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Lektion 1, Thema 1
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Psychological Aptitude and Personality Tests

“Genuine” Psychological Tests

“Genuine” psychological tests, for instance tests that deal with questions of the applicant’s psyche and use psychological methods, are questionable under data protection law because they often lead to the inadmissible creation of personality profiles. This applies all the more to the formerly popular graphological assessments. Stress tests are also often inadmissible, unless it is a matter of applying for professions that require a special degree of stress resilience – this includes firefighters and police, pilots and astronauts, but also court employees.

“Psychological tests” in name only

In many cases, however, tests are also referred to as “psychological tests” in the application situation, which are in fact about the questioning of knowledge and/or the measurement of intelligence. Tests of knowledge can be permissible if they are job-related. Intelligence tests can also be permissible under data protection law if they are job-related. However, in the case of intelligence tests, there is a greater risk of creating personality profiles than in the case of knowledge tests, which in turn is inadmissible.

Recruitment Screening

A recruitment investigation is only permissible under data protection law if the applicant has given effective consent.  In turn, high requirements must be placed on the effectiveness of the consent, which will rarely be met.

The employment examination cannot serve to obtain information about such data, which may not be asked for. The examining health professional may also only generally provide the employer with the information that the applicant is suitable or unsuitable for the prospective job. He may not provde the employer with details about the result of the examination, but only the applicant himself.

As a rule, drug, alcohol and HIV tests of applicants are inadmissible. The same applies to (other) blood tests.