A different test to assess students

If your friends are making great paper planes and you want one too, what would you do? Watch a video on how to make your own; find paper and try making it; read instructions and build your own paper plane; or ask your friends on how you can get started?

This is among the many questions that high school students have to answer, but not as part of their examination. This question is part of the psychometric test that students in schools are being asked to take.

Principals and teachers said that these tests are now being made mandatory in several schools and are aimed at assessing the mental and emotional stability of students. Such tests help understand if the child is facing any trauma and give an idea of what kind of support system he or she is part of, they said.

Emotional well-being

Dakshayini Kanna, principal of Harvest International School, said the test gives an insight into the students’ emotional well-being. “We conduct the test twice an academic year and we get different results when it is conducted closer to the examination season, where some students are found depressed or have fear,” she said.

Ms. Kanna said along with psychometric test, the school managements also conduct aptitude test and interest inventory, which gives a complete profile of the child.

Ranjan Kumar, founder of Brain Checker Career Consultants, said they had designed the psychometric test for students in the Indian context. He said the 90-minute test was divided into 12 sections that check personality type, career aptitude, logical aptitude, and occupational aptitude. Once the test is administered, a 22-page report is generated for every student.

Suresh Kalyanpur, managing director of Human Resource Centre, a training and consulting services firm, said they have conducted psychometric tests for thousands of students. While acknowledging that there is a surge in the number of students on whom such tests are being administered, he said it was currently largely chosen by clients to help understand career prospects of students and give them direction.

Need for psychologist

He, however, added that the test offers an insight into the psyche of the person and was like a doctor’s tool that would sometimes require a trained psychologist to analyse results. “Sometimes, things that the student himself/herself is not aware of are revealed through the test or sometimes things that a person is hiding comes out,” Mr. Kalyanpur said. Very often, parents approach them for psychometric tests to find out why the child is disturbed and distracted. “The tests shows us various aspects of the child’s mind, including decision-making abilities and what causes stress,” he said.

Pooja Sharma, a parent, said, “As children spend a lot of time on gadgets or studying, they hardly share their emotions. This will be a useful tool even for parents to gauge the child’s emotional and mental well-being.”

Some questions asked

Which celebrity would you like to call on your annual day?

Who is your favourite sportsperson?

While you really liked the work you were doing, now you are bored. What will you do?

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