Psychology question.

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How would you account for the differences between the characteristics evidenced in the MMPI and what is observed in the patient? What do you think has better validity and reliability, the standardized instrument or a personal observation, and why?

response has to be 200 words with two refrences

The personality assessment technique used in this scenario involves four major paradigms. These are the Minnesota multiphasic personality inventory, the mental status examination, the review of prior psychological assessments and the clinical interview. All these elements are included to give the evaluation a more holistic outlook as opposed to a rather narrow outlook that would be offered by just one of these elements. In this instance the standard use of personality assessment is the extrapolation of the characteristic traits of an individual. Personality assessment refers to a series of procedures aimed at investigating the disposition of an individual based on some aspects of their lives and therefore drawing an inference about the personality of the individual in question. Personality assessment techniques involve a series of procedures with a scientific inclination. As such, they are free of the prejudices of the individual carrying out the assessment. This is with reference to the person carrying out the assessment attaching their own personal paradigms to the assessment especially on the subconscious level.

One of the major aspects of question in any personality assessment scenario is the reliability of the tools used in the assessment. In this essence the term reliability refers to the degree to which the test procedures offer results that are stable and coherent. The validity of the procedures used on the patient is evident from the results of the Minnesota multiphasic personality inventory. The results of this inventory are coherent with reference to the nature of the personality they tend to ascribe to the patient. An example is the depression level which is found to be high (Archer, 2013). This is further strengthened by the high scores that the patient has on the symptoms for depression.

Validity is yet another important aspect of a personality assessment scheme. Validity refers to the level to which a test can in actuality measure a paradigm that it is intended to measure. It tends to investigate the relevance of the tests with reference to the traits that they are intended to evaluate. In the given scenario the validity of the tests is subject to scrutiny. There seems to be a contrast when it comes to the mental status examination and the results from the Minnesota multiphasic personality inventory. The results from the latter show that the patient is very unstable and at a very high risk of committing suicide. This is contrary to the results of the former which portray the patient as being rather stable and in control of their emotional disposition. This brings into question the validity of one of these two procedures due to the fact that there is a sharp contrast in the inference they allude to.

An ethical issue arising from the scenario is that of informed consent. This is with reference to the amount of information that the patient would like to reveal to the practitioner. Another ethical issue that may arise in this scenario is that of confidentiality. The analysis yields some information which is very sensitive in nature especially from the perspective of the patient. The number of people who the practitioner can share this information with has to be limited to the bare essentials. This is necessary in order to protect the privacy and mental well-being of the patient. Such information should be handled with the very highest levels of confidentiality so as to preserve the mental piece of mind of the patient. The psychologist may also be required to act as an expert witness. This raises an ethical issue as the psychologist will be required to reveal details of the analysis. Such revelations should only be made in an instance where it is mandatory and in the best interest of the patient. This is meant to ensure that such sensitive information cannot be used against the patient by unscrupulous parties.

The personality analysis can be enhanced through the incorporation of overt behavior. This basically involves an overlay analysis of a number of factors such as the past of an individual and the current physical state of the individual. The aim here is to harmonize these aspects in order to arrive at a conclusive inference about the personality of the individual in question. This will aid in creating a more complete and credible assessment of the patient in the scenario (Vernon, 2011). The harmonization of a number of factors attributed to the patient is likely to create a line of best fit that is suitable in analyzing the personality traits of the individual in question.


Archer, R.. (2013). Personality assessment. New York: Routledge.

Vernon, P. E. (2011). Personality Assesment: A Critical Survey. London: Methuen.

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