Article

Military Selection and Classification in the United States

Michael G. Rumsey

in The Oxford Handbook of Military Psychology

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780195399325
Published online September 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195399325.013.0054

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

Military Selection and Classification in the United States

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This chapter describes military selection and classification research in the United States from a historical perspective. It describes the evolution of enlisted selection and classification measures from Army Alpha and Beta in 1917 to current explorations into non-cognitive tools. Major developments, such as the transition from service-specific test batteries to the joint service Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) and the joint service project to link enlistment standards to job performance, are given special attention. Officer screening has evolved separately from enlisted screening, and is given separate treatment in this chapter. Both enlisted testing and officer testing have been characterized by a historical progression from fairly broad measures of cognitive ability to a more comprehensive approach, involving not only an expansion of the cognitive components assessed, but also an increasing attention to non-cognitive dimensions. While enlisted and officer testing have many features in common, two themes that have received more emphasis in officer selection are the work in identifying measures that predict aviation success, and the development of realistic assessment centers to validate predictors of officer success. The success of the military in developing enlisted and officer measures that predict important outcomes is a major chapter focus.

Keywords: Military; selection; classification; enlisted; officer; non-cognitive; ASVAB; validate; aviation; performance

Article.  14543 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Social Psychology ; Organizational Psychology

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