John Suler's Teaching Clinical Psychology

Handout 1 for the

Test Battery Project

This handout instructs students how to write the paper describing the character they will be role-playing while they take the test battery.

How Your Character Will Respond to the Test Battery
psychological test battery

When you respond to the tests in the battery, you will be playing a role. It may be someone you know, a character from a book or movie, or a purely imaginary character that you create. Playing this role means responding to the various tests as if you were that person and also interacting with the tester as if you were that person. Beforehand, give careful consideration to what this person is like and how they will respond to the testing situation. The character may be a "normal" person with various characteristics, strengths, and flaws (shy, intelligent, artistic, controlling, etc.) or a person suffering from some kind of physical or psychological problem (depression, schizophrenia, cancer, brain damage, etc.). Try to bring a sense of realism and depth to the character.

In a short paper (2-3 typed pages) describe your character. Divide the paper into the following three sections:

A description (1/2 -1 page) of the person you will be playing: his/her personality, interpersonal relationships, intelligence level, skills, habits, lifestyle, occupation, brief history, symptoms (if any), etc.

Also explain briefly why the person is being tested. Did someone refer the person for testing, such as a doctor, employer, teacher? Is the person in therapy or in a hospital and has been referred for an assessment? Did the person seek the testing on his/her own? Is he/she part of a research study?

A brief description of how the person will act during the testing session (i.e., how he/she interacts with the tester, his/her mood and behaviors while taking the tests, etc.)

A brief description of how the person will respond to EACH TEST in the battery and how those responses reveal his/her personality and psycho- logical problems. Discuss the following:

Rorschach: use of color, form, shading, movement, etc.

WAIS: overall IQ, verbal versus performance IQ, strengths and weaknesses on specific subtests

MMPI: performance on validity scales; low and high scores on the clinical scales

TAT: dominant themes in the stories, ideas and emotions of the central characters in the stories, types of interpersonal relationships between the characters, the qualities of the stories told (i.e., formal analysis)

Bender-Gestalt: any errors indicating neurological brain problems?


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