Psychometrics in Psychological Research: Role Model or Partner in Science?
Its direct meaning derives from a mathematical model, not a psychological theory, about test validity, including relationships with other interesting variables. A psychometric psychologist administers and interprets psychological tests. If you think it would be Psychometry Defined. Even if you're unaware of it, you. Psychometrics is a field of study concerned with the theory and technique of psychological measurement. As defined by the National Council on Measurement in Education (NCME), . Item response theory models the relationship between latent traits and responses to test items. Among other advantages, IRT provides a.
- Psychometry Defined
- Who Develops and Administers Tests?
- Credible Tests
The best that can happen, indeed, is that the item response model fits the data, which may then be taken as support for the hypothesis that the test is driven by inductive reasoning. However, there is no way in which it can be decided that at a certain point the evidence is complete, other than that different researchers of good reputation agree that it does Hofstee, How might additional evidence look in our inductive reasoning example?
It might have the form of other tests for inductive reasoning that use a different kind of item, yet be hypothesized to elicit the same or nearly the same cognitive processes as the previous test. Different cognitive skills or item properties might be distinguished using the new test sand a componential item response model e.
Both the fit and the misfit of such models can contribute valuable knowledge to theory formation for inductive reasoning. A new set of items may give rise to another—that is, not exactly the same as the first—latent trait or even a set of latent sub traits, which is not at all unlikely in an item set designed to elicit different skills or to let different item properties exercise their influence on cognitive processes.
Psychometrics in Psychological Research: Role Model or Partner in Science?
This need not worry anyone, as long as one sees latent variables as tools for summarizing data, not entities independent of the data on which they are fitted. My conclusion is that statistical latent variables help describe variation in data that is consistent with a putative psychological attribute; but, in isolation, goodness of fit of a latent variable model to data does not illuminate the existence or functioning of the attribute.
Construct Validation Based on the assumptions that psychological attributes exist and exercise a causal influence on item responses and that latent variables represent psychological attributes, Borsboom proposes to limit the process of construct validation to latent variable modeling of item response data alone and discard studying relationships with other variables in a nomological network.
I just explained that I disagree with the second assumption; below I will comment on the first. This conception excludes tests for the vast majority of psychological attributes that are not supported by the kind of detailed and established theory that Borsboom seems to have in mind.
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Taking substantive theory as a starting point for test construction is an excellent idea that has existed for a long time but is not widely practiced. The reason probably is that much theory is still in its puberty, infancy, or even at the fetal stage. Given this state of affairs one often has no other choice than to cling onto about every piece of evidence available in learning about test validity, including relationships with other interesting variables.
There is no reason to exclude well-developed theories about attributes and their tests. For example, transitive reasoning is an example of a theoretically well-developed attribute Bouwmeester,but its relationship with several verbal abilities may be interesting in its own right.
Such studies are justified when different researchers of good reputation disagree about this relationship, and may shed more light on transitive reasoning but also, perhaps unexpectedly, on verbal intelligence. Elegant in its rigor but impractical for psychology and many others areas. In the absence of such knowledge, I prefer to consider psychological attributes as organizational principles with respect to behavior.
Thus, my point of view is that psychological attributes define which behaviors hang together well and are useful to the degree in which tests sampling these behaviors play a role in predicting interesting psychological phenomena. The State of Psychological Research: A Case Study In his own words, Borsboom sketches a grim picture of psychological academic research.
I agree that occasionally psychologists are capable of wild adventures but not unlike any breed of academicians—including those involved in psychometrics, I would like to add. However, I believe psychology is in a better state than Borsboom suggests. I also think that psychometrics has much help to offer, but perhaps less spectacularly than Borsboom would hope for.
Here is what I see in present-day test and questionnaire construction. At the time of writing this reaction, I was involved in several projects together with researchers from education, psychology, marketing, and medicine. Each of them uses questionnaires to measure an attribute: In order to regulate testing and promote responsible use of validated tests, governing bodies created a manual of standards and guidelines for psychometric tests.
Standards are reviewed and updated every several years and incorporate changes in law and updates in validity testing and social understanding, such as testing individuals with different cultural backgrounds and disabilities, to continue to minimize bias error in testing. These standards are designed for use by psychometricians as well as professionals working in education, counseling, and employment. They address issues such as fairness and the rights and responsibilities of test takers and administrators.
The implications of non-standardized or non-validated tests are obvious. Opponents fear that great mental, social and legal harm can be done when unsubstantiated results from poorly constructed or unvetted tests are used in childhood development, the workplace, or a court of law.
Opportunities Rising for those in Psychometrics An increased use of psychological assessment and testing in the workplace has caused the field of Psychometrics to expand rapidly over the last several years. Dozens of companies worldwide offer psychometric testing services, competing for the business of schools, governments, and private corporations.
Psychometrics - Wikipedia
This includes providing the tests, the instructions for administration of the tests, and providing the analysis and results to clients. One field that especially draws on the expertise of psychometricians is industrial-organizational psychology.
These psychologists apply psychometrics in employee selection and training; performance analysis; and workplace organization. Psychometricians also work in universities, school systems, and in private practice.
When working in the educational system, psychometricians are almost always required to obtain a certification in psychometry. To learn more about the world of psychometrics and career options in this field, request information from schools offering degree programs in psychometry or related psychology programs.
Psychometrics in Practice Psychometrics has now come to encompass all aspects of psychological testing, ranging from early intelligence tests to post traumatic stress disorder PTSD tests to personality and interest tests.
There are three main areas that psychometric tests measure. These divergent responses are reflected to a large extent within alternative approaches to measurement.
For example, methods based on covariance matrices are typically employed on the premise that numbers, such as raw scores derived from assessments, are measurements.
Such approaches implicitly entail Stevens' definition of measurement, which requires only that numbers are assigned according to some rule. The main research task, then, is generally considered to be the discovery of associations between scores, and of factors posited to underlie such associations.
On the other hand, when measurement models such as the Rasch model are employed, numbers are not assigned based on a rule. Instead, in keeping with Reese's statement above, specific criteria for measurement are stated, and the objective is to construct procedures or operations that provide data which meet the relevant criteria.
Measurements are estimated based on the models, and tests are conducted to ascertain whether it has been possible to meet the relevant criteria. Instruments and procedures The first psychometric instruments were designed to measure the concept of intelligence.
Contrary to a fairly widespread misconcoption, there is no compelling evidence that it is possible to measure innate intelligence through such instruments, in the sense of an innate learning capacity unaffected by experience, nor was this the original intention when they were developed.
Nevertheless, IQ tests are useful tools for various purposes. An alternative conception of intelligence is that cognitive facilities within individuals are a manifestation of a general component, or general intelligence factoras well as cognitive capacity specific to a given domain. Psychometrics is applied widely in educational assessment to measure abilities in domains such as reading, writing, and mathematics.
The main approaches in applying tests in these domains have been Classical Test Theory and the more modern Item Response Theory and Rasch measurement models. These modern approaches permit joint scaling of persons and assessment items, which provides a basis for mapping of developmental continua by allowing descriptions of the skills displayed at various points along a continuum.
Such approaches provide powerful information regarding the nature of developmental growth within various domains.
Another major focus in psychometrics have been on personality testing. There have been a range of theoretical approaches to conceptualising and measuring personality. Attitudes have also been studied extensively in psychometrics. A common approach to the measurement of attitudes is the use of the Likert scale. Theoretical approaches Psychometric theory involves several distinct areas of study. First, psychometricians have developed a large body of theory used in the development of mental tests and analysis of data collected from these tests.
An approach which is similar to IRT but also quite distinctive, in terms of its origins and features, is represented by the Rasch model for measurement. The development of the Rasch model, and the broader class of models to which it belongs, was explicitly founded on requirements of measurement in the physical sciences Rasch, Second, psychometricians have developed methods for working with large matrices of correlations and covariances.