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ERIC Number: EJ920197
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 3
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 5
ISSN: ISSN-1536-6367
"The Role of the Unit in Physics and Psychometrics" by Stephen Humphry--One Small Step for the Rasch Model, but Possibly One Giant Leap for Measurement in the Social Sciences
Salzberger, Thomas
Measurement: Interdisciplinary Research and Perspectives, v9 n1 p59-61 2011
Compared to traditional test theory, where person measures are typically referenced to the distribution of a population, item response theory allows for a much more meaningful interpretation of measures as they can be directly compared to item locations. However, Stephen Humphry shows that the crucial role of the unit of measurement has been carelessly handled in the social sciences. While, today, in the natural sciences, proper, and meaningful, measurement is inconceivable without establishing a universal unit first, measurement in the social sciences has curiously done without a standard magnitude of whatever has allegedly been quantified. Stephen Humphry shows that the obstacles to measurement in the social sciences, if they are different from those in the natural sciences, are not insurmountable. They are surely no excuse for dubious attempts at "pseudo-quantification." Despite the need for further research concerning, for example, the polytomous Rasch model or the relationship between the unit and precision, Humphry's work represents certainly more than incremental progress.
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:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A