How Honesty Testing Works

By John B. Miner; Michael H. Capps | Go to book overview

5
Assessing Honesty Tests: Reliability of Measurement, Question Characteristics, Test Dimensions, Applicant Reactions, and Fakability

When making a decision about using an honesty test, the most important thing to look for is demonstrated validity for people and purposes as similar as possible to those you will use the test with and for. The evidence from metaanalyses is useful, but it will not replace knowing that a test really will accomplish what you want in organizations like yours.

After validity, however, there are a number of other aspects of the tests that are important. Test publishers tend to discuss them, especially if they have evidence on the matter, and they should. If they do not, then inquiries should be made. Either way, these are considerations, inherent in the tests themselves, about which a decision maker needs information before deciding to adopt a test. The five factors noted in the title of this chapter do involve some requirements for psychological measurement and statistical understanding, but none of these requirements are any more complex than those involved in understanding the validation process set forth in Chapter 3.

Although there is no real substitute for having detailed information on these topics, something one should learn about in any event is the professional stature of the psychologist(s) involved. Who created the test items and did the test development work? The more signs of professional stature on the resumé, the more likely it is that an individual has been evaluated favorably by his or her peers. A Ph.D. from a major university, holding important professional positions either in the academic world or business, state licensure as a psychologist, and publications are important. Where the publications appear is important also. An idea of what to look for may be gained from the citations sprinkled throughout this book, and presented in full in the Bibliography.

Membership, holding office, and fellow status in relevant professional associations is another consideration. These associations would include the American

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