ANSI - American National Standards Institute
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ANSI Seeks Comments to Develop U.S. Position on Proposed Psychological Assessment Standard

New York, Mar 03, 2006

DIN (Deutsches Institut fur Normung), the official German member of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), has submitted a proposal for a new ISO standard on the subject of psychological assessment services. The purpose of the standard is to improve the procedures used in psychological evaluation and the quality with which they are carried out.

Guiding the entire process of psychological assessment, the proposed work item would help define the planning and implementation of appropriate assessment procedures as well as the interpretation and communication of results. The standard is intended to serve practitioners and the individuals receiving care, aiming to protect clients from misuse of assessment procedures, minimize wrong decisions, and encourage best practices in psychological assessment services. In the proposal, DIN asserts that the standard would contribute to the continual improvement and widespread implementation of scientifically and professionally sound assessment procedures. The standard will not apply to medical diagnostics.

The scope of the proposed work item addresses requirements for psychological assessment services with reference to:

  • assessment planning
  • selection, implementation, and evaluation of procedures
  • interpretation of the results and judgment formation
  • qualification requirements for individuals taking an active part in the assessment process

The standard would define a step-by-step procedure requiring: initial analysis of any case or class of cases; a stated rationale for proposed assessment procedures; the interpretation of data to be based on theoretical and practical considerations underlying the procedures in use; documentation of all decisions; and continual reevaluation of the assessment procedure in order to account for new developments in psychology. DIN has proposed using existing national standards, such as DIN 33430 Requirements for Proficiency Assessment Procedures and their Implementation, as key documents in developing the work item. The proposed target date for publication of the standard is December 2009.

In February, the ISO Technical Management Board approved circulation of the DIN proposal to all member bodies for voting. As the official U.S. member of the ISO, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is seeking comments on the DIN proposal from U.S. representatives of the psychological services sector. The input will be used to formulate the U.S. position on the proposal which will be presented to the ANSI ISO Council in preparation for the council’s recommendation to ISO.

Interested stakeholders are invited to submit comments to Steven Cornish, ANSI director of international policy (, by Friday, April 14, 2006.

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