Behavioral assessments help predict future behaviors. These tools offer insights into whether an employee will succeed in his new job or an offender will break more laws. Educators, parents and childcare specialists rely on various instruments to delve into behavioral or developmental issues among children. Professionals who use these mechanisms offer various tips for behavioral assessment tests, most notably to use only trained specialists in administering and interpreting results to avoid any misleading conclusions.
Human resource professionals administer pre-employment behavior assessments that measure a candidate's attitudes and motivators. Managers spare themselves a lot of headaches by watching how they phrase behavioral assessment questions, according to the Leadership Answers website. Asking a candidate how she would handle a scheduling glitch elicits a radically different response than asking how she managed a similar issue in the past. The second question asks for behavioral proof based on experiences, not hypothetical theories based on what the candidate thinks she would do.
Mental health professionals use assessments to measure a criminal's propensity toward future violence. Tips for using behavioral assessments include clarifying objectives states Mary Alice Conroy of Sam Houston State University in Texas in the online Applied Psychology In Criminal Justice. Telling a specialist to look for signs that an offender might commit spousal or sexual abuse is more effective than referencing overall violent tendencies. Also, administrators should stay within their areas of expertise because an overall psychology background does not qualify someone to evaluate juvenile or sex offenders.
Children repeat their bad behaviors when they continue to achieve their objectives. Behavioral assessments pinpoint the reasons behind those actions. For example, a kid makes noises in classes to direct attention away from a classmate. Or, he throws tantrums to escape work. A behavioral assessment looks at patterns occurring before and after the inappropriate behavior. This process requires patience and collaboration between professionals and parents so the child can be coached into achieving the same outcomes by using acceptable behaviors, according to Teach-Nology website.
Diagnosing developmental delays in children requires detailed behavioral assessments, not quick screenings, according to the Autism Speaks website. Assessments involve direct observations by an experienced clinician and a lengthy questionnaire that is completed by the parents. One helpful technique requires both parents to flip through the child's baby book to refresh their memories of past behavioral themes they may have noticed years earlier but forgotten. The more the parents can recall, the more accurate history they will offer to clinicians who oversee the diagnosis.
- "Leadership Answers"; Strategic Screening And Hiring: Six Steps To Finding The Best Applicants For Your Organization; Dan Bobinski; 2006
- "Applied Psychology In Criminal Justice (APCJ)"; Risk Assessments In The Texas Criminal Justice System; Mary Alice Conroy; 2006
- "Teach-Nology"; Conducting A Functional Behavioral Assessment: What's All the Hype?; Joan M. Miller
- "Autism Speaks"; Frequently Asked Questions About Autism Spectrum Diagnoses; Catherine Lord; April 2007
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images