Exam 1 Study Guide
1) Describe major milestones in the history of testing.
c. 22002000 BC Chinese civil service exams
Carl Frederich Gauss and the normal distribution
Civil Service exams in Europe
By 1883, American Civil Service Commission established
Francis Galton: Sets up an anthropometric lab at the International Exposition of 1884 First intelligence test: BinetSimon Scale of 1905
30 items of increasing difficulty
Same instructions and format for ALL children
Created norms by which performance one child can be compared with other children
1916: BinetSimon translated for US use
Army Alpha required reading ability
Army Beta did not require reading ability
Testing “frenzy” hits between WWI and 1930s
Woolworth Personal Data Sheet
First objective personality test meant to aid in psychiatric interviews Developed during WWI
Designed to screen out soldiers unfit for duty
Herman Rorscharch inkblot test (1921)
Started with great suspicion; first serious study in 1932
Symmetric colored and black/white inkblot
College admission tests SAT and ACT
Wechsler Intelligence Scales
Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI)
2) Define test, measurement, and assessment.
test device or procedure in which a sample of an individual’s behavior is obtained, evaluated, and scored using standardized procedures Don't forget about the age old question of What do you call the limited nature of resources?
Measurement set of rules for assigning numbers to represent objects, traits, attributes, or behaviors We also discuss several other topics like Why must a government have checks and balances?
We also discuss several other topics like Why do birds usually hide their illness?
Assessment systematic procedure for collecting information that can be used to make inferences about the characteristics of people or objects
3) Describe and give examples of different types of tests.
Maximum performance tests
Assess the knowledge or skills of an individual in a content domain in
which they have received instruction
I.e. School exams
Designed to measure the cognitive skills, abilities, and knowledge that an individual has accumulated as the result of overall life experiences
I.e. SAT and ACT
Objective vs. subjective tests
Objective tests less disagreement in how it is graded
I.e. True/false, multiplechoice questions
Subjective tests different graders → different scores
I.e. Essay questions, openended questions, debates
Speed vs. power tests
Speed tests performance only reflects differences in the speed of
performance (how much you can do in a certain amount of time)
Power tests performance reflects difficulty of the items the test taker is able to answer correctly (I.e. GRE and SAT) We also discuss several other topics like What does john stuart mill believe about psychology and philosophy?
We also discuss several other topics like What is the significance of gitlow v new york?
Typical response tests We also discuss several other topics like What is the standard deviation of x?
Use items that are not influenced by the subjective judgment of the
person scoring the test
Presentation of unstructured or ambiguous material that elicits an almost infinite range of responses → requires subjectivity
4) Describe and give examples of different types of score interpretations.
Normreferenced scores: Interpretation is relative to other people
I.e. Percentile ranks
Criterionreferenced scores: Interpretation is absolute
I.e. Percent correct on an exam
5) Describe and explain the assumptions underlying psychological assessment. Psychological constructs (i.e. intelligence, depression, attitudes, etc.) exist Psychological constructs can be measured
Measurement is not perfect there is usually some degree of error is inherent in all measurements
There are different ways to measure a construct
All procedures have strengths and weaknesses
Multiple sources of information should be part of the process (think about the college application process)
Performance on tests can be generalized
Assessment can provide information
Assessments can be fair
Assessments can benefit individuals and society
6) Describe and explain the major applications of psychological assessments. diagnosis
Treatment planning and effectiveness
7) Explain why psychologists use tests?
people are not good at judging others
Tests provide objective information that helps us make better decisions 8) Describe the major participants in the assessment process.
people who develop tests
People who use tests
People who take tests
1) Describe how linear regression is used to predict performance.
Linear Regression a relationship best represented by a straight line allows you to predict values on one variable given information on another variable
2) Describe the different scales of measurement and give examples
Nominal Scales classify people or objects to categories, classes, or sets i.e. eye color, gender, type of sport, college major, music genre
Ordinal Scales there’s a clear order, but the magnitude makes no sense i.e. rank according to height, age classification
Interval Scales rank ppl or objects like an ordinal scale, but on a scale with equal units (i.e. IQ, temperature, percentile rank)
no true zero
Ratio Scales equal intervals between
i.e. weight in pounds, height of buildings in city, distance from one city to another, percentage score
3) Describe the measures of central tendency and their appropriate use.
Mean simple, arithmetic average
essential when calculating many useful stats
Median point that divides the distribution in half
often preferred with skewed distribution
Mode most frequent score
useful with nominal level data
4) Describe the measures of variability and their appropriate use.
Range = highest score lower score
standard deviation average distance that scores vary from mean variance special meaning as a theoretical concept
5) Correctly interpret descriptive statistics (e.g., skew, kurtosis). skewness
6) Explain the meaning of correlation coefficients and how they are used. Correlation coefficients quantitative measures of the relationship between two variables
designated by r
range from 1.0 to +1.0
sign of the coefficient
indicates the direction of the relationship
magnitude or absolute size
indicates strength of the relationship
7) Explain how scatterplots are used to describe the relationships between two variables.
8) Describe major types of correlation coefficients.
PearsonProduct Moment Correlation Coefficient
when variables are on an interval or ratio scale
Spearman Rank Correlation Coefficient
when variables are on an ordinal scale
PointBiserial Correlation Coefficient
one variable dichotomous; one on an interval or ratio scale
i.e. comparing gender with test scores
9) Distinguish between correlation and causation.
Correlation DOES NOT MEAN causation
1) Describe “raw scores” and explain their limitations.
raw scores simply the number of items scored in a specific manner often of limited use
to give raw scores more meaning, we need to transform them (i.e. scaled; derived; standard) scores
2) Define normreferenced and criterionreferenced score interpretations and explain their major characteristics.
normreferenced examinee’s performance is compared to a specific level of performance
most of tests psychologists use are normreferenced
criterionreferencedinterpretations are absolute
compared to an absolute standard
often used in educational settings
3) List and explain the important criteria for evaluating standardization data. representative
appropriate for application
current (i.e. Flynn Effect)
adequate size (bigger the sample, the better the applicability)
4) Describe the normal curve and explain its importance in interpreting test scores. 5) Describe the major types of standard scores.
zscores: mean of 0 and SD of 1
tscores: mean of 50 and SD of 10
IQs: mean of 100 and SD of 15
CEEB scores (SAT/GRE): mean of 500 and SD of 100
6) Convert standard scores (e.g., zscores, Tscores, etc.,) from one format to another. formula:
new standard score = x SS2 + SDSS2 x ( ) SDSS1
X = original standard score
x SS1 = mean of original standard score format
SDSS1 = standard deviation of original standard score format
x SS2 = mean new standard score format
SDSS2 = mean of new standard score format
7) Define normalized standard scores and describe the major types of normalized standard scores. Stanine Scores: mean of 5 and SD of 2
Wechsler scaled scores: mean of 10 and SD of 3
Normal Curve equivalents (NCE): mean of 50 and SD of 21.06
8) Define percentile rank and explain its interpretation.
percentile rank reflects the percentage of people scoring below a given point 9) Define grade (and age) equivalents and explain their limitations.
grade equivalents based on percentile ranks
subject to misinterpretation
age equivalents same limitations as grade equivalents
10) Describe some common applications of criterionreferenced score interpretations. percentage correct
i.e. score of 85% on classroom test
i.e. pass/fail on driver’s license exam
i.e. assigned an “A” to reflect superior work
11) Explain how tests can be developed that produce both normreferenced and criterionreferenced interpretations.
“For example, it would be possible to interpret a student’s test performance as ‘by correctly answering 75% of the multiplication problems (criterion), the student scored better than 60% of the students in the class (norm).’”
12) Describe Item Response Theory and the properties of IRT or Raschtype scores. IRT scores are similar to traditional raw scores
they can be transformed to norm or criterionreferenced scores
but they are interval level scores, and they have stable standard deviations across age groups
go by different names:
Rasch or IRTscores
Change Sensitive Scores (CSS)
W Scores (WJIII)
13) Give an example of a qualitative score description and explain its purpose. Qualitative Descriptions of test scores
helps communicate test results in an accurate and consistent manner i.e. StanfordBinet Intelligence Scale