Psychometry Services

Tom Erickson, MA, CSP, NCC, LMHC

Psychometry

What is Psychometry?

Psychometry literally means measuring the psyche.  In this context, psychometrists are the technologists who administer and score the measures used in assessing the brain-behavior relationship - but do not typically interpret the data. 

In other words, we try to answer the question, "What is the patient's level of brain functioning?" - what are their strengths and weaknesses and how does that tie in with their medical and psychosocial history to determine brain functioning.  We work in concert with licensed psychologists/neuropsychologists.

The role of the psychometrist is similar in the way a radiology technician works in concert with a radiologist, or EEG technologists with neurologists; etc.

What is a Psychometrist?

A Psychometrist is a professional who administers and scores psychological and neuropsychological measures under the supervision of a licensed psychologist or neuropsychologist.  Psychometrists do not interpret psychological &/or neuropsychological measures unless licensed to do so.  Training emphasizes extensive comprehension of test administration as well as efficient scoring with providing detailed behavioral observations.

Neuropsychological Evaluations:

A thorough neuropsychological evaluation often assesses a variety of domains including (but not limited to):

A full neuropsychological evaluation often requires 6-8 hours to administer and score depending on the population, referral question, and testing efficiency of the patient. 

Populations often assessed include (those with):

There is no age limit but it is important that the Psychometrist be trained for specific populations. 

Why use the services of a Psychometrist?

Some may think that a psychologist can simply administer the measures.  And on the surface that may seem true though not recommended.  First, studies have shown that a psychologist using the services of a psychometrist increases business revenue.  However, the more important reason is that the standardized measures were developed with the use of a psychometrist, not a psychologist.  By not using a psychometrist the validity of the measure administered/scored is questionable at best

Psychometrist, Psychometrician, Psychological Technician - What's in a Name?

For many decades psychometrists have worked in collaboration with psychologists administering and scoring psychological and neuropsychological measures.  Some have referred to us as "technicians," "psychological technicians," "psychological associates," "psychometricians," etc.  All of these terms are inaccurate

Technicians work with machinery, while technologists work with people.  Psychometricians are professionals involved in the design and analysis of testing programs and with theoretical issues having to do with testing models.  Psychometrists are not psychometricians, and psychometricians are not psychometrists. 

The scope of practice of psychometrists focuses on the administration and scoring of psychological and neuropsychological measures in human subjects. The most consistent and accurate term for our profession is psychometrist.  It is the preferred term we use and the one to be used by others.  However, a Neuropsychometrist or Neuropsychometric Technologist is also correct.

Source: Derived/adapted from National Association of Psychometrists
- Tom Erickson, MA, CSP, NCC, LMHC -
BCP President (2007-2010)

Unraveling the layers of brain functioning