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ERIC Number: EJ1109272
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Jun
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-2330-8516
Creating Vocabulary Item Types That Measure Students' Depth of Semantic Knowledge. Research Report. ETS RR-14-02
Deane, Paul; Lawless, René R.; Li, Chen; Sabatini, John; Bejar, Isaac I.; O'Reilly, Tenaha
ETS Research Report Series, Jun 2014
We expect that word knowledge accumulates gradually. This article draws on earlier approaches to assessing depth, but focuses on one dimension: richness of semantic knowledge. We present results from a study in which three distinct item types were developed at three levels of depth: knowledge of common usage patterns, knowledge of broad topical associations, and knowledge of specific conceptual relationships. We attempted to avoid common sources of variance across items (such as attractive distracters) and hypothesized that the item types that required greater depth of semantic knowledge would tend to show greater difficulty and discrimination after other sources of variance were accounted for. Our results, while still exploratory, support the conclusion that the item types measure different aspects of lexical knowledge, consistent with the hypothesis of increasing semantic depth.
Educational Testing Service. Rosedale Road, MS19-R Princeton, NJ 08541. Tel: 609-921-9000; Fax: 609-734-5410; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 7; Junior High Schools; Middle Schools; Elementary Education; Secondary Education; Grade 8
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Alabama; Arizona; Arkansas; California; Connecticut; Georgia; Idaho; Illinois; Indiana; Iowa; Kentucky; Nevada; Tennessee
Grant or Contract Numbers: R305A080647