PAR is proud to announce that the following software products are now available for direct download to your computer through our Web site, www.parinc.com:

Simply click on the product page link and select the Download item code or the Download with CD-ROM item code to have a backup CD mailed to you.

We hope you will enjoy being able to download software products directly from PAR and hope to make more products available in this way in the future. We are conducting a survey to see which other software products you would like to be made available in this format.


We appreciate your feedback. Thank you for helping us to understand how we can better serve you.

Recently PAR held a contest and asked its Customers to describe, in 300 words or less, their involvement in their favorite local charities. The winners are listed below and will receive cash donations in their names to the charities they submitted and support - $500 for the first place winner, $350 for second place winner, and $250 for the third place winner.

The winner of the PAR Community PARtners contest is Robert Mintz from Short Hills, NJ. Robert nominated a charity called Down The Block (http://www.downtheblock.org) that provides assistance to local residents who find themselves in financial distress. Robert described the charity as a “hyper-local” non-profit organization located in Millburn Township, NJ that focuses on assisting those who are not eligible for traditional support.

The second place winner is Shaun Keel who nominated Foster A Life (http://www.fosteralife.com). The organization’s mission is to provide services and opportunities to foster children to promote a more positive self-image and an increase in their self-esteem. They are a 100% volunteer organization, so all funding goes directly to the children.

The third place winner is Judith Mathewson who submitted an organization named Welcome Home Vets (http://www.whvets.org). This organization focuses on providing psychological, financial, or spiritual help to veterans returning home from combat as well as to their families.

Our congratulations and thanks to each of you for all the good work you do in your communities!

Download the entries from the winning contestants.

 

For more information about PAR's involvement in the community, please visit Community PARtners.

Due to Customer requests for a non-iPhone version of our successful application, the PAR Assessment Toolkit is now available on a variety of platforms and devices!

The PAR Assessment Toolkit can be accessed for free on any internet-enabled computer or mobile device. This helpful resource includes...

  • A Normal Curve, along with associated standard score conversions for a variety of metrics, that can be used to convey results to clients or professionals;

  • A Conversion Chart, which enables you to rapidly convert between T scores, z scores, percentiles, and standard scores;

  • An Age Calculator, which quickly generates an individual’s exact age in years, months, and days after you input his or her birth date;

  • A Mental Age Determiner, which enables you to input an individual’s chronological age and IQ and receive an estimate of his or her mental age;

  • A Stopwatch, which assists in the monitoring of timed assessments or performance tasks by enabling you to count down from a specified amount of time or count up from 00:00; and

  • A Compliancy Calculator, which helps you to comply with state and/or district mandates by quickly calculating the deadline for initial appointment set-up.

Dear Colleagues,

There are so many new and exciting things to tell you about—our newly updated Web site, our first blog, and the release of several innovative new products; and the availability of the Mini-Mental® State Examination, 2nd Edition™ (MMSE®-2™) forms in 10 new languages. I encourage you to take a few minutes to browse our Web site or download a PDF of our latest catalog and discover all that we have to offer.

Download a PDF of our latest catalog.


I am delighted to announce the upcoming release of four new products: the NEO™ Inventories (NEO-PI-3™/NEO-FFI-3™), the Emotional Disturbance Decision Tree™–Parent Form (EDDT™-PF), the Inventory of Legal Knowledge™ (ILK™), and the Memory for Intentions Test™ (MIST™).

  • The NEO-PI-3™ is a concise measure of the five major domains of personality, as well as the six traits that define each domain. Designed to provide a detailed assessment of personality in adolescents and adults, this new edition is appropriate for use with adolescents ages 12 years or older. Thirty-eight items have been revised or edited to lower the reading level and make the instrument more appropriate for younger examinees. In addition, new NEO tools have been created to enhance the usability of the NEO-PI-3™ in occupational and clinical settings. The  also has been revised.

  • The EDDT™-PF is designed to assist in the identification of children who qualify for the federal special education category of emotional disturbance (ED). Because many school districts require parental input when making eligibility decisions, the EDDT™-PF was developed to provide a standardized approach to the assessment of ED that encompasses the federal guidelines and addresses the broad emotional and behavioral nuances of this population.

  • The ILK™ is a 61-item, orally administered interview designed to help practitioners and researchers quickly evaluate response style in adolescents and adults undergoing evaluations for competence to proceed.

  • The MIST™ is an examiner-administered performance-based test of prospective memory skills—the ability to remember to carry out a task in the future.

Additionally, the new MMSE®-2™ forms are being translated into 10 languages, including Spanish for the U.S., German, Italian, Chinese, Dutch, Latin American Spanish, French, Russian, European Spanish, and Hindi. These translations will be available soon. Contact our Customer Support Center for more information.

Finally, I want to thank you for your continued support and for your business. We sincerely appreciate the opportunity to serve you.

R. Bob Smith III, PhD, Chairman and CEO

P.S. PAR has evaluated its proprietary software for compatibility with the recently released Windows® 7. Download our Windows 7 Compatibility Chart to find out if the version of PAR software you are using is compatible with Windows 7. If you have further questions, please call Technical Support at 1.800.899.8378.
Every once in a while a person or publication will try to rank the most influential people in the field of psychology, past and present. Inevitably each list delivers different results, so we want to bring the question to you. Fromm? Freud? Frasier? Who gets your vote? Is there a place on the list for popular culture?

We would love to hear who you think is the most influential person in the history of psychology and why. Please comment.

What made you decide initially to develop the Mini-Mental® State Examination (MMSE)?


We developed the MMSE to solve a clinical problem on a geriatric psychiatric inpatient service. The diagnoses of patients on our unit included depression, dementia, delirium, and occasional late-life schizophrenia. We needed a practical quantitative cognitive exam in order to aide clinicians in determining the severity of cognitive impairment ranging from mild to severe and to document improvement or decline.

At the time, Susan was a psychiatry resident rotating on the geriatric psychiatric unit where I (Marshal) was a junior attending. Always a perfectionist, she was not happy when I repeatedly asked for cognitive information that she had not asked about. So she asked me to write down all the items that I wanted her to include.

What made you decide to update it and create the Mini-Mental® State Examination, Second Edition™ (MMSE®-2™)?


Over the years, students and other users made many suggestions about how to improve the MMSE. There was a need to clarify the instructions so that certain tasks were administered; there was a need for phrases that were more easily translated into other languages; and users requested multiple forms in order to minimize practice effects with serial administration. In addition, we had long wanted to develop a shorter version that could be given very quickly in busy clinical settings, and also a longer version that would eliminate ceiling effects. We wanted this longer version to be more sensitive than the original MMSE to disorders of executive function and to the kinds of memory impairment found in mild cognitive impairment.

What would you like to tell people about the MMSE-2 that they may not know?


The MMSE-2 Standard Version scores are equivalent to the original MMSE scores. We took care that subjects tested during development scored the same, regardless of whether they were given the original MMSE or the MMSE-2 Standard Version. Longitudinal studies currently underway can switch to the new version without any adjustment to scores. The original, unrevised MMSE is still available if users do not want to change to the revised versions.

How do you spend your free time?


Marshal takes flute lessons and is trying to improve his photography. Susan enjoys gardening and reading spy novels, biographies, Jane Austen, and Patrick O’Brian. She has a new job at the University of Miami School of Medicine with a joint appointment in psychiatry and in the Hussman Institute for Human Genomics. We both like to write and watch old movies.

34

The percentage of psychologists who are self-employed—mainly as private practitioners.*


12

The percentage of employment growth expected between 2008 and 2018 for the overall field of psychology. Clinical, counseling, and school psychology are expected to grow about 11%, while industrial-organization psychology is expected to grow 26%.*


6,800

The projected number of additional neuropsychologists that will be needed by 2018 to keep up with demand.*


2

The number of states that currently allow appropriately-trained psychologists to prescribe medications (Louisiana and New Mexico).*


170,200

The number of jobs held by psychologists in 2008.*


0.270%

The percentage of the employed population who are psychologists in New Mexico, the state with the highest concentration of psychologists. Massachusetts, New York, Vermont, and Connecticut all have concentrations of more than 0.1% of their respective populations.*


$87,130

The annual mean wage for psychologists in New Jersey, the top paying state for psychologists.*


93,000

According to the American Psychological Association’s (APA) Center for Workforce Studies, the number of practicing psychologists in the U.S.


31

The number of psychologists who are members of a union.*

*Information from the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics.
By: James Swain (www.jimswain.com)

Question: It sounds like security is important issue.
Bob Smith: Absolutely. There has always been an issue of test security. People who steal tests are not only costing us money, but they’re also harming the industry and depriving the test authors of royalties. Having a stolen test floating around is potentially quite harmful.

Question: It’s not easy to stop people from stealing, especially in the Internet age. What steps are you taking to stop people from pirating your company’s material?
Cathy Smith: We have two employees who regularly surf the web, looking for people who are reproducing our content without permission. They’ve gotten very good at catching these folks and getting them to delete any of our content off their Web sites.

Bob Smith: On every order we send out, there’s a statement on our Order Form that says the Customer agrees to abide by the rules and not reproduce our products without written permission. 

Question:
How do you deal with someone who you catch stealing PAR products?
Bob Smith: Usually, a letter or phone call asking them to stop will do. Most people ultimately want to do the right thing.

Question: What if it doesn’t?
Bob Smith: We have hired attorneys in numerous situations to protect our copyrights, and we will continue to do so.

Question: Recently, a student at Harvard was prosecuted for downloading and sharing music files. A noted law professor at Harvard defended him in court and used the argument that the Internet is meant to be a free medium, and therefore cannot be controlled. The student lost the case, and is now on the hook for $400,000 in damages. How do you feel about that?
Bob Smith: I agree with the verdict. The student was stealing.

Question: What would you say to someone who was thinking of pirating your company’s material or tests?
Bob Smith: Don’t do it. Our products are very useful and they are valuable products that are used to help people make better decisions. By infringing on the copyright, you could help to invalidate the measure, causing harm not only to the instrument, but to the test publishing industry, the authors, and most importantly, to the client/patient.

PAR’s position is that Customers may not release copyrighted and confidential material to individuals not professionally qualified to obtain, review, or interpret them. PAR’s instruments are trade secrets protected by intellectual property laws, including copyright and trade secret laws. Their usefulness and validity would be greatly compromised if they were available to the general public.

Cathy Smith: All materials in our catalog and on our Web site are protected by copyright. This applies to all Web site information, testing products, and everything associated with them.

Submitting a completed PAR Qualification Form and/or placing an order to purchase materials from PAR implies your acceptance of these terms and conditions.

Question: Do you allow your tests to be rented?
Bob Smith: No, our products are not for rent. We do encourage the use of our proprietary tests in research projects. However, we require that a formal written permission agreement be obtained from PAR prior to beginning the work if a modified version or only a portion of test is needed.

Question: It sounds like you run a pretty tight ship.
Bob Smith: It has always been this way in this industry. Test products must be kept secure. Our products are highly restricted and will stay that way.
By: James Swain (www.jimswain.com)

Every business that produces copyrighted material–from movies to TV to books–is facing the issue of intellectual piracy of its products. I sat down to discuss this topic with Bob and Cathy Smith to see how PAR is dealing with the important issues of copyright infringement and test security.

Question: A couple of basic questions first. When did PAR start creating its own products?
Bob Smith: When PAR first got started, the majority of the products we sold were developed externally by authors and sent to us for publication consideration. If we accepted a product, we would provide editorial and production assistance and then market the product. As the company grew, so did our ability to provide a collaborative, internal system of developing products. Today, we internally develop most of our test products in collaboration with outside authors.

Question: What do you see as being the big difference between developing tests now versus when you got started?
Bob Smith: It’s much more expensive now to develop tests than it was in 1977. Unfortunately, the potential revenue doesn’t support the development of some good products today. And because it is so expensive to develop most new tests and because our staff has great test development expertise, we most often develop tests in collaboration with external authors.

Question: Is there an average length of time for creating a test?
Bob Smith: Typically, it takes 3-5 years to develop a test from its conceptual stage to a finished product.

Question: Can you tell me how many tests are presently in the development stages?
Cathy Smith: We presently have over 40 tests and new software products in development.

Question: There is presently in our culture a philosophy among certain individuals that the Internet was intended to be free, and therefore it is not a crime to download books, music, and movies, and then share them with other people. How do you feel about that?
Bob Smith: I strongly disagree with the current philosophy that all information on the Internet was intended to be free to share. It costs a significant amount of money to develop a product.

Question:  People who steal copyrighted material often don’t understand the ramifications of their crimes. For example, the music industry has seen an enormous decrease in new music being released. At the same time, the price of tickets to live music events is skyrocketing. As a result, going to concerts is becoming something that only a small portion of our society can now do because of cost.

The same thing is happening with books. Last year, Publisher’s Weekly reported that $3 billion dollars in books were stolen over the Internet. As a result, the industry has raised prices on books a whopping 15-25%, making it difficult for many people to buy books.

Do you see the same thing happening in your industry?
Bob Smith: Thankfully, no. We’re in an industry where the sale of our products is restricted to those who have certain qualifications as well as the training to use our tests. In addition, the tests are supposed to be kept secure. People in our industry understand that a stolen test could completely invalidate its use. So stealing is not nearly as prevalent as it is in other industries, at least not yet.

Cathy Smith: We are very careful about whom we sell our tests to and how our tests are distributed.

Question: What about people who try the old-fashioned approach and illegally Xerox your tests?
Bob Smith: In addition to having the copyright notice on all our tests, we also print a warning on our tests that states that if this test is not printed in a specific color of ink on white paper, then it’s an illegal copy.

Question: Has anyone ever reported illegal use of your tests?
Bob Smith: Yes. And we follow up on every one that is reported to us. Sometimes we even have to notify the head of an organization that one of their employees is illegally reproducing our tests.

Visit our blog Thursday, May 27th for the conclusion of this blog on the topic of intellectual piracy.
By: James Swain (www.jimswain.com)

Question: There are signs all throughout the PAR buildings that say, “Customer Service Is Our Most Important Product.” That’s not just a slogan, is it?
Cathy Smith: No, it’s a way of life here at PAR. The difference between PAR and other companies is our service. PAR employees live and breathe Customer Service.

Bob Smith: I was determined that regular communication with our Customers and outstanding Customer Service would be two qualities that would distinguish PAR from competitors. Excellent Customer Service has long been a core value of the company, from answering the phones with a live person to fulfilling orders on the day of receipt, responding to Customer e-mail inquiries within 24 hours, and providing error-free shipments.

Years ago, a Customer named David Nichols wrote me a letter when a product he’d purchased was delayed in shipping. He said that “... it was not right to promote your products, take Customers’ money, and then not deliver the product... delaying product delivery is not right.” I’ve never forgotten that. And, since David wrote that letter, he and I became good friends and we remain so today.

Question: What does that mean for your Customers?
Cathy Smith: Every year we ship tens of thousands of packages with an amazingly small number of shipping errors. Our distribution staff prides itself on making sure that our Customers receive exactly what they ordered as quickly as possible. We get thank you notes from our Customers all the time, telling us how much they appreciate our Customer Service and outstanding delivery and shipping.

Question: Having once run a business myself, I learned that happy employees lead to a high degree of Customer satisfaction. Do you find the same to be true?
Bob Smith: Yes! We measure Customer satisfaction in many ways. We send comment cards in every order, which all management staff read when they are filled out and returned by the Customer. We also do Customer surveys and talk to our Customers. We also offer an excellent return policy. If a Customer is not satisfied with a purchase, we will accept the return of any item—no questions asked.

Question: Three of your competitors recently merged. How do you see that affecting your business?
Bob Smith: The merger has helped us differentiate ourselves from our competition, and enabled us to be responsive to Customer needs by continuing to deliver outstanding Customer Service and innovative new products to our Customers.

Question: PAR has come a long way since 1978. What do you see the future holding?
Bob Smith: We will continue to innovate, grow, and evolve, and we will continue to take care of our Customers. Our company is not for sale, and PAR will remain family owned.

Question: I first became aware of you and Cathy through your philanthropic work in the Tampa area. Can you tell me more about the causes you’re involved in, and why you feel it’s important to give back to the community?
Cathy Smith: Twenty years ago, Bob and I decided that it was our corporate responsibility to give back to the community in which we lived. Over the years, that commitment has grown, and last year we donated to more than 80 organizations in the Tampa Bay area, including the Humane Society, Meals on Wheels, United Way, and a scholarship program at the University of South Florida, to name just a few. We also encourage our staff to participate in community activities and to support local charities.

Question: One final question. You recently adopted a new slogan. Why?
Bob Smith: We shortened our name from Psychological Assessment Resources to PAR, because that’s what our Customers called us. We changed our slogan to “Creating Connections. Changing Lives.” It sums up not only what we do every day, but it captures what we aspire to do as well.