ERIC Number: EJ812331
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Jan
Reference Count: 11
Lost in Translation? Meaning and Decision Making in Actual and Possible Worlds
Rupp, Andre A.
Measurement: Interdisciplinary Research and Perspectives, v6 n1-2 p117-123 Jan 2008
From different angles, Borsboom, Markus, and Michell present a careful analysis of the way that specialists reason with empirical data about latent characteristics of individuals. They jointly argue for a more precise and thoughtful use of the key terms and measurement procedures that are ubiquitously employed in disciplines concerned with measurement, in particular psychology. They all focus, at some level, on the meaning that can be ascribed to the latent variables that are utilized in measurement models. They specifically demonstrate how such meaning is dependent on the assumed relationship between the scale properties of the latent variables and the ontogenetic properties of the latent traits these are supposed to index. They remind readers how this relationship is specified within nomological networks that enable causal inference referenced to actual and possible worlds. All three papers clearly serve as engaging consciousness-raising devices for specialists across different disciplines that can help readers become more responsible designers of research, analysts of data structures, and, above all, communicators of the inferential limits of their research endeavors. In this commentary, the author attempts to struggle with the lines of reasoning in the three papers and to translate the nuanced arguments of all three authors into a single coarser narrative.
Descriptors: Individual Characteristics, Psychometrics, Thinking Skills, Item Response Theory, Models
Psychology Press. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site: http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A