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Duration (approx) 100 hours
Qualification Statement of Attainment

Study Psychological Assessment with this great course - learn why and when to use psychological assessment.

Psychological testing is used in education, recruitment, business, mental health, forensic psychology and more.

  • Learn more about the different types of tests, such as Wechsler Intelligence and Memory Scales, Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory and much more...
  • Understand why and when psychological tests are used. Learn about the advantages and pitfalls of psychological testing.
  • Study in your own time, where you want to, and at your own pace.





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Understand more about Psychological Assessment. 

Psychological testing is used in recruitment, education, forensic psychology, mental health work and many more areas.

  • This course will provide you with a detailed insight into psychological testing in a range of different areas.



  • Study psychological tests, such as aptitude tests, occupational tests, assessment, Wechsler Intelligence Scales, SCID and much more.
  • Learn how psychological tests are used.
  • Understand the advantages and disadvantages of psychological testing.
  • A great course for anyone interested in finding out more about the use of psychological tests in the work and health environment.
  • Course Duration: 100 hours of self paced study.
  • Start Date: Start at any time.

Please note -
This course provides you with detailed information on psychological tests. It is a good introductory course to finding out more, but it does not qualify you to undertake psychological assessments.



The Psychological Assessment course is suitable for -

  • Anyone interested in learning more about how psychological assessments work and how they are used
  • Teachers
  • Mental health workers
  • Support workers
  • Care workers
  • Doctors
  • Social Workers
  • Counsellors
  • Trainee Counsellors
  • Helpline workers
  • Disability Awareness workers
  • Educational Support staff
  • And many more...



  • To explain why and how to use psychological assessment, and the different types of assessment available.



There are 7 lessons in this course, as follows:

Lesson 1.  Introduction

  • What is psychological assessment?
  • Types of psychological tests.
  • Achievement tests.
  • Aptitude tests.
  • Intelligence tests.
  • Occupational tests.
  • Personality tests.
  • History of psychological testing.
  • Justification for using tests.
  • Advantages and disadvantages of using psychometric testing.
  • Ethnicity and different cultures.
  • Psychological testing of language minority and culturally different children.
  • Why your child should be tested.
  • Why it is important for parents to know about testing.
  • Validity and reliability.
  • Construct, discriminant and convergent validity.
  • Test retest reliability.

Lesson 2.  Context of Clinical Assessment

  • Ethical practice.
  • Confidentiality.
  • Case study: confidentiality.
  • Informed consent.
  • Record keeping.
  • Dual relationships.
  • Professional boundaries.
  • Selecting tests.
  • Case study: ethics  and lie detection.
  • Computer assisted assessment.
  • Virtual reality; new tool for psychological assessment.
  • Personality traits and designing a questionnaire.
  • Weaknesses.
  • Ambiguity and bias.
  • Closed and open questions.

Lesson 3.  The Assessment Interview

  • The interview.
  • Screening for psychological disorders.
  • Structured and unstructured interviews.
  • SCID.
  • Assessing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) among veterans.
  • Screening and referral procedure overview.
  • If patient refuses referral to mental health care.
  • Use of a primary care screen.
  • Discussing screening results with patients.
  • Discern if traumatic events are ongoing.
  • Making a recommendation.
  • Scheduling a follow up.
  • Psychometric properties of SCID.

Lesson 4.  Behavioural Assessment

  • Behaviourism.
  • Kinds of consequences.
  • Reinforcers.
  • Intrinsic and extrinsic reinforcers.
  • Consequences and timing.
  • The Premack principle.
  • Extinction.
  • Criticisms of behaviourism.
  • Methods of behavioural assessment.
  • The focus of assessment.
  • Functional analysis.
  • Analysis of problem behaviour.
  • Motivational analysis.
  • Behavioural vs traditional assessment.

Lesson 5.  Wechsler Intelligence Scales

  • Introduction.
  • Measuring intelligence.
  • Cognitive, cognitive contextual and biological theories.
  • Psychometric theories.
  • Wechsler Intelligence scales.
  • Normal results.
  • Sub tests, verbal subtests, performance subtests.
  • Cultural bias.
  • Precautions with intelligence testing.
  • The intelligence test as a tool.

Lesson 6.  Wechsler Memory scales

  • Memory.
  • Wechsler Memory test.
  • Wechsler Memory Scale III.

Lesson 7.  Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory

  • Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) Assessment
  • False negatives; false positives.



  • Explain the main kinds of psychological tests and why they are used, and meaning of test reliability and validity.
  • Explain ethical and other factors that constrain clinical assessment.
  • Describe a structured and an unstructured interview.
  • Explain behavioural assessment and how it can be conducted.
  • Discuss Wechsler scales in detail.
  • Explain the purpose and use of the Wechsler Memory Test.
  • Explain the purpose and usage of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory.



  • Consider why are reliability and validity important in Psychological Assessment (500 words)?
  • List and describe the different types of validity.
  • List and describe the different types of reliability.  
  • Discuss the advantage and disadvantages of using psychometric tests.
  • What are the following tests used for – a) Achievement tests? b) Aptitude tests? c) Intelligence tests? d) Occupational tests?
  • Consider - Have you ever taken a group or individual achievement or intelligence test? If so: 
    a) Describe your general impressions of the test and the testing situation. b) Describe your perceptions of the purposes of administering the tests. c) What outcomes occurred as a result of your participation? What impact (if any) did the test taking experience(s) have on your life? d) How you felt during testing. What factors might have enhanced or negatively affected your performance? What sources of error may have been operating? If you have not taken such a test, ask someone who has.
    What do you consider characteristics of a "good" test and a "bad" test?
    Give different examples of test formats (e.g., computerized tests). What has your own experience been with computerized tests? How do the advantages of computer-assisted psychological assessment from the standpoint of the test user, compare to your perceptions as the test taker?
    Using your friends’ comments on the test you designed in the set task, discuss how you could improve your questionnaire.



The interview is only one of many tools used for psychological assessment. Interviews are used in many different ways, for example; by employers to select staff, by colleges to screen students and by welfare workers to assess clients.

An interview is different to a conversation or a counselling session.  It is a planned conversation that will discuss or ask questions about a particular topic or area of a person’s life. It is possibly the most important area of data collection during an assessment because it gives meaning to other forms of data. For instance, if someone scored in the significant range for clinical depression on a depression inventory yet they presented as happy, optimistic, and confident at interview, the validity of the test findings may be questionable and further assessment would be needed.   

The interview is also used to develop rapport with a client and interview data can be used to provide information which cannot be garnered from tests or other means. For example, it offers the opportunity to gain insight into how the client reacts to their current life situation, and their unique thoughts, behaviours and reactions.

Structured and semi-structured interviews are designed to reduce variability that makes diagnoses unreliable.  They do this by standardising the content, order of questions and format to enable diagnostic conclusions to be reached from the information provided in accordance with a specific diagnostic framework, such as the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). The use of structured and semi-structured interviews is now standard in research settings and their use is widespread. 

There is no one test that will fit all requirements for researchers and clinicians.  When choosing a test, a number of issues must be considered:

  • The context in which the interview is to be used
  • Psychometric qualities
  • Degree of structure – structured, or unstructured, or semi structured
  • Diagnostic coverage - does the test diagnose only certain conditions?
  • Who will administer the test?  
  • Availability of support for its use 
  • The specific needs of the interviewer; including resources, priorities, and validity.  
    There are a range of structured and semi-structured interviews in widespread use.  All are designed for adult populations and used for the assessment of symptom syndromes.

Structured interviews are more direct and so less likely to run over time. Unstructured approaches may not be suitable to some types of profiling e.g. a mental health profile of someone suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder since it could exacerbate their anxiety levels. In spite of the level of structure, all interviews should aim to achieve particular goals such as eliciting information about specific problems, personal history, the client's current situation, and so forth. 

Interviews can be viewed in several main ways such as face-to-face, online, via telephone, or via Skye. For the purposes of psychological assessment, face-to-face is the most useful since the interviewer has access to a whole range of verbal and non-verbal cues some of which may be masked by other forms of interview. 


Psychological tests are used in many different fields - psychiatric services, personnel, training, workplaces, health services and many more.

  • A knowledge of psychological tests can be a useful addition to your CV in you work in these fields.
  • If you are interested in learning more about psychological testing, then why not enrol today!
  • This course provides you with detailed information on psychological tests. It is a good introductory course to finding out more, but it does not qualify you to undertake psychological assessments.



At ACS we provide you with more than just a set of course notes.

Your 'learning package' includes:

  • Course notes.
  • Self-assessment quizzes.
  • Assignment feedback.
  • You can interact one on one with a professional tutor with decades of experience - just email, phone or log on to chat to connect with them.



Enrolling is easy - you can start your studies at any time - just go to the top of this page.

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Meet some of our academics

Tracey Jones (writing)Tracey has enjoyed creative writing since she was a child. She has had several short stories published and a novella. She is also a keen writer of children's stories and poetry. She has also written many academic and non-fiction books in the fields of psychology, sociology, child development, writing and marketing.
Kate Gibson B.Soc.Sc.15+ years experience in HR, marketing, education & project management. Kate has traveled and worked in a variety of locations including London, New Zealand and Australia.

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