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ERIC Number: EJ1096896
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Mar
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-1931-7913
Contemporary Test Validity in Theory and Practice: A Primer for Discipline-Based Education Researchers
Reeves, Todd D.; Marbach-Ad, Gili
CBE - Life Sciences Education, v15 n1 Research Methods 1 Mar 2016
Most discipline-based education researchers (DBERs) were formally trained in the methods of scientific disciplines such as biology, chemistry, and physics, rather than social science disciplines such as psychology and education. As a result, DBERs may have never taken specific courses in the social science research methodology--either quantitative or qualitative--on which their scholarship often relies so heavily. One particular aspect of (quantitative) social science research that differs markedly from disciplines such as biology and chemistry is the instrumentation used to quantify phenomena. In response, this "Research Methods" essay offers a contemporary social science perspective on test validity and the validation process. The instructional piece explores the concepts of test validity, the validation process, validity evidence, and key threats to validity. The essay also includes an in-depth example of a validity argument and validation approach for a test of student argument analysis. In addition to DBERs, this essay should benefit practitioners (e.g., lab directors, faculty members) in the development, evaluation, and/or selection of instruments for their work assessing students or evaluating pedagogical innovations.
American Society for Cell Biology. 8120 Woodmont Avenue Suite 750, Bethesda, MD 20814-2762. Tel: 301-347-9300; Fax: 301-347-9310; e-mail:; Website:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A