Psychological Self-Help

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California Personality Inventory is another easily used test that
measures several traits. Attitude tests are mentioned in chapter 14
and are usually easily understood. The brief summaries of personality
tests scattered throughout this book are not long enough to be
reliable. If any of the results concern you, however, you should see a
psychologist who can give you a more thorough examination. 
Online Testing 
In the last couple of years, several psychological testing sites have
appeared on the Web. Automated or computerized testing has been
developing since the 1960’s, so adapting it to the Web is pretty easy.
A good review of the characteristics, advantages, limitations, and risks
of online testing is or will soon be available (Barak & English, 2000). In
general, most of the Web sites offer free, brief, non-professional “pop”
or screening tests of unknown validity; they usually give you
immediate feedback. As with most free things online, the testing is
also a come-on to some profit-making product or service—books, e-
therapy, more individualized testing for a fee, etc. Although not a basis
for seriously diagnosing individual problems, many of the brief tests
are interesting and may create useful curiosity and motivation to learn
more. Here are some of the Web sites. 
The American Psychological Association simply provides links to
every month, there are currently 16 general testing resources sites
listed, plus 18 sites that offer online tests and interpretations (most of
these tests are intended to provide information to consumers but some
of the sites provide an automated testing service for psychologists who
refer their patients to the site). Another large site also searches the
short personality or relationship tests. While search engines will also
find similar sites offering psychological tests, these two sites will
provide better, cleaner leads (fewer ads) and some initial evaluation. 
One of the more impressive testing sites, thus far, is the popular ( . Within an almost
overwhelming clutter of ads, several free tests are offered, each
followed by a brief, simple interpretation of your answers and then a
list of related self-help books for sale. Consumers are told that the
tests cannot replace professional diagnosis and care, but links are
given to Web sites where counseling is available. Thus, the site visitor
starts with a self-assessment and then is given the options of
purchasing books or counselors. There are 10 to 20-minute tests for:
anxiety, depression, self-esteem, introversion, burnout, pessimism-
optimism, and several coping/social/communication skills, such as
assertiveness, leadership, sales ability, emotional IQ, attachment, and
others. They appear to be slightly better but similar to the “pop”
quizzes you find in the Sunday Supplement. Still, these tests may “get
you thinking.” 
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