Psychology Dictionary -- T


A standard score that sets the mean to fifty and standard deviation to ten. Used on a number of tests including the MMPI.


A group of statistics used to determine if a significance difference exists between the means of two sets of data.


The sense of touch.


See Thematic Apperception Test


A person’s typical way of responding to his or her environment.

Temporal Lobe

One of the four lobes of the brain. Contains the auditory cortex and therefore plays a role in receptive language as well as memory and emotion.

Test-Retest Reliability

The correlation coefficient determined by comparing the scores of the same measuring device administered to the same people on two different occasions.

Tetrachoric Correlation

A correlational technique used to estimate the Pearson-Product correlation of two continuous variables that have been dichotomized (Example: age is continuous, but when it is split into two groups, such as over 40 and under 40, it becomes dichotomous).


Considered the central switching station of the brain because all of the body’s senses (except the olfactory senses) pass through this before being relayed to the brain.

Thematic Apperception Test (TAT)

A subjective personality test where ambiguous pictures are shown to a subject and they are asked to tell a story related to them.


A general idea about the relationship of two or more variables.

Time Series Design

A research design where subjects are measured at specific times before and after the treatment has been administered in order to determine the long term effects of the treatment


A relatively permanent internal characteristic (e.g., friendly, outgoing)


Intense feelings directed toward the therapist that many clients experience in the process of therapy.

Trial and Error Learning

Learning that takes place through the application of possible solutions to a problem.

True Experiment

Research design that utilizes the most control over subjects and utilizes randomization

True Score

the amount of the observed score that truly represents what you are intending to measure.


An Analysis of Variance used when there are two independent variables.

Type A Personality

A theory used to describe a person with a significant number of traits focused on urgency, impatience, success, and excessive competition.

Type B Personality

A theory used to describe person with a significant number of traits focused on relaxation, lack of urgency, and normal or reduced competition.

Type I Error

The error that is committed when a true null hypothesis is rejected erroneously. The probability of a Type I Error is abbreviated with the lowercase Greek letter alpha.

Type II Error

The error that is committed when a false null hypothesis is accepted erroneously. The probability of a Type II Error is abbreviated with the uppercase Greek letter beta.