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Practitioner reactions to work‐related psychological tests

Adrian Furnham (University College London, London, UK)
Chris J. Jackson (University of New South Wales, Kensington, Australia)

Journal of Managerial Psychology

ISSN: 0268-3946

Article publication date: 27 September 2011




This study seeks to investigate human resource practitioners' attitudes and beliefs about work related psychological tests. The purpose was to look at the structure and correlates of those beliefs.


In all, 255 practitioners from human resource and related disciplines completed a 64‐item questionnaire on their attitudes to, and beliefs about, work‐related psychological tests.


Overall, the participants were positive about the validity and hence usefulness of tests. Factor analysis suggested that attitudes to tests fell into four easily identifiable factors (Test complexity, Practical application, Bias, and Usefulness of psychological tests). It was found that all four factors were predicted by age or educational qualifications or both.

Research limitations/implications

The study had a restricted sample of test users. It would be interesting to test a bigger and more representative sample of those in HR, training and coaching and get more specific details on which tests they used, why those particular tests and how they used the data they provide.


The aim of this study is to investigate whether practitioners generally find psychological tests in general useful, what aspects of psychological tests are most valued and what aspects are least liked. It also set out to determine whether the perceived scepticism toward, or enthusiasm for, psychological tests could be predicted by test user experience, and test user academic qualifications. Whist some survey studies have been interested in expert opinion, this study looked at practitioners from HR and related disciplines.



Furnham, A. and Jackson, C.J. (2011), "Practitioner reactions to work‐related psychological tests", Journal of Managerial Psychology, Vol. 26 No. 7, pp. 549-565.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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