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The 'Timothy I' psychological test, England, 1921-1950

The ‘Timothy I’ test was designed by the National Institute of Industrial Psychology (NIIP). It tested workers’ suitability for mechanical trades. Prospective apprentices inspected the miniature machine. The machine was removed from their sight and reconfigured. The speed and ease with which they returned it to its original form was believed to reflect their mechanical aptitude. The NIIP was set up in Britain in 1921. It applied physiology and psychology to industry and business to improve efficiency. Unlike their female counterparts, many men were shielded from psychological testing by trade unions.

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Glossary: psychological test

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