Marianne Miserandino has found a way to make learning about reliability and validity more fun by using the Ice Cream Personality Test.

You can obtain a copy of the test from any of the following sites:

      www.personalityquiz.net/foodtests/icecream.htm

      http://www.icecream.com/funfacts/index.asp?b=104

      http://www.angelfire.com/ga/sweetgeorgiapeach/icecream.html

      http://www.panix.com/~clp/humor/tests/ice-cream.html

      http://www.squidoo.com/icecreampersonality

 

Procedure: Students ask five or more friends two questions:

                1. Of the following ice cream flavors, which do they prefer:

                            a. vanilla,

                            b. chocolate,

                            c. butter pecan,

                            d.  banana,

                            e.strawberry, or

                            f. chocolate chip.

                2. Which of the following six personality descriptions bests fits them:

  1. Colorful, impulsive, a risk taker who sets high goals and has high expectations of yourself.
  2. Lively, creative, dramatic, charming, enthusiastic and the life of the party.
  3. Orderly, perfectionist, careful, detail-oriented, conscientious, ethical and fiscally conservative.
  4. Easy going, well adjusted, generous, honest and empathetic.
  5. Shy, yet emotionally robust, skeptical, detail-oriented, opinionated, introverted and self critical
  6. Competitive and competent.
     

Validity

           

            To evaluate the validity of the test, students can use a table like the one below and a chi square test to determine whether the participantsí personality descriptions relate to ice cream preferences.

                       

Favorite flavor

Personality Self-Description

 

Colorful, ...

Lively, ...

Orderly, ...

Easy going, ...

Shy,...

Generous,...

Vanilla

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chocolate

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butter pecan

 

 

 

 

 

 

Banana

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strawberry

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chocolate chip

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reliability

 

Test-retest reliability can be estimated by having students re-administer the test to each friend a week later.

                       

Time 1 Preference

Time 2 Preference

 

Vanilla

Chocolate

Butter pecan

Banana

Strawberry

Chocolate chip

Vanilla

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chocolate

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butter pecan

 

 

 

 

 

 

Banana

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strawberry

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chocolate chip

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Students can download the following Windows program that will analyze their data for them.

Alternatively, they could use one of the following online chi square calculators:

http://home.ubalt.edu/ntsbarsh/Business-stat/otherapplets/Catego.htm

http://www.physics.csbsju.edu/cgi-bin/stats/contingency_form.sh?nrow=6&ncolumn=6

http://people.ku.edu/~preacher/chisq/chisq.htm

http://www.opus12.org/Chi-Square_Calculator.html

 

 

 To have students do this exercise, you can give students this "plain vanilla" handout.

Alternatively, if you limit the flavors to five by eliminating the chocolate chip option, you can give them the following handout.

 To show students the problems that would have resulted had they simply asked participants whether the Ice Cream Personality Test's description seemed to fit, you could have students fill out a test that provides Barnum statements as feedback.

 

 

Source:

Miserandino, M. (2006). I scream, you scream: Teaching validity and reliability via the

            ice cream personality test. Teaching of Psychology, 33, 265-268.


 

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