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Personality Test by Meyer and Kurtz

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An individual tends to create personal point of view on various situations, uncovering his or her personality, problems and psychological peculiarities. However, standard approach might appear ineffective in unique cases while examining each person individually: psychologist might be misled by unorganized information. That is why, methodological studying of psychological analysis are divided into two main groups according to the specific of each case.

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Personality tests help to determine psychological habitude of people, mostly independent of the situation and the time-constant. These tests are open for human interpretation, identifying its relatively stable traits. The main purpose of personality tests is to identify how a person behaves in certain situations or address a range of issues. Personality tests examine such psychological personality traits as temperament, aggressiveness, anxiety, level of aspiration. In objective personality tests, interpretation principles covered from the subjects.

Despite the fact, that objective personality assessments could be misleadingly understood as the most adequate type of test, their main difference is concentrated on the standard model of thinking. In other words, Meyer (223) emphasise that predisposition of developed answers in objective tests limit fair and complex self analysis, that is why name “objective test” should be understood primarily as predetermined.

Projective personality assessments primarily refer to interpretation process as the main method of psychoanalysis. Uncertainties that appear during analysis of individual cases and personal bias  by the complexity of cases and interrelation between person’s reaction, behaviour and psychological peculiarities as each answer is unique and majority of hints and regularities in  person’s behaviour are predetermined by psychological conditions of the individual, his or her age, individual perception and imagination.

Projective personality tests influence personal identification techniques deepest personality structure. Methods of this type are predisposed reveal interdependence between unconscious needs and processes involve projection of the external world, manifested in the idiosyncrasies of human actions.

In order to get an external projection of the unconscious, the individual should answer spontaneously, reacting naturally on certain situations. The most important interconnection between projective tests and their symbolic expression is certain activities or preferences and profound characteristics of the human psyche.

In other words, accuracy of data, obtained during the psychological analysis, depends on each case. According to Meyer (223), objective tests stop being objective due to their narrowness and limitation, while projective tests may not be fully systematized and controlled. Terminology, widespread in methodological courses as objective and projective personality tests has inappropriate connotations that will not reveal the field according to the main aim concentrated on understanding of assessment methods (Meyer, 224).

Underlining necessity of substitution in terminology, Meyer (224) suggests classifying personality tests according to their perceptual difference. The author emphasize that the sourse of perception as the main criterion in classification form concepts of “visual tests” and “nonvisual tests” with the with observable elements of perception in contrary with tactile ones. This classification satisfies primarily important determination of conceptual impact on tested individual.

Frank (25) notes that while standard objective tests give a prompt for the individual projective tests do not supply a person with predisposed and developed answers leaving room for auto expression of the tested man or woman. Frank (24) suggests classification of projective tests, based on the specific of an individual’s reaction, enumerating interpretive, cathartic and constructive types.

According this classification, constructive type of projective personality tests based on the way of expression that reveals certain parallels in perception of objects in reality that influence psychological conditions by analogy as in Rorschach inkblots. In this psychological test, individual’s imagination appears free to suggest its own interpretation of objective reality, ability to understand and synchronize logically structured objects, ability to correlate and distinguish realistic and imaginary objects and conditions.

Interpretive tests involve situational reaction on proposed conditions. During this test, development of story, characters or other scenario based actions, presented as the raw material for the individual’s story telling. The main idea of this test is the story progression, based on rational development of plot, humanism and believability. Interpretive tests could also demonstrate individual’s hierarchy of ethical values.

Cathartic type of tests based on a person’s possibility to reveal emotions and feelings through the various psychological role games. The practical use of these tests organized as the role-play. This type of tests devoted to the self-perception, analyzing individual’s possibility to feel sympathy, criticize and understand other people. These tests help to identify correlation between unique of a person’s perception and general interpretation.

Constructive type is oriented on the possibility of a person to show his or her skills of systematization and modeling by the creation of certain objects out of proposed materials. The adequacy, patience and concentration during this process reveal healthy psychological system and general success in building and constricting show intellectual productivity.

Different types of psychological tests in this classification may occur in the same test, used as the combination of constructive, cathartic and interpretive types that may influence a person on all levels. Rorschach inkblots test based on the possibility of tested person to reveal his or her own feelings and ideas in his/her own way.

Analyzing subjectivity of human perception, one can notice that variation of answers based on personal interpretation of the recipient are often part of their own experience, identification of reality and imagination. In other words, Rorschach inkblots test helps to analyze psychological features by individual’s projection. The regularities, noticed in interpretation of main inkblots vary according to personal peculiarities, such as age, gender, personality, cultural background and knowledge of patients.

Rorschach inkblots test is a psychological technique that functions to determine the condition of the human psyche and his or her personal traits. Rorschach test consists of ten inkblots that symmetrically painted on the vertical axis. Looking at these spots, patient interpret the test in the free form describes his associations. This technique reveals relationship between the perception of spots and psychological characteristics of man, so the responses can help to diagnose analyze personality.

Rorschach claimed that it is not a test of imagination, and creativity of a person's imagination does not significantly alter the result. It is, Rorschach claimed, that inkblots test  do not orients on the process of tactile perception that is too subjective. However, huge diversity of criteria spread the amount of mental peculiarities open for analysis (Rorschach, 2).

Age and background knowledge

Interrelation between age and details of perceived images are the results of personal experience. Children use their imagination to identify unknown objects. On the other hand, analyzing perception of an adult individual, interpretation of Rorschach inkblots are part of rationalization of depicted objects, in other words, adult would interpret images according to their existence under the laws of nature and logical coexistence of objects depicted on pictures (Loucks, 591).

The background knowledge, level of education and personal enhancement impact individual’s perception of Rorschach inkblots. Working with adult educated person psychologist used to face with complex images and comparison with familiar images and objects.

Mental disorder

Rorschach emphasized that one of the main purposes of the test is to function as a research tool for accurate analysis of different psychopathology” (Rorschach, 1). In the case of testing individual, predisposed to schizophrenia, one can notice different variants of misperception, because answers are not under the single pattern.

In the process of discovering patterns of reaction on the inkblot test, Rorschach and his associates administered it to subjects from several psychological groups.

One can identify the perception of mentally ill person as inconsecutive, often filled with images of few objects in the same space. The outlines of images are distorted, stretched and reorganized. Sometimes a single image superimposed on the other and obscured it.

Patients form images as a mixed figure and ground that is not highlighted border between the white and colored objects that appears as a single image. These patients often ignore logical or temporal aspects, laws of nature, habitual behavior, norms and formal systematization, showing mainly aggression and other negative emotions (Exner, 53).

Gender and psychopathology

Considering gender as one of the factors that reflect sexual and emotional predisposition among people with schizophrenia diagnose, men expressed their feelings in plain, superficial and incoherent way. Male patients represented their point of view in a calm and pacific way, however, in certain cases expressed exclusive fascination (Viglione, 283).

Furthermore, considering the patient as a woman with schizophrenia, one can identify such peculiarities as predisposition to optimistic and positive perception, noticed as emotionally controlled, but could easily become touching. Such an emotional perception relaxed and influences their general perception making them feel better (Viglione, 283).

Projection

Besides being reveal unconscious aspects of personality. Using the entire inkblot is said to indicate integrative, conceptual thinking, whereas the use of a high proportion of small details suggests compulsive rigidity. A relatively frequent use of white space is a sign of rebelliousness and negativism. Responses that describe humans in the movement are said to indicate imagination and a rich inner life; responses that dominate by color suggest emotionality and impulsivity (Gleitman,  684).

Rorschach inkblots test  analysis pays attention not only to the answer, given by the tested person, but also studies mechanisms of response. The main object of investigation  is the scope of characteristics covered under the mask of perception.

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Peculiarities in organization of space, light and color on images reveal the gist of image perception. Elements and shades on pictures organized neutrally, leaving space for imagination.  The amount of elements involved in image representation reflects intellectual peculiarities and basic knowledge while material and color reveal emotional perception and personal attitude to certain objects, people and animals, self-representation. Actions, dialogues and other dynamics reveal attitude to certain social norms. All criteria taken from the Rorschach inkblots explanation are meaningful their reveal covered peculiarities of human character. 

Bias takes place when spare factors influence test results and cause them to be less important for some people than others. Ethnically influences spheres of perception in human life corresponds certain regularities and bias occurs when test results appeared more ambiguous for a minority group relative to the majority group (Meyer, 113).

Distinguishing regularities and standard images appeared in the consciousness highly motivated by European tradition historically based on ethnicity and historical symbolism. As a result, ethnical minorities, whose cultural heritage carries another symbolism, coloristic and reflective associations, as a result can not be considered an effective method for psychological determination.

Test classification

Finally, to identify the main purpose, classification and usage of Rorschach test, it is important to refresh previous terminology, presented by Meyer (223) and Frank (25). The authors’ methodological investigations examine conditions and peculiarities of practical implementation of Rorschach inkblots personality assessment. The projective assessment in comparison with objective multiple-choice assessments vary in demonstrates of inner potential of patients, whereas, limited test answers could spoil results and confuse patients (Grossman, 484).

To sum up, the widespread theory about general classification of personality assessments suggests that personality tests could be objective and projective. Whereas objective tests suggests multiple-choice answer, projective tests are characterized as assessments in which examined person is free to formulate his or her own perception of the test. Meyer (223) suggests that these terms can not fully reflect meaning purpose of these tests while terms visual and non-visual tests are more appropriate to be used in the broad sense.

Supporting standard terminology, Frank (25) suggests further determination of projective tests as interpretive assessment with images and pictures, cathartic, based on the ability to concentrate on role-play and constructive type, oriented on logical puzzles.

One of these methods based on perception of images and their logical interpretation, which is called Rorschach test. This projective or visual test projective test based on the parties to consider the ten horizontally symmetrical inkblots, which consequently should be interpret by the examined person which should explain what he or she sees. Responses indicate different characteristics such as emotional responsiveness, or personality traits.

Taking into account fact that one of the main purposes of Rorschach test is discovering psychopathology, examined individual recommended herself as adult educated person with schizophrenia. In the course of examination, the patient showed individual interpretation of

Rorschach test as the analysis of behavior patterns: unnatural combination of objects and situations, incredible flexibility, total independence of materials and elements, depicted on pictures. Aggression and bloodlines were irrelevant for tested individual, majority of descriptions were expressive and precipitous, but in general demonstrative. 

Rorschach test is one of the first projective (visual) tests and one of the most efficient. However, psychopathology is not the only purpose for this test. Rorschach inkblots function as psychological mirror that reflects unique perception and individual peculiarities of each person’s needs. Composed as the complex image, test contains elements that are efficient in their formal ambiguity.

The creator of this test regarded it as sector-specific invention. However, Rorschach inkblots test appeared universal for complex psychoanalysis. Nevertheless, further implementation revealed certain deficiency: this test cannot clarify the diagnosis in the case if the patient’s cultural background of European tradition.

In spite of certain difficulties, advancement of the Rorschach inkblots test reveal new perspective in psychological analysis based on individual interpretation that is not limited by predisposed answers of standard tests.

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