For My Students | Admin/Research | PSY | CTL | WKU 

Frequently Asked Questions on Tests

How can I obtain a copy of a psychological test?

Purchase of these manuals is restricted to individuals with professional credentials and licensing. If the content is widely revealed, then the test items become invalid.

Test items are constructed to measure a particular quality, such as intelligence. Their difficulty is often identified by comparing how a large sample of people (called a standardization sample) perform on the item. If a person performs well on an item because the individual had advanced knowledge of the task that the standardization sample did not have, then the item no longer measures intelligence but "unfair" knowledge.

How can I take an psychological test?

If you are interested in taking an intelligence test, contact a psychologist in private practice (look in the phone book yellow pages under Psychologists) or check with a graduate program in clinical or school psychology at a university near you. Sometimes they need persons for their students to practice administration. Results from a practice administration may not be released as they are considered invalid.

Can I take an intelligence test over the Internet?

At this time, I know of no reliable and valid intelligence measure available via the Internet. The best versions (most reliable and valid) are designed for face-to-face administration. Also, whatever intelligence test you take needs to be a version appropriate for your culture and native language. A local psychologist could provide you with better advice for your particular situation.

Can you help me with a testing problem I am having?

Sometimes people contact me asking me to interpret test results they've received from an assessment. It is illegal and unethical for me to practice outside of the state of Kentucky, where I am licensed. I recommend you speak to the test administrator about your concerns and ask what your options are.

Who is the publisher of [??] test? How can I find out more about a particular test?

Try the searchable ERIC website at

You don't know me but I have a paper due on Monday.....

First, my irritations: if you are asking a favor, formulate a polite and professional E-mail. I am a person, not a machine. Please treat me as one. The number of people who ask for help without even giving their name, and location or institution amazes me. Please do not use all capital letters, that is the equivalent of shouting on the Internet. I do enjoy conversing with people all over the world about testing and like to know to whom I am speaking-- that is my reward for maintaining this website.

Second, my advise: demonstrate to me that you have done your homework by asking a specific focused question that can be answered in a paragraph. My students are paying for my time with their tuition. You are asking for a contribution. If you don't care enough to expend significant effort on completing your homework, why should I?

Finally, my expectations: I expect that you will properly cite my contribution, and not plagiarize my expressions, using quotation marks to indicate my exact words or else paraphrasing and referencing our E-mail correspondance or my webpages. It is a question of scholarship and honesty to do so. On the Internet, anyone can post anything. It is your obligation as a writer and student to justify and demonstrate the quality of information you gather by providing the source.

My question doesn't appear here??

If you don't find your question here, I recommend you visit Frequently Asked Questions about Psychological Tests (, provided by APA's Science Directorate.

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For My Students | Admin/Research | PSY | CTL | WKU 


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Website created: June 1996. Page Created: August 21, 1999; Last Modified: November 13, 2000.