In the field of psychology, psychological reports are one of the most important tools that a psychologist should know how to use to practice his profession with solvency, because in many cases the psychological report will be the one that sets the guidelines for to follow. both by the psychologist and by his consultants.
A psychological report is an instrument used in psychology to present a series of results obtained through a psychological assessment to a person in different contexts (clinical, human resources, educational, expert and road safety). In each of them, all the information that the psychologist has gathered during the assessment process must be gathered.
This article will briefly explain the main types of psychological reports what is and why they are used.
What are the main types of psychological reports?
There are several types of psychological report, broken down into several causes: according to the mode of transmission (oral or written report); according to the object and purpose of the evaluation (evaluation report, selection or orientation or intervention); finally, according to the context of its application (selection, clinical, educational, expert or traffic and safety report).
Each of the different types of psychological reporting should follow a number of basic principles. Let’s see what they are.
The first principle to follow during a psychological report is that things should be explained in the shortest possible way, without funnels, so that those who read or listen to this report can understand it without difficulty.
The second principle to follow is don’t use too many technical terms In order to appear more professional or even scientific, it is best to use plain language to allow the target audience to better understand the report.
The third principle is that the speech used in the report should be appropriate for the person (s) to whom it is addressed, so that they can understand.
In conclusion, all different types of psychological reports should follow the guidelines for clarity, conciseness, and appropriate exposition.
Type of psychological report according to the mode of transmission
We will explain below the different types of psychological report classified according to their mode of transmission, with two main means: oral and written.
1. Oral or verbal report
This is one of the types of psychological reports you use a return interview, in which the information obtained about him is returned in a structured way to the person assessed.
The oral or verbal report has three objectives in order to apply it correctly:
- Provide the subject being evaluated with a professional explanation of the causes for which he was evaluated.
- Help the subject to understand his problem and teach him to manage or control it.
- Clinically, this ratio is also used to negotiate what psychological treatment will look like.
2. Written report
Usually the written report is used in addition to the oral report to facilitate clarification and provide the nuances deemed necessary compared to the oral report. Therefore, the principles to be followed in the oral report should also be taken into account when drafting a written report.
One thing to keep in mind is that when using psychological terms in a report, they should be detailed so that the patient understands the psychologist, as often patients overuse psychological terms. In this way, misunderstandings between the psychotherapist and the patient can be avoided.
It is very important that written reports are signed and initialed by the psychologist who performed it.
Type of psychological report according to the purpose of the assessment
Depending on the purpose and purpose of the assessment, there are 3 different types of psychological reports which we will briefly explain below.
1. Psychological assessment report
This psychological report is used for the purpose of making a subsequent diagnosis, this report must therefore include a clear and precise explanation of the diagnosis so that the patient to whom it is addressed can understand it without difficulty, as well as a series of recommendations for the corresponding psychological treatment that should be received in order to obtain a improvement or currency.
2. Selection or orientation report
The main purpose of this type of psychological report is suggest to the subject assessed one or more trades for which he could be more suitable according to the skills he has demonstrated and taking into account their personal preferences and interests in this regard.
Another purpose of this type of report would be to provide the subject being evaluated with the final conclusion along with the explanation of why he or she was accepted or not accepted to do a certain job they aspire to, that is why they were evaluated. .
These staff selection or orientation reports, commonly used in the field of Human Resources, they are also often referred to as psychological assessment reports, as explained above for diagnosis in the field of clinical psychology.
3. Intervention report
This type of report is made when the psychologist has received a request to perform a psychological assessment in order to perform an intervention with the patient to help you make changes after receiving therapy. In this case, a final report must be drawn up informing the patient of the results obtained during the therapy sessions.
Type of psychological report according to the context of your professional application
Depending on the context in which it is applied, there can be 5 types of psychological assessment, as we will apply it below.
1. Clinical report
Clinical reports are the most used in psychology, as a high percentage of psychology graduates opt for the two variants that exist in Spain to be able to provide psychological therapy to patients: obtaining a place through the PIR examination (resident internal psychologist) to work in the hospital or by obtaining a Masters in General Health Psychology (MPGS), which is taught in public and private universities, the aim of which is to enable psychologists to be able to give psychological therapy in the private sphere (for example, psychology practices).
This is why the clinical report it has the largest number of studies, research, articles and book chapters which explains how to apply it so that it is effective and that the objectives which are intended to be achieved with its application are achieved, with various methods for its application.
The following is an example of a clinical report, and it is the clinical report proposed by the Center of Applied Psychology of the Autonomous University of Madrid, which has the following sections:
- Personal data of the patient or consultant.
- Membership number and name of psychologist.
- Details of the center or institution where it is carried out.
- Start and end date of the assessment.
- Brief description of patient demand.
- Assessment tools and areas assessed.
- Results obtained and conclusions.
- Diagnosis according to DSM-5 can be added to the conclusions section, if necessary.
- Objectives of the treatment, previously condensed with the patient.
- The proposal for psychological intervention.
- Informed consent, having been clarified to the patient.
- Date of issue, accompanied by the signature of both (psychologist and patient).
There are several models of psychological report; however, none are more valid than others, so it is important that, whatever you choose, keep in mind that this this should help the psychologist organize all the information the necessary information about the patient and the situation that led you to the consultation so that we can provide you with the treatment most appropriate if this is the particular case.
2. Selection report
This guy reports are often used by psychologists working for a company to assess job seekers who are offered. It is also common for such reports to be written by army military psychologists for aspiring future soldiers. These reports serve as a pre-screening to select a number of applicants in the final phase of the selection process where they will have to perform further tests (eg medical examination).
In these types of psychological report a number of principles must be taken into account:
- Respect the privacy of the candidate being assessed.
- Evaluate the aptitudes and characteristics of aspirants within the legal margins.
- The information contained in the report must be kept in a safe place under the responsibility of the psychologist and the company.
- It is forbidden to apply any test that undermines the integrity of the candidates.
- Take into account the brevity, simplicity and clear ideas of candidates for a position.
3. Expert report
This type of report can be used by psychologists in various fields (criminal law, civil law, labor law, military law and canon law).
When writing an expert report, the psychologist must take into account who it is for, as this is a very important factor when writing it. depending on the quality, quality and quantity of the information collected there (For example, a prosecutor or judge will demand as much information as possible, while a lawyer will only require the information they need based on their role in the trial, the prosecution).
Below we will explain the different sections that should be included in a sample psychological expert report:
- Identification of the psychologist.
- Court data.
- The confidentiality of the report must be indicated.
- Affiliation of the informant.
- Details of who requested the report and the reasons for the request.
- Facts that have been reported.
- Documentation of the summary that you consulted when writing the report.
- Questions put to the expert.
- Interviews carried out.
- Brief history of the subject being assessed.
- Current psychopathological examination of the assessed subject.
- Exploration using psychometric tests.
- Results and corresponding commentary.
- Conclusions and interferences of interest.
In the expert reports, it should be noted that the conclusions drawn have very relevant and serious repercussions, this type of report is therefore a great responsibility for the psychologists who carry it out, because the information which is developed there can be essential in a criminal trial.
4. Traffic and safety report
This kind of relationship is what psychologists do work in medical examination centers for drivers who aspire to have a driver’s license or who are going to renew it.
In the case of driver’s licenses, the following requirements should be considered in order to grant the driver’s license to the person being assessed, and this is a series of psychophysical skills that the psychologist should assess through testing appropriate, and these skills are:
- Visiomotor coordination.
- Estimation of movement.
- Practical intelligence.
- Multiple reaction times.
In these centers, they are also carried out for people who come to obtain or renew the license for the possession and use of firearms, the possession of potentially dangerous animals or the possession of the title of pleasure craft.
5. Educational report
These reports are used as part of the psychoeducational assessment in order to be able to identify the educational needs of the students of the center in which it is realized that they have some kind of developmental difficulty or that they may have difficulty in the school curriculum or for some other reason.
Therefore, the aim of this report is to provide the student with a series of recommendations to be able to progress in the development of his capacities or to guide the student in a series of decisions around the options which will be presented to him in the future. to pursue its capabilities. studies.
- APIR (2019). Manual of psychological assessment. Madrid: APIR.
- Calvo, CM and Rodriguez, JM (2019). The psychological report. In C. Moreno and IM Ramírez (Coords.) Psychological assessment: processes, techniques and applications in fields and contexts (pp. 115-146). Madrid: Editorial Sanz i Torres.