What are the advantages and disadvantages of using objective personality tests verses projective personality tests?
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Projective personality tests are very open ended - an example of a projective personality test is the classic inkblot test. The benefits of using projective personality tests is that they can help us to see what the person is strugling with internally. However, projective personality tests require special training to administer and are not standardized, which means they may not be reliable or valid.
An objective personality test is a standardized test, such as the MMPI-2. The benefit of this test is that it is standardized, so it is valid and reliable. The disadvantage of using an objective personality test is that an individual can easily lie on the test.
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You certainly have put your finger on the exact problem with objective personality tests when you say, "The disadvantage of using an objective personality test is that an individual can easily lie on the test." These tests are typically used to evaluate and classify job applicants, and people who really want or need a job will be tempted to answer questions not based on the truth but on how it will make them look. The people who make up these objective tests usually expect the test-takers to lie, so they often ask the same question several times in slightly different terms. The job applicant recognizes this trickery, and the test becomes a game of wits. Employers are usually looking for "team players" and "self-starters" who are loyal, dependable, and all sorts of other good things. It is unfortunate that many young people lie their way into jobs they are really not suited for or happy with, just because they need money. It would be so much better if people evaluated themselves beforehand and then went out looking for a job that would fit them, rather than hoping to fit the job.
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