ERIC Number: ED247307
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Apr
Reference Count: 0
An Investigation of Two Procedures for Smoothing Test Norms.
Jones, Patricia B.; Sabers, Darrell L.
Several techniques have been developed for creating continuous smooth distributions of test norms. This paper describes two studies that explore the behavior of cubic splines in order to determine their appropriateness for use in test norming. The first study uses data from the Curriculum Referenced Tests of Mastery (CRTM) and employs two smoothing techniques in determining distributions of percentile ranks (PR). Method 1 calculated PR values from cumulative frequency counts of raw scores values and then smoothed them to create a continuous distribution. Method 2 smoothed the raw frequencies to create the continuous distribution. The second study was designed to generate a theoretical population, sample repeatedly from it, and smooth the results in a comparative study of the two procedures. Both studies showed that spline smoothing techniques are a convenient and economical procedure for analytically smoothing test score distributions and generally give good results. The second study found that, of the methods, method 2 produced better results and was more robust with regard to the choice of smoothing parameter. Both methods were easy, efficient and economical to use. Statistical tables of standard deviations and means are included. (EGS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Smoothing Methods; Spline Function
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (68th, New Orleans, LA, April 23-27, 1984).