resources required for each assessment area will not count toward these totals.
Attention Students: The Masters of Arts in Psychology program is utilizing the Pathbrite portfolio tool as a repository for student scholarly work in the form of signature assignments completed within the program. After receiving feedback for this Assessment Guide, please implement any changes recommended by the instructor, go to Pathbrite and upload the revised Assessment Guide to the portfolio. (Use the Pathbrite Quick-Start Guide to create an account if you do not already have one.) The upload of signature assignments will take place after completing each course. Be certain to upload revised signature assignments throughout the program as the portfolio and its contents will be used in other courses and may be used by individual students as a professional resource tool. See the Pathbrite website for information and further instructions on using this portfolio tool.
The Assessment Guide
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