The term “psychometric” comes from a combination of the Greek word psyche (“mind”) and the English word metric (“a standard system of measurement”); the word literally means “mind measurement.” A psychometric test, then, is a test used to measure a quality, state, or process of the mind. (For more detailed discussion, follow this link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychometrics.)
The tests we use result in numerical scores in three areas: intellect; character; interests.
Intellectual scores index a candidate’s learning and problem-solving strengths as they relate to firefighting. Research as shown that firefighters need four intellectual strengths to perform effectively: verbal; mathematical; reasoning; mechanical.
Character scores index a candidate’s personal and interpersonal strengths as they relate to firefighting. Research has shown that firefighters need nine characteristics to perform effectively: responsibility; team work; desire to learn; getting along with others; stress resistance; courage; activity; cleanliness; socialization.
Interest scores index a candidate’s work interests as they relate to firefighting. Research has shown that firefighters need to have an interest in two kinds of work activities to be effective: construction and medical.
The 15 intellectual, character, and interest competencies were identified through the most in-depth analysis ever conducted of the job of firefighter. They have been updated over time to reflect changes in the role with the advent of new technology and have been customized to meet the demands placed on firefighters in specific fire departments.
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