Projective and objective personality testing

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Discussion Question

Psychological tests help assess persons across a range of domains. Tests are in the form of a set of stimuli administered to a person or a group of people under standard conditions to achieve a sample of behavior for assessment. The two basic kinds of tests are objective and projective. Objective tests measure a person’s characteristics in an independent with no influence from individual’s own beliefs or rater bias. Objective tests are often contrasted with projective tests. Projective tests are based on Freudian Psychology and aim to assess the unconscious perceptions of people. A projective test is designed to allow an individual respond to ambiguous stimuli most likelyexposing internal conflicts and hidden emotionby the individual. Objective tests are based on presumption. In contrast to objective tests, responses to projective tests are content analyzed for meaning as compared to being based on deductions about meaning. Projective tests draw from psychoanalytic psychology. Psychoanalytic argues that humans have both conscious and unconscious motivations and attitudes that are hidden from or beyond conscious awareness (Funder, 2015).

Objective test necessitates individuals to respond to a structured set of questions. On the other hand, the projective test is administered in an ambiguous context so as to provide the respondents achance to impose their interpretation in responding.Objective tests tend to be more valid and reliable than projective tests.However, objective tests are subject to the willingness of the person administering to be open about their personality.  As a result, they can badly represent of the correct personality of the individual undertaking the test. Projective tests are believed to have the capacity to expose particular facets of the personality that are unattainable by means of an objective test (Funder, 2015).


Funder, D. C. (2015). The Personality Puzzle: Seventh International Student Edition. WW Norton & Company.

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