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ERIC Number: EJ971996
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-May
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 52
ISSN: ISSN-1058-0360
Model Choice and Sample Size in Item Response Theory Analysis of Aphasia Tests
Hula, William D.; Fergadiotis, Gerasimos; Martin, Nadine
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, v21 n2 pS38-S50 May 2012
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to identify the most appropriate item response theory (IRT) measurement model for aphasia tests requiring 2-choice responses and to determine whether small samples are adequate for estimating such models. Method: Pyramids and Palm Trees (Howard & Patterson, 1992) test data that had been collected from individuals with aphasia were analyzed, and the resulting item and person estimates were used to develop simulated test data for 3 sample size conditions. The simulated data were analyzed using a standard 1-parameter logistic (1-PL) model and 3 models that accounted for the influence of guessing: augmented 1-PL and 2-PL models and a 3-PL model. The model estimates obtained from the simulated data were compared to their known true values. Results: With small and medium sample sizes, an augmented 1-PL model was the most accurate at recovering the known item and person parameters; however, no model performed well at any sample size. Follow-up simulations confirmed that the large influence of guessing and the extreme easiness of the items contributed substantially to the poor estimation of item difficulty and person ability. Conclusion: Incorporating the assumption of guessing into IRT models improves parameter estimation accuracy, even for small samples. However, caution should be exercised in interpreting scores obtained from easy 2-choice tests, regardless of whether IRT modeling or percentage correct scoring is used. (Contains 7 tables and 3 figures.)
American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). 10801 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD 20852. Tel: 800-638-8255; Fax: 301-571-0457; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A