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The Test - Orientation or Manipulation

The administration of tests now moves out of
the psychological area into the prediction of
the future. [...] We will fully exploit the
superstitious belief of people in prophesy.
L. Ron Hubbard [1]

Any product which is not used correctly runs the risk of getting a bad name, even though it is of good quality. That is how it goes with Scientology's unlicensed version of the "Oxford Capacity Analysis" personality test, which is one of the products of PP Prosys Perception AG.

The public recognizes it by the friendly, young people who hand out questionnaires on the street, or invite you to come into the Dianetics or Scientology Center to take the test.

A personality test is a process by which marked characteristics, such as degree of nervousness or creative ability, are brought to light by answering a series of questions. We are familiar with the first personality test in the bible: Adam and Eve failed it when they partook of the apple. That is how simple it was in those days. Personality tests should help to evaluate people, to diagnose possible future developments, to bring out strengths, to look more closely into problem areas, or simply to get a picture of a person. In principle they are a substitute for a lengthy and (for the most part not possible) intensive observation and discussion with the person.

Tests can also be of use for the person being tested. He can gain new perceptions of himself, or confirm those talents with which he is already familiar.

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On the other hand, personality tests are not infallible, and probably never will be. Ideally, one could tell how nervous a person is with a few questions. Since that is not possible, many questions are asked in the area of nervousness. The sum of the answers should make possible a conclusion with regards to the degree of nervousness.

Tests must be regularly re-evaluated, and should be adapted to new social conditions. A person who takes the test [2] which is offered by Scientology "for free with no conditions attached," is surprised by the extent and clarity of the information about himself which has been gathered in such a short time. It only takes the Scientology staff member a few days to learn how to talk to an interested individual about where his personality deficiencies lie. Scientology courses are supposed to serve the purpose of alleviating these deficiencies.

The Scientology Test Interpretation

Good test results do not mean a thing for Scientology, outside of that is what a person obtains after having received a Scientology service. The Handbook of Scientology Test Analysis for the recruitment of new members reads:

A person whose entire curve is high, at the top, is not really in all that good of a situation. [...] This person is actually alienated and does not really have a good grasp on reality. The person is absolutely not where his curve indicates he is.

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By the above Scientology is saying that a person who has not taken any Scientology courses cannot have a perfectly balanced personality. That means that the test evaluator already has the conviction, in advance, that nobody can find happiness without Scientology. Therefore an honest evaluation of the person being tested is not guaranteed.

Another peculiarity in the use of the Scientology test consists of the rule that a person may not go past any word he does not understand without looking it up in the dictionary or asking about it. Doing that would, according to Scientology, dilute the accuracy of the test so that the results would be altered by some means other than that of Scientology services. That is, of course, nonsense, because this is not something which tests a person's gift of speech. By enforcing this rule, the test results can be falsified, simply on the basis of a question which has been wrongly understood.

Youths between the ages of 14 and 18 are gauged according to their own standard scale. Scientology uses this without knowing that the basis of this calculated scale was, and continues to be imprecise. The developer of the test, shortly before her death, was working on a modification to the test in regards to youth, in which she was re-working, not only the scale, but the answers as well. That is because various questions are not suited for younger people. Some of these questions are understood only with difficulty, or they have a different meaning for them than they do for adults.

The Scientology directive states that a test evaluation lasts "about 10 to 12 minutes." [3] This means that a person must have their results explained to them in several minutes, always getting his deficiencies across to him and letting him know that "Scientology can help with this or that personality trait."

No discussion of a relatively complex test can take place in short short a period of time if one wants to be serious and not deal with it in an offhand manner.

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Practically nothing can be done in less than an hour; the general rule is somewhat more. That is, unless the test is used solely to plunge a person into mental conflict and stress, so that the person can then be told that he can now come out of this conflict only with the help of definite Scientology services... [4]

The discussion of the test results follows an introduction which has been learned by rote, and which contains clear instructions, as determined by the Scientology handbook, "Scientometric Testing."

The intention is that the person be brought to a realization. The more resistant a person is, or the more he argues, the more this point should be driven home. Look him straight in the eye and say, "This is it."

As soon as you have had an effect, look the subject in the eye and say urgently [literally: with intention], "Scientology can help you with this," or "That can be changed with Scientology," or some other similar positive statement.

NEVER say it halfheartedly or apologetically.!

Do not be overly concerned with the high marks. If the person questions these, tell him that it is the lower marks which are the source of his problems -- and that these can be changed. If the majority of the marks are high, then you can mention that, because of those high marks, it will be easier for this person to use Scientology to improve himself.

This last paragraph shows that this is not a balanced analysis at all. It shows that this whole procedure is nothing more than a sales pitch. The offer to the unsuspecting passersby of a test which is "free and without obligation" is true, but what the public does not know is that the internal rules do not permit a serious evaluation of the test.

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Two other tests are offered along with the personality test. If these are used, the evaluator is supposed to say:

"With these results and the lower points of your personality curve, you will..." (Use your knowledge of Scientology here and make an assessment.)

That's not a pretty picture, is it? Unless you would be interested in changing it."

At this point the evaluator leans back in his chair, points to the curve with his pencil, smiles, and says:

Now, Mr./Mrs./Miss ... - this is what your test shows."

Thank you very much.

The evaluator does not try for anything more, nor does he try to sell anything. If he has done his job well, then the person should be concerned, and will probably ask what could be done about this. If that is the case, the evaluator says:

It is very commendable that you want to do something about this. That says something for you.

There are many things that you can do. There are all sorts of things that people get worked up about. They used to try psychology, psychoanalysis, Dale Carnegie, courses to build up self-confidence, mental exercises, and material out of books, but all those things have only a very limited use, and could result in unknown consequences, a waste of money, and lost time, before you were able to find a solution to your difficulties. All over the world, people come to us in order to find a simpler, more direct answer." [Now the evaluator turns confidential:]

"Look, I'm part of the technical staff. I don't have anything to do with sales or courses. But if you want my word on it, there are all kinds of courses being given here."

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The best thing to do is to take a beginning course to find out what Scientology can offer you. That will save you from having to get involved. Go to that person over there, and tell her that you only want to take a beginning course so that you can find out what Scientology is."

Then send the person to the public registrar, together with the tests and the evaluation results.

With neither muss nor fuss the man on the street discovers deficiencies in his personality in only a few minutes, and the diagnosis and the treatment is immediately handed to him. Linked to an actual suggestion for recovery! According to this script, this is nothing more than putting a person into a condition of psychic liability, then telling him that his only salvation lies in buying a Scientology course. It is not, by any means, a serious discussion of test results.

The Test in Business

Business consultants licensed by Scientology praise the Scientology variant of the test as the "only" criteria by which a company can be sure of its personnel selection. These companies include U-MAN, MAN AGE SA, W&K;Unternehmerservice, CHOICE, TCM TSCHUPPERT AG, and also SILHOUET in the Scandinavian countries and Holland. The fact that this is not the only criteria, that any other comparable means would also serve the purpose, is ignored. Inexperienced recruiters who lend credence to this idea can rapidly become dependent upon it since the "specialists" have altered their old standards. The use of the product in areas of business requires a critical eye and a regular supervision and modification in regard to social change and the limits by which such an instrument are bound. [5]

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A criteria for the Scientology variant of the personality test is that if more than 50 percent of the questions are answered with "I don't know", then the test cannot be reliably graded. Under unfavorable circumstances, just five or ten "I don't knows" can throw the results off considerably. No valid test can determine anything with 49 percent of the answers unknown other than that the person is very insecure, he does not understand the questions, or that he does not want to answer the questions. The WISE consultants also continue to make this miscalculation.

In view of the Scientology promotion structure it can be deduced that the WISE business consultants, unless otherwise inclined, must give the test according to exact Scientology instructions - if they are not already doing so.

This is how a fine instrument can be used in a way which is so imprecise as to harm one's reputation.



The Test - Orientation or Manipulation

  1. Ron Hubbard (HCO PL October 28, 1960),
    News Testing Promotion Section. [Return]
  2. Scientology expressly states that "their" personality test is not psychological. It must do this because psychology belongs to their large list of enemies. The expression Scientometric Testing was invented as a contrast to the standard term Psychometric Testing. [Return]
  3. Hubbard article of November 24, 1960, Warning on New PE. [Return]
  4. It is obvious that Scientology services are sold with the aid of the test. Scientology, itself, admits that 20 percent of its new members are gained as a result of the test. [Return]
  5. 5. A former U-MAN customer, personnel director of a large enterprise, said that he had stopped U-MAN because his employees only paid attention to the last page of the U-MAN analysis where it said whether the person was recommended or not. They no longer were taking part in the complete decision-making process. [Return]