Ethical and Legal Aspects in Psychological Testing

ETHICAL AND LEGAL ISSUES IN PSYCHOLOGICAL TESTING 5

Ethicaland Legal Aspects in Psychological Testing

1.One of themostcriticalethicalissuesthat haveto beobservedwhenadministeringpsychologicaltestingis theprospectof facilitatinginformedconsentto theentireassessmentprocess.Itfollowsthatthepsychologisthas to ensurethatallbarriersto effectivecommunicationare addressedto facilitateproperunderstandingbetween thetwo parties.Theclientis entitledto completeinformationregardingthepurposeof thetest,thedurationof thetest,andall theproceduresto beusedamong otherrelatedaspects(Butcher,2009). Thereasonbehind informedconsentis to facilitatethecreationof a legalcontractbetween thetwo parties.Theinterestsof theclientare safeguarded in thisrespect(Hogan, 2007).

Hogan(2007), goesaheadto notethattheotherethicaltraitin psychologicaltestingis confidentiality. Itlimitsthechancesof thepsychologistexposingtheresultsof theclientin a differentforumwithout his consent.Thepsychologistalsohas an ethicalobligationof ensuringthathekeepstherecordsin a confidentialmannerto limitchancesof theinformationbeingcompromisedby athirdparty.

Thesetwo ethicaltraitsare quiteessentialin psychologicaltestingin thesensethattheyhelpthefieldof psychologyto restoreits dignityandreliability.Theyhelptheclientsto trusttheservicesof psychologistswhoendup helpingthem to overcomeissuespertainingmentalhealthandotherrelatedactivities.

2.Themostformidablelegalaspectthatpsychologistshaveto observeis ensuringthatthere isan appropriateaccommodationin relationto thelawas spelt out in theAmericans with Disabilities Act enactedin 1990. Thislawrequiresthatpsychologistsmakeadequatearrangementsto ensurethatthedisabledclientsgetadequateaccommodationduring thetestingperiod.Italsoholdsthatsuchindividualsshould be providedwith visualorhearinggadgetsin casetheyhavesuchdeficiencies.Psychologistshavean obligationto provideaccommodationsandothernecessarygadgetsto avoidscenarioswheretheyappearto takeadvantageof their clients(Hogan, 2007).

Discriminationiscitedas anotheraspectthat has legalimplications.Thelawprovidesthatthepsychologistsshould avoidanyformsof discriminationthat may bebasedon age,race,color,genderorothersocialtraitswhenadministeringsuchtests.According to Butcher (2009) Psychologistsare discouragedfrom undertakingteststhat may endup resultingin discriminatoryprocesses,adverselyaffectindividualsbased on anyoutlawedcriteriaorproducingunfairresults.

Thesetwo essentiallegalissuesreflecttheconcernsthatthesocietyhas whenitcomesto participatingin psychologicaltests.It,thereof, followsthatclientshaveto receivefairtreatmentandbe giventhenecessaryaccommodationby thepsychologistsin question.

3.Thecasethat hadthelargestimpactis theLarry P. v Riles, which producedviewsconcerningdiscriminatoryactivitiesthat arewitnessedin thetestingactivities.Thesetestingpracticeswereconcernedwith thediagnosisof learningdisabilitiesand,ormentalretardation.Thecaseillustratestheurgentneedof propertestingtechniques,which incorporateadequatetraitsof understandinganddeterminingtheextentof intelligenceamong theclients.Jacob et al (2011) argue that there is alsoa sectionof thiscasethat concentrateson bias in thewaypsychologicaltestsare conductedthusraisingnumerousquestions.

Thiscaseoutlinesbiases,flaws,andimpropertechniquesusedby psychologistsin testinglevels of intelligenceamong individuals.Italsoaffectsbehavioral assessmentsandattitudeassessmentsof theclients,which placestheentireaspectof psychologicaltestingin crisis.There must be aneedfortheapplicationof numerouscodesof conductandlawsto helpin streamlining andsafeguarding theinterestsof allpartiesinvolvedin theentiretestingprocess(Jacobet al., 2011). Evidencethat isobtainedfrom thiscaseshowsthatpsychologistshaveenoughroomto improveby workingon minimizingtheactivitiesthat seemto limitthequalityof theresultsandtheentireprocessof obtainingthem.

References

Butcher,J. N. (2009). OxfordHandbook of Personality Assessment.Oxford: Oxford University Press, USA.

Hogan,T.P. (2007). Psychologicaltesting: A practical introduction(2nd Ed.). Retrieved from The University of Phoenix eBook Collectiondatabase.

Jacob,S., Decker, D. M., &amp Hartshorne, T. S. (2011). Ethicsand law for school psychologists.Hoboken, N.J: J. Wiley &amp Sons.