MMPI-2 Test: My Personal Opinion and Some Tips
What is the MMPI-2?
The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory 2 (MMPI-2) is a complex personality test. It consists of:
- 567 true/false questions that weigh in on different scales to determine your personality.
- Questions to ensure your answer's validity.
This test is used in many different ways, some more controversial than others, including:
- Diagnosis and treatment of mental illness.
- Criminal defense.
- Custody battles.
- Evaluating the usefulness of drug treatment programs.
- Screening candidates for government jobs, including police officers and firemen.
However, the MMPI-2 has many flaws and weaknesses that can skew the results, making the test unfair and in some cases inaccurate.
Note: This article is based on my personal opinion of the MMPI. Differing viewpoints can be read at the bottom of this article in the comments section. (Other than spam, I do not delete comments.)
The MMPI-2 Generalises
The main flaw in the MMPI 2 is that it generalises. For instance, one of the questions is:
If you could be invisible when you wanted, would you go to the movies?
I answered no, which the test counted as a lie, because apparently everybody in the world would scam a free movie if they could. These such generalisations are a flaw of the test, because a person's personality can be easily mis-measured by using yes/no tick boxes.
There are several other examples of the MMPI-2 assuming too much based on a single question, but I have decided to not include any more questions in this article for ethical and copyright reasons. You'll have to take my word for it, or do your own research.
"Studying" for the MMPI-2
If somebody really wants to pass, they can find the MMPI online. While researching the MMPI 2, I went on a mission to find the test for free online. I had little hope of being able to, since the MMPI-2 is only supposed to be administered by psychologists and other professionals. However, within an hour or two, I had managed to dig up from various sources on the internet.
This means that If I wanted to, I could have used those sources to study for the test and get a perfect result. Anybody could, if they are determined enough. It wouldn't even take that long to get the gist of what the "right" answer is to pass the MMPI-2.
That is another problem I have with the MMPI 2 test: It can "fail" perfectly good people, but still wouldn't be able to keep the major creepers and scammers out. We all know that these people exist. In fact, while on my quest to find the MMPI-2 online, I noticed several of them on various forum websites. These include people who have used online resources to manipulate the MMPI-2 into obtaining custody of a child, or becoming a police officer. Isn't that a frightening thought? That the MMPI-2 will keep out police officers honest enough to not watch movies for free if they could, but that real scaries can still get in.
How Does the MMPI-2 Work?
The MMPI-2 works by asking you multiple choice questions. Each answer gains you points on different scales, such as depression and paranoia. If you earn too many points on some scales, they may cross the normal threshold.
There are also validity scales that attempt to detect if you are not telling the truth, such as:
- The lie scale (questions like the movies question)
- The infrequency scale (for example, if different answers to the same question are worded slightly differently).
Tips If You Take the MMPI-2
- Don't lie to make yourself look better. You will most likely be caught.
- Don't overthink your answers too much. The minute you start trying to think about why they're asking every single question and what answer they want, you'll start stressing and making mistakes. Especially because some questions are really obscure (for instance, one of the very first questions is about whether or not you like mechanics magazines).
- Just be honest and hope it works out. I think that while test has its flaws and in some cases it can be wrong (which makes me dislike it), it can still yield fairly accurate results other times.