Application: Statistics and Forensic Psychology

Application: Statistics and Forensic Psychology

Application: Statistics and Forensic Psychology

The quality of any test or assessment instrument used by a forensic psychology professional is directly related to how that test was constructed and with whom it was intended for use. Statistical concepts such as validity, reliability, and norming sample population are all built into an instrument during its construction. To this effect, there are various ways of measuring validity and reliability that are applicable to different assessments. This week’s Application Assignment allows you to analyze the one of the assessment instruments, looking at several statistical concepts and seeing the importance that the concepts play in developing a good instrument that a forensic psychology professional may use.



To prepare for this assignment:

  • Review the website, “A Guide to Psychology and Its Practice: Psychological Testing,” focusing on the types of tests or instruments, the reasons for use, and the types of instrument validity and reliability that may be assessed.
  • Think about how reliability, validity, and sample populations pertain to assessment instruments used for forensic assessment and consider their importance.
  • Review the course document, “Assessment Instruments,” and select an assessment instrument that is different from the one you selected for this week’s Discussion. Search for the instrument you selected in the Mental Measurements Yearbook database. Reflect on the development and technical information about the instrument as well as any other information related to the instruments construction that relates to its reliability, validity, and norming sample populations.

The assignment (23 pages): APA ONLY!!!!!!

  • Explain each of the following as they relate to assessment instruments used in forensics: reliability, validity, and norming sample populations.
  • Analyze the importance of these aspects for an instrument used in forensic assessment, using specific examples.
  • Describe the reliability, validity, and norming sample populations for the assessment instrument you selected.

Support your Application Assignment with specific references to all resources used in its preparation. You are asked to provide a reference list only for those resources notincluded in the Learning Resources for this course.


  • Article: Otto, R. K., & Heilbrun, K. (2002). The practice of forensic psychology: A look toward the future in light of the past. American Psychologist, 57(1), 5-18. Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
  • For review: Article: Lally, S. (2003). What tests are acceptable for use in forensic evaluations? A survey of experts. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 34(5), 491-498. Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.



  • Mental Measurements YearbookNote:This week’s Discussion requires you to search for Assessment Instruments using the Mental Measurements Yearbook database, available through the Walden Library. If you have trouble locating the database, please contact the library for assistance.

Course Documents

Optional Resources

  • Article: Walters, G. (2006). Effects of test administration set on the Psychological Inventory of Criminal Thinking Styles (PICTS). International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology, 50(6), 661-671.
  • Article: Wettstein, R. (2004). Quality and quality improvement in forensic mental health evaluations. Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, 33(2), 158-175.


  • Book: Spies, R. A., Plake, B. S., Geisinger, K. F., Carlson, J. F. (Eds.). (2007). The seventeenth mental measurements yearbook. Lincoln, NE: Buros Institute of Mental Measurements.