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ERIC Number: ED462403
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001-Apr
Pages: 25
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
What Does a Verbal Test Measure? A New Approach to Understanding Sources of Item Difficulty.
Berk, Eric J. Vanden; Lohman, David F.; Cassata, Jennifer Coyne
Assessing the construct relevance of mental test results continues to present many challenges, and it has proven to be particularly difficult to assess the construct relevance of verbal items. This study was conducted to gain a better understanding of the conceptual sources of verbal item difficulty using a unique approach that integrates self-report information with item response theory (IRT) data. Sources of difficulty were examined for sentence completion items on a standardized multiple-choice test, the Cognitive Abilities Test (R. Thorndike and E. Hagen, 1993) as part of the development of a new edition of the test. Results from a sample of 35 college students indicate that while there is a unidimensional nature to sentence completion solutions, specific sources of verbal features that can be manipulated easily to generate items for students at different levels of ability remain difficult to identify. This has implications for the construction and manipulation of construct-relevant variance in verbal item pools. Limitations of this study, implications for future research, and the role of integrated self-report and IRT data are discussed. Two appendixes contain tables of factor analysis results. (Contains 3 tables and 16 references.) (Author/SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A