The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory and the Armed Services Vocational Battery are tests that are utilized in the measurement of various abilities and personality dispositions of the test takers. Whereas the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory is used for civilian cases as well, the armed services vocational battery is specifically tailored to meet the testing requirements for people interested in serving in the armed forces. Below is a look at each of these tests.
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Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory
The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory came into existence in the 1930s. It was put together at the University of Minnesota hence the name Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory. It is divided into scales on which the behavior of the test takers is classified. From the time it was developed, several variants such as the MMPI -2 have been developed for purposes of including elements and constituencies that were left out of the initial development (Gotts 2005, pp.19-21). Among the constituencies that were left out whose sets have been developed include adolescents. The specific test that has been developed for adolescents is given the name MPPI-A; which stands for the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory for Adolescents. The original Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory had ten scales. Most of the scales have been maintained while others have undergone dramatic revision to accommodate new realities. These new changes are covered in the MMPI-2.In this research paper; the original scales will be covered.
The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory is divided into the following original clinical scales: Scale number zero is for people who are social introverts, scale number two is for people who are affected by depression, scale number three is for hysterical individuals, scale number four is psychotic people while scaling number five deals with masculinity and femininity aspects of character. There is also scale number six which deals with paranoia, scale number seven which is for psychasthenia, scale number eight for schizophrenia, and scale number nine for hypomania. Also, three crucial scales called the scales of validity are also available to help in determining how valid the results obtained are.
This test is in wide usage in both civilian and military categories and the original test characteristics reign supreme even in the variants. The most important thing to point out about the tests is that the scales are not in black and while in that an individual who is not entirely schizophrenic may fall into scale number eight. In this case, it is the expertise of the clinical psychologist who is administering the test who should be able to tell the difference and explain the interpreted results to the interested parties including the test taker. These grey areas are some of the shortcomings that the variants were developed to eradicate. Several factors must be taken into account when the test is being administered. These factors include the social class of the test taker, the age of the test taker, the sex, the level of education of the test taker, the residential area, the religious affiliation or background of the test taker, the medical history of the test taker, the marital status of the test taker, and the nature of past experiences if any. These factors always have a big effect on the outcome and it is the responsibility of the clinical psychologist administering the test to know how they impact the result.
The Armed Services Vocational Battery (ASVB)
This test was developed in 1968 solely for the utilization of the military. By the later 1970s, all wings of the armed forces had begun making use of the test in their recruitment efforts (Grayson2002, pp.12-15). In modern times, each area of the military has its level of scores that possible recruits are supposed to attain in the ASVB.
The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory and the Armed Services Vocational Battery in the military
The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory has the sole aim of determining the personality of the test taker. The military finds it useful in determining the suitability of recruits in terms of character. What does the military look for when administering the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory?
The men and women in uniform are exposed to numerous situations where breaking down is possible due to the nature of the actions taking place. The outcome of a breakdown in a battleground due to the emotional nature of the circumstances can be the difference between victory and defeat. It is therefore necessary that the men and women who are given the chance to serve in the armed forces are of outstanding emotional strength. The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory can expose the character defects that can signal weakness in emotions and therefore the inability to serve.
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This is a key element in military service. Several terms are used to describe this quality such as leadership ability and courage under fire but control is the simplest way to describe it. As shown by the various elements in the ten scales, individuals who are depressed, hypomaniac, schizophrenic, paranoid, or hysterical are not able to show any degree of control, which is a useful quality in military service. The same is true for people with personality problems in the other scales too. Therefore by administering the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory, the test administrators are out to identify people who have outstanding control.
Perfect mental health
Military service involves the handling of weapons. This is largely true for most wings of the armed services. The last person who should be given access to a dangerous weapon such as the ones used by the military is someone whose mental health is in question. In the administration of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory, the clinical psychologists are usually out to look for young men and women who are of sound minds for military service (Nichols 2001, pp.62-64). The different scales of the test have different degrees of seriousness. For example, a schizophrenic person is not supposed to be given a chance to serve in the military. In the wake of equality debates for gays, the individuals who are confused as far as their genders are concerned may be allowed to serve in the military. Therefore, scale number five which deals with masculinity and femininity may not be such a huge hindrance to enlisting. It is, therefore, justifiable to say that in the administration of the test, the military is in search of mentally healthy individuals.
This is an indirect function of the test. It is well understood that all human beings undergo moments of depression. The difference is in how each individual gets affected by this emotion. The most intelligent people in terms of emotions will find ways of dealing with depression. The same applies to the other disorders as well such as paranoia and hysteria. Therefore if an individual can deal with these problems, then it is clear that this is someone who can be able to deal with problems that can arise during his or her time of service in the military. It is therefore definite that the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory seeks to identify people who are intelligent enough to meet the challenges of the battlefield.
The Armed Services Vocational Battery in the military
This particular test is more intellectually oriented. It has also undergone adjustments to incorporate new realities such as technological advancement. This test seeks the following in the test takers
- The numerical competency of the recruits-The math section of the test is structured in such a way that it tests the ability of the test taker to handle important numerical challenges that can arise in service.
- Comprehension and communication-The test have a portion on comprehension that tests the ability of the test taker to understand messages in written format as well as a verbal portion that tests the ability of the person to express himself or herself.
Other important aspects that this test seeks to test include the ability of the test taker to deal with electronics, understand space, infer basic concepts of general science, and assemble machines.
Armed Services Vocational Battery in the military Structure
The Armed Services Vocational Battery in the military exists in three formats. These are the computer-based, the mobile test that is administered in specific centers, and the student format that is taken in schools and colleges as a way of determining the career strength of the students. It is also important to note that each wing of the armed services has its own set of scores that one needs to meet to gain admission.
The benefits of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory and the Armed Services Vocational Battery in the military recruitment Exercise
The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory
- Through the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory, the military administration can get men and women who can stand the pressures of the battlefield. How is this possible? In the course of administering the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory, individuals who are likely to display unwanted characteristics in the near or distant future are left out. Only stable persons are given admission. Therefore the demanding nature of the military does not break these fellows down due to their strength of character (Nichols 2001, pp.57-59).
- Through the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory, the military has been able to avoid disasters that emanate from mentally unstable individuals. It is possible that if a schizophrenic individual is admitted to the military, he or she may get involved in an act that can harm his or her colleagues. But because of this test, such events have not occurred.
The Armed Services Vocational Battery in the military
- The Armed Services Vocational Battery has assisted in the selection of men and women whose aptitude is equal to the challenges of the battlefield. This is largely why the military has displayed great ability in various missions.
- The military has been able to avoid any unnecessary accidents. As identified above, the Armed Services Vocational Battery tests important elements such as measurement, electronic equipment knowledge as well as numeric ability. These are vital skills that can determine whether an army officer shoots a colleague of the enemy standing close to the colleague. If the officer is poor in measurement, he or she may end up killing the colleague. But because the Armed Services Vocational Battery has helped in selecting the people who have the best skills, these cases of unnecessary accidents are rare.
The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory is very important in military recruitment. It is used to gauge the personality of the recruits to find out whether they are fit for service or not (Groth-Marnat 2009, pp.56-57). It is divided into ten scales. Each of the ten scales measures a different aspect of mental disorder. Other variants have been created since the original test was developed in the 1930s but the major elements of the original test are still intact in all the variants. These variants include the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory -2 and Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory for adolescents. Other tests such as the Armed Services Vocational Battery play complementary roles leading to the selection of all-round people for military service. The greatest benefit of using the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory is that it leads to the selection of people with sound minds for military service. The accuracy of the personality assessment is only above reproach if the clinical psychologist administering the test is experienced and other factors such as age, religious background, social class, sex, marital status, and education level are taken into account. It is also necessary that the grey areas be properly understood so that labels are not improperly assigned to test takers.
Gotts, E & Knudsen, T., (2005).Clinical Interpretation of MMPI-2: A Content Cluster Approach.New York: Routledge.
Grayson, F.,(2002). ASVAB (Cliffs Test Prep) (illustrated ed.).New York: Cliffs Notes
Groth-Marnat, G., (2009).Handbook of Psychological Assessment, (5th ed.).New York: Wiley.
Nichols, D., (2001).Essentials of MMPI-2 Assessment (Essentials of Psychological Assessment Series) (1st ed.).New York: Wiley.