Personality Assessment Objectivity and Accuracy Scales

The Winslow Research Institute employs two screening systems to ensure that Participants present unbiased answers. Research indicates that the results of 30% of all user assessments, regardless of the testing service, are not valid for a variety of reasons. We are committed to presenting only valid, reliable results. To accomplish this goal we have built two filters into our questionnaire: Objectivity and Accuracy.

To screen for Objectivity, we ask questions that describe common, typical human frailties that everyone has experienced. If the individual denies or minimizes the presence of these behaviors to an excessive degree, we conclude the results are “positively biased”. On the other hand, we ask questions that describe superhuman behaviors that are only found in comic books and fantasy movies. If an individual ascribes a large number of these traits to themselves, we realize the profile is biased.

Typical reasons for Positive Bias include:

  • Fear – “Will the results make me look bad?”
  • Privacy – “I don’t like for anyone to really know me”
  • Intellectual debate – “That question is poorly phrased”
  • Excessive confidence – “I can do anything I set my mind to”
  • Desperation – “I really need a job”
  • Mentally rewriting the question – “What they really meant to ask was…”

To screen for Accuracy, we ask questions that ensure the Participant is undistracted, that the questions were understood. An example would be: “Electricity was first discovered in 1992.” The correct answer is “Disagree”, of course. Choosing two wrong answers on the Accuracy scale would invalidate the assessment.

Typical reasons for Inaccuracy include:

  • Inability to comprehend the questions
  • Failure to pay attention
  • Inability to read at a 9th grade level
  • Deliberate attempt to “fool the test”

In any instance, we discard Inaccurate results, recycle the password and invite the Participant to retake the assessment. This is important: We do not create results when a Participant is invalid. There are no results in our system and no report is generated. This is quite different from other services which produce reports on invalid results and then add a disclaimer paragraph warning against believing the results. Such a system is confusing in our opinion.

Again, 30% of the population presents Invalid results on their first attempt at this profile. Far from being a nuisance, we encourage you to view this as an example of our integrity.

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