Psychological tests are formalized measures of mental functioning. Also known as, inventories, measurements, questionnaires, and scales, psychological tests. Achievement, intelligence, and ability tests are designed to measure the level of a patient’s intellectual functioning and cognitive ability.

Personality tests and inventories evaluate the thoughts, emotions, attitudes, and behavioral traits that comprise personality. When interpreting test results, we review with patients what the test evaluates, its accuracy in evaluation, any limitations involved in interpretations, and overall results.

Standard Components to a Psychological Evaluation

  • Semi-structured background interview
  • Structured Diagnostic Interview
  • General Brief Measure of Psychopathology (Symptoms Check List SCL-90-R, PHQ-9, GAD-7)
  • Specific measures that address the referral question (CPT, WISC, WIAT, Vineland etc)
  • If applicable, interviews/measures completed by collaterals (BASC Parent/Teacher, Connors, Previous testing reports/info)
  • Review of Records

Additional Components

  • IQ and/or Achievement testing
  • Personality Assessments
  • Neuropsychological Screeners
  • School Observations

Areas of Functioning to Assess:

  • HX (Semi-structured background interview, developmental hx, etc).
  • Cognitive & Neurological Functioning (WAIS, WISC, WMS, Bender Gestalt)
  • Emotional Functioning (SCL-90, BDI, BAI, BYI, PHQ-9. GAD-7)
  • Inter/Intrapersonal Functioning (MMPI, MCMI)
  • Prognosis & Risk (Suicide potential Beck Hopelessness Scale, Risk of Future Violent Behavior Hx Clinical Risk Management HCR-20)
  • Patient Strengths (important step)

Types of Inventories Used

Achievement tests

Often designed to measure previously attained degree of mastery or ability in particular area, generally used to assess the impact academic experiences:

  • The Wechsler Individual Achievement Test (WIAT)
  • Woodcock-Johnson

Interest Inventories

Measures likes and dislikes, values, and other preferences often used in career counseling.

  • Strong Interest Inventory
  • Meyers-Briggs
  • Career Assessment Inventory
  • Self Directed Search

Personality Inventories

Often global in scope, measure emotional style of pt or aspects of self-esteem or self concept, often used in life stressors, developmental difficulties, relationship issues or career choices

  • California Psychological Inventory (CPI)
  • MMPI
  • MCMI
  • Coopersmith Self Esteem Inventories
  • Taylor Johnson Temperament Analysis
  • MACI or M-PACI

Broadband Social/Behavioral/Emotional Screeners

  • Beck Youth Inventories

Narrowband social/emotional/behavioral questionnaires


Developmental Screeners

  • DP3
  • Ages and Stages Questionnaire-Social Emotional (ASQ-SE)
  • Vineland

Neuropsychological Screeners

  • K-SNAP (Kaufman Short Neuro Assessment Protocol)
  • Beery VMI (Visual Motor Integration)
  • Stroop Color Word Test
  • Trails A & B
  • Purdue Peg Board
  • Symbol Digit Modalities