While most education systems are full of academic tests that measure a child’s prowess in particular subjects, psychometric tests have been gaining popularity and are being offered to high school students. These tests are designed to measure individual differences such as abilities, attitudes, personality traits and educational achievements, according to Personality: The Psychometric View by Paul Kline.
Even though they enjoy wide usage and acceptance in psychology and are used in schools, military recruitment, mental health clinics and corporates, and are considered valid and reliable, they cannot be used in isolation. Since the scores can be open to subjective interpretation, and testing parameters, such as culture, environment and the like, cannot be replicated, these tests may not always be accurate.
‘Psych’ means mind and ‘metric’ means measurement. In simple words, psychometric means measuring one’s mind. As a child grows up, they face a lot of challenges in their daily life, one of which is choosing their future career. With so many options available it becomes difficult for a student to pick one at such a young age.
Very often students are advised by their parents to choose a particular career path just because they scored well in a subject related to the career. There are even cases where students cannot make career decisions freely and choose a specific career path in fear of judgement from their peers.
Counselling can help students understand their true potential and overcome such biases. Apart from interest and Intelligence Quotient in a particular field, another equally important factor is the Emotional Quotient. It tells a lot about a person’s stress managing, intrapersonal and interpersonal skills. An insight into those factors helps in determining what work environment is best suited for the student. This is where psychometric tests come in. These tests focus on a student’s mental, emotional and psychological ability and analyse accordingly. Later the answers can be discussed with a career counsellor who will guide to selecting the best course for the student.
After the tests, the students can also get an insight into their interests, likes, strengths, personality and so on. This will help them make an informed decision. Making informed decisions help students become more confident and build a strong foundation for their future career. Psychometric tests help students understand their field of study and make them acquainted with their chosen career paths. These tests are important to know more about the learning capability of students and it aims at revealing their cognitive capability.
This series of physical and mental queries are helpful for an individual to understand their needs before making any educational decisions. This helps students become more confident about their capabilities and strengths. Instead of focusing on the market demand of a subject, the psychometric tests help students understand their suitability and choose a skilled market accordingly.
Best time to conduct psychometric tests for students:
1. During the time of transition from 10th grade.
2. If the interests of students have changed over the years and they are confused while dealing with so many options.
3. While the students are in 12th grade and need help to choose a specialization subject.
Although it is not necessary to conduct a psychometric test for a student, it is a very important tool to make young students aware of their decisions. If conducted in the right way it can help students choose the career paths that are the best fit for them.
This holistic approach is what schools should be investing in, as it will help students make better decisions about their future. After all, the human touch trumps a test every single time.