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Preview: ATP Industrial-Organizational Division

ATP Industrial-Organizational Division

Established in 1992, Association of Test Publishers (ATP) is a non-profit organization representing providers of tests and assessment tools and services related to education, employment, certification/licensing and clinical uses. Copyright 2008. All right

Updated: 2014-10-06T20:09:58.114-04:00


Firefighters win the Ricci v. DeStefano case


The Supreme Court ruling could alter employment practices nationwide and make it harder to prove discrimination when there is no evidence it was intentional.

Click here for a news report on the ruling.

Research Update


This update summarizes and provides links for the following research of interest:Using Integrity Tests for Employee SelectionDoes Emotional Reasoning aid Job Performance?What attracts Employees to Organizations?Using Integrity Tests for Employee SelectionIntegrity tests, as a part of a selection battery, have been shown to provide the greatest incremental validity over and above tests of general mental ability (Schmidt and Hunter, 1998). Building on this research, Casillas, Robbins, McKinniss, Postlewaite and Oh (2009) tested 680 job incumbents across nine organizations of different sizes spanning diverse industries to develop and validate an integrity measure called the WorkKeys Performance Assessment (WPA). This participant sample was randomly split into a development sample, which was used to select the items to be included on the test and a cross- validation sample, to identify the properties of the measure. An item pool was generated using current I/O Psychology literature, subject matter expert ratings, and readability ratings from a sample of 50 blue-collar employees. The resulting pool of 216 items was set to a 6-point Likert scale and divided into two sub-scales, GWA measuring an individual’s overall approach to their work and environment and RR, a measure of an individual’s attitude towards compliance with safety guidelines and procedures as well as accident prevention in the workplace. The measure contained both overt and covert items. Analysis of data collected from the development sample resulted in a total of 26 GWA (α=.81) and 23 RR (α=.83) items. Scores on the GWA and RR scales were correlated with both self and supervisor ratings of performance. Moreover, including RR in the analysis increased incremental validity and ability to predict safety and counter-productive work behaviours by 27.8% and 20.1% respectively. It was also observed that a composite of conscientiousness, agreeableness and emotional stability from the Big 5 was highly correlated with the WPA (range=.52-.59). Consistent with the literature, fairly low correlations were observed between demographic variables and test scores. Hence, these pre-employment tests could function as a cost-effective device to identify potentially reliable and dependable employees who may be successful on the job.Full article/abstract available at: Emotional Reasoning aid Job Performance?This 2-study investigation by Blickle, Momm, Kramer, Mierke, Liu and Ferris (2009) evaluated the construct and criterion related validity of a new measure of emotional reasoning called the ‘Test of Emotional Intelligence (TEMINT). This test uses a specific-ability approach to assess an important component of emotional intelligence which involves reasoning with emotions or “the ability to employ emotional knowledge to understand and analyze emotions” (Blickle et al., 2009). The measure was developed such that lower scores on the TEMINT indicate higher emotional reasoning skills. This measure was administered to 210 German employees in conjunction with another extensively validated measure of emotion perception ability called ‘DANVA’. These participants were also peer-rated by 210 assessors. Consistent with expectations, the TEMINT was significantly related to job function and job type but not age and gender. Results from Study 1 indicated that TEMINT scores were positively correlated with scores from the DANVA (r=.26, p[...]

Research Update


This update summarizes and provides links for the following research of interest:Can Faking be Reduced by Using Multiple Predictors?Job Engagement and the “Disconnect” Between Scientist & PractitionerEvidence for a New Factor of Cognitive AbilityShould you Hire or Nurture Optimism?Can Faking be Reduced by Using Multiple Predictors? Converse, Peterson and Griffith (2009) compared faking on non-cognitive selection measures used in isolation with those administered in conjunction with other selection measures. Simulated selection data including 2000 data points was generated and selected in different combinations of variable scores, on conscientiousness and two other predictors as well as on faking and job performance. The outcomes of criterion-related validity, mean performance and selection decision consistency were then examined. Results indicated that faking did affect the criterion-related validity to a considerable extent and hence remains a practical concern for selection research and practice. In addition, the authors observed that faking affected all other outcomes to a lesser degree when multiple selection measures (either cognitive or non-cognitive) are used together as opposed to when the personality measure was administered in isolation. Based on the findings of their research, the authors suggest that it is advisable to use caution and attempt to reduce faking by adding additional predictors if a narrow trait is being used to predict a specific attribute of performance. Future research in the areas of faking and multiple predictors as well as the faking-performance correlation is also warranted based on its considerable practical relevance.Full article at: Engagement and the “Disconnect” Between Scientist & Practitioner Wefald and Downey (2009) discuss the obvious discrepancy between organizations and academia in their approach to job engagement. Job engagement is a popular concept with organizations and HR consulting firms. There exist a number of measures, such as the Gallup Q12 approach, which defines job engagement as ‘an individual’s involvement, satisfaction and enthusiasm for work and being connected to others at work’ (Harter, Schmidt and Hayes, 2002). Limited external academic validation of popular engagement measures has been carried out due to their proprietary nature. It is apparent, however, that the industry focus remains on outcomes such as retention and performance. On the other hand, academia considers engagement from a psychological state standpoint, defined as ‘a persistent and affective-motivational state of fulfillment in employees’ (Schaufeli, 2002). There is limited research on the consequences of job engagement as defined by academia and the generalizability of existing research in the area is questionable. Future research comparing or relating the academic concept with the industry approach would go a long way in bridging the gap between these spheres.Full article at: for a New Factor of Cognitive Ability The single factor ‘g’ (Spearman, 1927) has long been associated with cognitive ability and intelligence. However, recent evidence suggests the existence of another additional factor termed ‘process analytic’ by Zysberg (2009). The first study conducted by Zysberg (2009) included 6010 applicants for professional positions that ranged between 18-56 years of age. The participants underwent a battery of classic intelligence tests including a formal series test, a numeric sequence test, an arithmetic knowledge test, a verbal analogies test and a verbal logical test. They also completed two process analytic tests including flowcharts and process tests which showed high reliability coefficients. Factor analysis indicated the presence of three factors accounting for 93% of the total variance underlying the intelligence construct including a quantitative reasoning facto[...]

Information on Ricci, et al. v. DeStefano, et al. case


Interested in accessing Briefs and Documents related to the Ricci, et al. v. DeStefano, et al case? You can find them here.

NAS workshops to improve O*NET


NAS is hosting two workshops in March 2009 to review uses and possible improvements to O*NET. is where you can find an overview of the project, committee membership, and information on the open meeting dates which are 3.26.09 and 4.17.09 in Washington, DC

Be sure to attend the ATP meeting at SIOP on Friday, April 3rd from 5:00pm to 6:00pm


The I/O Division of ATP will be holding its annual reception at SIOP on Friday, April 3rd from 5:00pm – 6:00pm in the Crescent Board Room (4th Floor of the Sheraton). Please join us for an update and refreshments. We look forward to seeing you there.

ATP Presentation on the Management of Assessment Data


Access the PowerPoint Presentation

Access a Word document listing ethical codes and guidelines relevant to the management of assessment data

Interesting posts from popular HR blogs


Summarizes posts from a variety HR blogs. The diverse set of topics include everything from discrimination when using videos for interviews/resumes, to the benefits and drawback to twitter chatter on the job, to best practices in succession planning.Discrimination and the use of video (interviews, resumes)Examines whether the newest technology tool of video will help or hurt our collective quest to treat every job applicant equally. Positives of Gen YI’m young. I’m inexperienced. I’m a slacker. I’m entitled. I have a short attention span. I can’t hold down a job. At least that’s how my elders see me. Seekers Vend their Skills on E-BayA Colorado woman who was terminated from her job at a call center decides to sell her skills on EBay launches Industry has released a unique view of job postings and job seeker trends in 12 major industries called Industry Trends. 100 Companies Hiring this QuarterYahoo! HotJobs has refreshed their quarterly list of the top 100 companies that are hiring this quarter. The list is based on the quantity of job postings each company has published on the job site. in the Game – An engaging interactive experience + RJP + employment test in one packageExplores how video game technology (VGT) is influencing employment testing and the potential benefits of this union and Experience Questionnaires – Mitigating their risksOffers pointers on mitigating the challenges associated with T&E Questionnaires Automate Succession Planning When you do it like the Mob?A call for a more thoughtful, proactive approach to succession planning Planning – Preparedness for the FutureContains a link to a concise article that includes some fundamental best practices Ledbetter LawBLR founder and CEO Bob Brady reports on responses to his recent survey on the impact of the new Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. Majority view? “I’m OK-- you’re a mess.” ChatterPerspectives on the benefits and distractions that come with tweeting on the job, along with useful Twitter tools for teams and businesses. and the Future of Human ResourcesAbout the leading edge iCims talent platform and its participation in the 2nd Annual Future of Human Resources in Oil, Gas, & Energy Conference. Surveillance in the Workplace - when is it a good idea?Includes a top 10 “things to consider” list and Q&A section from the British Columbia Privacy Commissioner for employers contemplating video surveillance at work People Making Bad DecisionsFind out what 4 things can derail even the most intelligent leaders and view a podcast by Sydney Finkelstein, the author of Why Smart Executives Fail.[...]

Research Update


I hope you're ready, because this is a big one! It has been a while since we summarized recent stduies of relevance to test publishers. In this post, we clear the backlog by summarizing articles (from various journals) on the following topics:Validity of police-selection measures and differences between ethnic groupsReducing faking on situational judgment testsConsequences of frequent applicants in adverse impact analysesThe influence of organizational culture on work-related personality requirement ratings: A multilevel analysisThe relationship between financial history and counterproductive work behaviorMeasuring compensation satisfactionDoes age of transformational leaders matter?Applicant–employee similarity and attraction to an employerDo you think KSAOs can be improved?Can coaching improve performance on structured interviews?Work values: Some demographic and cultural correlatesHow organizational climate affects discrimination claimsCriterion-related validity of Dutch police-selection measures and differences between ethnic groupsMeijer, Born, Terlouw, & van der Molen (2008) compared the validity of cognitive ability and non-cognitive ability measures (e.g., Big-5 personality, assessment center, structured interview) in predicting police training performance. Validities differed depending on Ethnic group. Participants were 2365 majority applicants and 682 minority applicants (minority applicants were primarily Antillean, Moroccan, Surinamese, or Turkish) training to become Dutch police officers. The authors cite recent evidence that general mental ability may be less predictive in police officer jobs than in most other occupations (r = .24; Salgado et al., 2003). In accordance with – though more extreme than – that evidence, the authors concluded that generally mental ability had low validity in predicting training performance for police officers, especially for the ethnic majority group (r = .14 for ethnic minority group; r = .04 for ethnic majority group). No big 5 personality dimension predicted performance for either ethnic group. Assessment centers and employment interviews were more predictive for the ethnic majority group. The authors discuss the potential impact of (1) bias in ratings by raters who were all members of the majority-group, (2) small variance in the training performance criterion, (3) degree to which training performance is likely to agree with subsequent on-the-job performance.Full link to article: the consequences of frequent applicants in adverse impact analyses: A demonstration studyAutomated application processes make applying to jobs easier, allowing candidates to apply to multiple positions within an organization or the same position multiple times. These repeat candidates can influence adverse impact analyses. Dunleavy et al. (2008) demonstrate the effects using simulations. The authors show how a single applicant applying multiple times can cause the appearance of adverse impact when none exists. Conversely, in cases where there is adverse impact, repeat applicants can hide the adverse impact. These effects are demonstrated in various selection scenarios using simulations. The authors then discuss methods of identifying repeat applicants and present options for handling data from them.Full link to article: influence of organizational culture on work-related personality requirement ratings: A multilevel analysisIf organizational culture affects selection, the same job in different organizations should have slightly different requirements. Li et al. (2008) found just that: personality importance ratings differed between organizations. These importance ratings were related to organizational culture. Participants were 270 Chinese c[...]

IPAC (Formerly IPMAAC) Call for Papers


There are a couple of updates on the organization formerly known as IPMAAC. Due to a change in its relationship with IPMA-HR, IPMAAC has changed its name its name to IPAC--the International Personnel Assessment Council. IPAC has also posted a call for proposals for its 33rd Annual Conference to be held September 12-16, 2009 in Nashville, TN (proposal due date: January 30, 2009).

Supreme Court to Hear Ricci v. DeStefano


In what has been described as a reverse discrimination case, the Supreme Court has has agreed to hear what may be a potential landmark case that looks at the role of race in public sector hiring. The case involves firefighters in New Haven, CT who took a promotional exams. While 17 white and 1 Latino firefighter passed the exam, none of the African American candidates did. As a result, the city threw out the results because of adverse impact.

The firefighters subsequently filed suit. One of the core issues to be decided is whether test results can be disregarded solely on the basis of the race of the top scorers without violating the Equal Protection Clause and the prohibition against the use of race-based cut scores. (New Haven has apparently conceded that the exam itself was well-constructed and its validity is not in question.) Tom Sharf's article in the January 2009 SIOP TIP provides a good overview and interesting analysis of the case.

Here is the case before the Supreme Court and one of the earlier rulings.

Cheating on Pre-Employment Assessments


While cheating is a concern to all in the testing industry, it is most often seen as a concern to those working in certification and education. However, a recent Wall Street Journal article describes how the current economic climate may be fostering an increase in cheating on pre-employment selection tests.

ATP Conference Program and Registration


The program for the upcoming ATP Conference is posted on the conference website. Registration continues and be sure to make your room reservations prior to January 26, 2009 to obtain the negotiated room rate.

I-O Division Leadership for 2009


January marks the annual change in leadership within the ATP Divisions. As a result, Ryan Ross becomes Chair for 2009. He will be ably assisted by John Weiner (Vice Chair) and Julie Carswell (Secretary).

This also marks the end of my term as a I-O Division chair. I would like to take this opportunity to express my appreciation for having had the opportunity to serve the division as well as ATP as whole. I am also grateful to those who shared their valuable time and efforts in supporting the goals of ATP.

Reid Klion

ATP Intellectual Property Theft Collaborative Working Group


A number of working groups were formed as part of the 2008 ATP Test Security Summit. The IP Theft Collaborative Working Group has recently published its work product. If you don't have a password to access the wiki, there is information on the page on how to obtain one. Also, information on the 2009 Security Summit can be found on the ATP Conference website.

Journal of Applied Testing Technology


The Association of Test Publishers publishes a peer-reviewed online journal, Journal of Applied Testing Technology edited by Chad W. Buckendahl and William G. Harris. The most recent article is a piece by Nathan Thompson, entitled "A Proposed Framework for Test Administration Methods." The article compares and contrasts a number of test administration methodologies including CBT, CAT, CCT, and LOFT.

I-O Division Elections


Congratulations to Julie Carswell who has been elected Secretary of the I-O Division for 2009! She will join the 2009 I-O Division leadership team of Ryan Ross (Chair) and John Weiner (Vice Chair). Julie's contributions to the blog over the past year are much appreciated, and her continued involvement with be a boon to the Division and ATP.

Interesting Article on APA's Position on Torture


In September 2008, the American Psychological Association banned its members from participating in interrogations that use torture. (This contrasts with other organizations like American Medical Association and the American Psychiatric Association which have had such bans in place since 2006.) In an interesting article, Stanley Fish outlines some of the factors that he believes account for this differential response. One factor that he sees as being primary is the fact that in contrast to organizations that are comprised exclusively of health care providers, psychologists may work in roles that extend beyond the concept of "healer."

Some "Must Read" Articles


The September 2008 edition of Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Perspectives on Science and Practice (table of contents) has two series of articles that are likely of great relevance to anyone interested in personnel selection. The first set of articles focuses what the authors see as some of the key questions facing personality researchers working on practice-related issues. The second looks at some of the factors which contribute to the resistance of hiring mangers to use empirically supported selection methods in favor of other methods, primarily unstructured interviews, which tend to have very limited predictive validity.

ATP Conference Registration Now Open


Registration for 2009 ATP Conference is now open. Innovations in Testing 2009 will be held February 22-25 2009 in Palm Springs, CA. See the Conference website for full information.

Call for Papers: 11th European Congress of Psychology


The European Congress of Psychology (ECP2009) to be held in Oslo 7-10 July 2009 will have a special track on developments in testing and test use. Chaired by Dave Bartram, this track will be organized in close cooperation with the ITC and with the EFPA Standing Committee on Tests and Testing. The track will consist of keynote addresses, state of the art lectures, symposia and a number of parallel paper and poster sessions which will run throughout the Congress. If interested, please send an e-mail here.

Group differences in personality – Meta-analyses comparing five U.S. racial groups


Foldes, Duehr, and Ones conducted a large-scale meta-analysis to examine the magnitude of racial group differences on measures of personality and whether these differences are likely to result in adverse impact.
Due to the paucity of analyses and research in this area, this study provides an important contribution to the literature. The current research extends beyond existing research in many ways. First, researchers included understudied racial groups such as Asian Americans and American Indians and used a reliable estimate of the magnitude of racial group differences (d-values). The authors also examined differences at both the broad factor and narrow facet levels. Data from 44 different personality assessments was used and more than 700 effect sizes contributed to the database. Results suggested that in general, racial group differences were negligible and unlikely to result in adverse impact. However, there is some concern for adverse impact for certain groups and traits but this is dependent on characteristics of the selection scenario such as the trait being measured, the effect size, the composition of the applicant pool, and the selection ratio. The authors present a summary of potential trait-group combinations that may result in adverse impact. Specifically, adverse impact could be a concern for Blacks when Emotional Stability, Anxiety, Extraversion and Sociability are measured. There is some concern for Asians when Emotional Stability, Even Tempered, Extraversion, Dominance, Sociability, and Conscientiousness are measured, and for Hispanics when Sociability is measured. For American Indians, there is some concern when Emotional Stability and Extraversion are measured and for Whites there is some concern for Conscientiousness and its facets (Achievement, Cautiousness, Order), Extraversion, and Self-Esteem. This research has implications for the use of personality assessments for selection, such that practitioners should carefully consider the job-related traits being measured, the composition of their applicant pools, and their selection ratios.

View full abstract/get the article at:

Submission Deadline for EAWOP Conference Approaches


October 3, 2008 is the proposal submission deadline for the 14th European Congress of Work and Organizational Psychology to be held in Santiago de Compostela, Spain on May 13-16, 2009. Organized under the auspices of the European Association of Work and Organizational Psychology (EAWOP), the conference has the theme "Developing People in 21st Century Organizations: Global and Local Perspectives."

Article on Emotional Intelligence


The lead article (abstract) of the September 2008 edition of the American Psychologist is a paper by John Mayer, Peter Salovey, and David Caruso reviewing the concept and subsequent controversy and confusion that have emerged in regard to the construct of emotional intelligence. The first to propose the idea of emotional intelligence, the authors explore some of the complexities which have emerged in relation to this concept since their original work in 1990 and make suggestions for future work in the area.