PROJECTIVE TECHNIQUES: A PERCEPTUAL APPROACH
All the personality-measuring techniques we have discussed have been based upon the theory that responses to test items must be controlled. They must be controlled, it is thought, so that we can determine what they mean. Imagine our problem, for example, if we did not provide a limited number of responses to the items in the Strong Vocational Interest Test or in the Bernreuter Personality Inventory. As it is, there still are an enormous variety of responses available. Let us stop and figure a moment. To each item on the Strong Vocational Interest Test a subject can respond with an L, an I, or a D. So if we consider just two items, there are the following nine possible responses:
|Item I||Item 2|
When we add a third item, the number of possible responses increases to 27. But there are 400 items in Dr. Strong's test, so the total number of possible responses is 3400, that is, 3 raised to the 400th power. We do not need to figure this out to realize that we have an enormous number on our hands.
Of course, not all tests provide for as many possible responses as