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Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research

University of Nebraska - Lincoln

1995

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Full-Text Articles in Education

Dedication- Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, And Practices, James C. Impara Jul 1995

Dedication- Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, And Practices, James C. Impara

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

The impetus for this book and for my involvement in it are due principally to the efforts of three people: Jimmie Fortune, Howard Stoker, and Barbara Plake. Jimmie edited (and contributed to) an earlier book devoted to licensure testing (Fortune, J. C., & Associates, 1985, Understanding Testing in Occupational Licensing, Jossey Bass: San Francisco.). Shortly after that book was published he told me that he felt some important topics had not been included and that another book was needed. He encouraged me on several occasions to edit a new book that picked up where his left off and expand it to ...


Preface- Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, And Practices, James C. Impara Jul 1995

Preface- Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, And Practices, James C. Impara

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

This book represents a unique effort for the Buros Institute of Mental Measurements and the Buros-Nebraska Series on Measurement and Testing. All of the previous books in this series have been associated with a symposium sponsored by the Buros Institute of Mental Measurements and the University of Nebraska. This book is "free standing" in that it is an independent effort intended to fulfill a perceived need for a book, but without preceding the book with a symposium. There are few books devoted solely to the topic of licensure testing, but each state and the federal government is involved in this ...


Title And Contents- Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, And Practices, James C. Impara, Linda L. Murphy Jan 1995

Title And Contents- Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, And Practices, James C. Impara, Linda L. Murphy

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, And Practices

Contents

Dedication

Preface

SECTION ONE: Purposes and Policy Issues

1. What is Licensure?
Kara Schmitt

2. Legal and Professional Bases for Licensure Testing
William A. Mehrens

3. Policy Issues with Psychometric Implications
Michael Rosenfeld, Richard J. Tannenbaum, and Scott Wesley

SECTION TWO: Procedures

Overview of the Licensure Testing Process
James C. Impara

4. Practice Analysis: Building the Foundation for Validity
Joan Knapp and Lenora Knapp

5. Test Development: Systematic Item Writing and Test Construction
Anthony LaDuca, Steven Downing, and Thomas Henzel

6. Developing and Using Clinical Examinations
Jimmie Fortune and Ted Cromack

7. Basic ...


Section One: Purposes And Policy Issues Jan 1995

Section One: Purposes And Policy Issues

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

No Content


1. What Is Licensure, Kara Schmitt Jan 1995

1. What Is Licensure, Kara Schmitt

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

When most individuals hear the terms license and licensure, their first reaction is that these are easily understood and relatively simple words. Everyone knows what these terms mean. Or do they?

What is licensure? It is a multifaceted, complex governmental system of regulation with the stated purpose being public protection. According to Webster's dictionary (Guralnik, 1976), a license is defined as "a formal permission to do something: esp., authorization by law to do some specified thing (license to marry, practice medicine, hunt, etc.)." The term Licensure is then defined to mean "the act or practice of granting licenses, as ...


2. Legal And Professional Bases For Licensure Testing, William A. Mehrens Jan 1995

2. Legal And Professional Bases For Licensure Testing, William A. Mehrens

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

In this chapter the author presents the legal setting for licensure testing, I discusses the role of various professional standards and codes (i.e., the EEOC Uniform Guidelines, 1978, and the AERA/APA/NCME Standards, 1985), presents some of the pertinent rulings from several court decisions, and makes inferences about future changes in professional standards and their potential impact on licensure test development.

There necessarily is some minor overlap with the material in this chapter and some other chapters in this book. There is a brief discussion of the differences between licensure, certification. and employment testing and how those differences ...


3. Policy Issues With Psychometric Implications, Michael Rosenfeld, Richard F. J. Tannenbaum, Scott Wesley Jan 1995

3. Policy Issues With Psychometric Implications, Michael Rosenfeld, Richard F. J. Tannenbaum, Scott Wesley

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

Testing candidates with disabilities, testing repeaters, and coaching involve issues of fairness, the validity of the inferences made from test scores, and protection of the public. Licensing boards must develop policies to deal with each of these issues. It is interesting to note that although all three are of concern to licensing agencies, little of the research on these topics has been conducted in licensure settings. This chapter discusses the results of research conducted on each topic, considers the psychometric implications for policy of each, and suggests steps licensing boards can take when formulating policy.

TESTING CANDIDATES WITH DISABILITIES IN ...


Section Two: Overview Of The Procedures For Developing A Licensure Examination, James C. Impara Jan 1995

Section Two: Overview Of The Procedures For Developing A Licensure Examination, James C. Impara

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

There are a variety of strategies that may be employed in the development of a licensure examination. The following list of activities illustrates typical procedures. Depending on the needs and conditions of the particular occupation, certain variations in specific activities may take place or changes in the sequence may be appropriate. In addition to the procedures listed, many decisions will be made that may add activities. For example, the decision to use a computerized item bank or to enter into a computerized adaptive testing format will require procedures in addition to those described briefly below.

1. Conducting a job (or ...


4. Practice Analysis: Building The Foundation For Validity, Joan E. Knapp, Lenora G. Knapp Jan 1995

4. Practice Analysis: Building The Foundation For Validity, Joan E. Knapp, Lenora G. Knapp

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

INTRODUCTION

A review of the literature associated with job analysis reveals two extremes of opinion as represented by the following provocative quotes:

Historically job analysis has been a relatively soporific area of industrial and organizational psychology, characterized by neither heated controversy nor prominent visibility in the research literature. (Harvey, 1991, p. 71)

Validation was once a priestly mystery, a ritual behind the scenes with the professional elite as witness and judge. Today it is a public spectacle combining the attraction of chess and mud wrestling. (Cronbach, 1988, p. 3)

Both our evaluation of practice analysis research and our professional experience ...


5. Systematic Item Writing And Test Construction, Anthony Laduca, Steven M. Downing, Thomas R. Henzel Jan 1995

5. Systematic Item Writing And Test Construction, Anthony Laduca, Steven M. Downing, Thomas R. Henzel

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

Standardized objective testing remains the most popular mode of licensure testing. Even where other types of tests are incorporated, it is often the case that they are provided as complimentary to standardized, multiple-choice (MC) tests. Moreover, scoring theories and standard-setting procedures have been developed over the years in the context of standardized MC testing. At the same time, critics have pointed to limitations of contemporary MC testing practices, including lack of fidelity to real-life challenges and emphasis on recall of factual minutiae. In our view, testing professionals should make conscientious attempts to modify test development procedures so as to address ...


7. Basic Psychometric Issues In Licensure Testing, Howard W. Stoker, James C. Impara Jan 1995

7. Basic Psychometric Issues In Licensure Testing, Howard W. Stoker, James C. Impara

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

INTRODUCTION

The number of people in the United States who carry some responsibility for the writing of examination questions and the construction of tests is unknown. In the Preface to The Construction and Use of Achievement Examinations, published by the American Council on Education in 1936, the authors indicated that the number probably exceeded a million. That number has certainly grown in the past 60 years. Questions are posed to students by teachers at all levels of education; the Armed Forces have people whose job it is to construct tests which are used in the promotion of personnel; over 1 ...


8. Item Banking, Betty A. Bergstrom, Richard C. Gershon Jan 1995

8. Item Banking, Betty A. Bergstrom, Richard C. Gershon

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

Item banks developed by licensure agencies range from a collection of items stored on index cards to highly sophisticated electronic databases. Regardless of the storage mechanism, most banks contain items that have been organized and referenced according to procedures established by the licensure agency. This chapter outlines useful practices for building and maintaining a computerized item bank. We address storage of item text, graphics, and statistical history. We deal with the creation of paper-and-pencil and computerized tests from an item bank and the use of Item Response Theory (lRT) to calibrate and equate item banks. New directions in item banking ...


9. Differential Item Functioning In Licensure Tests, Barbara S. Plake Jan 1995

9. Differential Item Functioning In Licensure Tests, Barbara S. Plake

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

When test scores are used to make important decisions, as is typically the case with licensure tests, the validity of test score interpretations is extremely critical. The validity of the decision (e.g., pass or fail the licensure examination) relies heavily on the validity of the test score that is used in making the licensure decision. So, although validity is always a critical component in test score interpretation, it has increased importance when the score is used in high-stakes decision situations such as licensure testing.

Issues in validity for licensure tests have been addressed in Chapter 4 of this volume ...


10. Establishing Passing Standards, Craig N. Mills Jan 1995

10. Establishing Passing Standards, Craig N. Mills

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

INTRODUCTION

When tests are used to determine eligibility for a license, a passing standard or cut score must be established that divides the test scores into two categories: eligible for license or not. Standard setting has been widely researched and there are many reviews available (see, for example, Jaeger, 1989; Mills & Melican, 1988; Berk, 1986; Hambleton, 1980; Hambleton & Eignor, 1980; and Shepard, 1980a, 1980b), yet there is limited practical advice available for conducting standard setting studies and establishing standards. The one available resource (Livingston & Zieky, 1982) is somewhat dated. The purpose of this chapter is to provide a practical discussion of the entire standard ...


11. Equating, Judy A. Shea, John J. Norcini Jan 1995

11. Equating, Judy A. Shea, John J. Norcini

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

INTRODUCTION

Testing programs nearly always need examinations that measure the same thing, but are composed of different questions (i .e., alternate forms of the same test). When different questions are used, however, there is no assurance that scores on the forms are equivalent; different sets of items might be easier or harder and, therefore, produce higher or lower scores. Equating is used to overcome this problem. Simply stated, it is the design and statistical procedure that permits scores on one form of a test to be comparable to scores on an alternate form.

A hypothetical example will help explain why ...


Section Three Emerging Practices Jan 1995

Section Three Emerging Practices

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

No abstract provided.


12. Computerized Testing In Licensure, C. David Vale Jan 1995

12. Computerized Testing In Licensure, C. David Vale

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

Computerized testing has come out of the laboratory and into the field. By rough estimates, over a million licensure and certification examinations are currently given by computer each year, and the number is rising. Computerized testing is not appropriate for every application, however. Computerized tests always result in significantly greater direct costs than paper-and-pencil tests. To justify their use, a computerized test must result in a net dollar saving. This means that something in the process of computerization must offer a cost reduction that more than offsets the direct cost of computerization. The purpose of this chapter is to identify ...


13. Future Psychometric Practices In Licensure Testing, Steven S. Nettles Jan 1995

13. Future Psychometric Practices In Licensure Testing, Steven S. Nettles

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

New technologies continue to emerge each year, and influence testing practices. In particular, in the last 10 years the personal computer has evolved from a curious and minimally useful tool to an indispensable partner in many certification and licensure testing programs. It is involved in every aspect- including candidate scheduling, test assembly, test administration, test scoring and analysis, and score reporting. Initially, it is used to determine the content to be included in the job analysis instrument, and later, to analyze the returned surveys. After the job analysis is completed and test specifications prepared, it can be used to bank ...


Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, And Practices [Complete Work], James C. Impara, Linda L. Murphy Jan 1995

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, And Practices [Complete Work], James C. Impara, Linda L. Murphy

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices

Licensure Testing: Purposes, Procedures, and Practices (374 pages)

Copyright © 1995 by Buros Institute of Mental Measurements All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form, by photostat, microfilm, retrieval system, or any other means, without the prior written permission of the publisher.

Buros Institute of Mental Measurements 135 Bancroft Hall University of Nebraska-Lincoln Lincoln, NE 68588-0348

The paper used in this publication meets the minimum requirements of American National Standard for Information Sciences-Permanence of Paper for Printed Library Materials, ANSI Z39.48-1984.


Title And Contents- Family Assessment, Jane Close Conoley, Linda L. Murphy, Elaine Buterick Werth Jan 1995

Title And Contents- Family Assessment, Jane Close Conoley, Linda L. Murphy, Elaine Buterick Werth

Family Assessment

Family Assessment

Content

Preface

SECTION ONE: Family Assessment: History, Theory, and Applications

Measurement Beyond the Individual
Charles F. Halverson

Families as the Focus of Assessment: Theoretical and Practical Issues
Cindy I. Carlson

SECTION TWO: Investigation of Critical Elements of Family Dynamics

Assessing Family Health and Distress: An Intergenerational-Systemic Perspective
James H. Bray

Multicultural Family Assessment
Jane Close Conoley and Lorrie E. Bryant

Sibling Relationships
Michelle C. Schicke

Assessing Marital Quality in Longitudinal and Life Course Studies
David R. Johnson

SECTION THREE: Assessment of Special Challenges Faced by Families

Issues in Measuring the Effects of Divorce on Children
Paul R. Amato ...


Preface- Family Assessment, Jane Close Conoley Jan 1995

Preface- Family Assessment, Jane Close Conoley

Family Assessment

Assessing families suggests both interesting measurement issues and significant clinical applications. This volume is a collection of important papers to explore the topic in some depth.

Some of these papers were first given at the Buros-Nebraska Symposium on Testing and Measurement. Others have been written especially for this volume. All are outstanding examples of scholarship in this very thorny area of psychological measurement beyond the individual. We commissioned papers that examined the history of measurement with families and to cover family issues that are of particular interest to both clinicians and researchers.

The book is divided in three sections. Drs ...


Section One: Family Assessment: History, Theory, And Applications Jan 1995

Section One: Family Assessment: History, Theory, And Applications

Family Assessment

In this section a more unified research effort in family assessment is advocated by Dr. Halverson. He urges the constructs most important in the study of families be identified by shifting from the study of isolated components of the family to a more global view of family functioning. There is a lack of attention to the nomological net of constructs. Multi-trait and multi-method analysis is recommended to produce useful information regarding the family.

Dr. Carlson continues this critique by highlighting the influential role of theory in the development and use of family assessment measures and methods. Carlson traces the development ...


1. Measurement Beyond The Individual, Charles F. Halverson Jan 1995

1. Measurement Beyond The Individual, Charles F. Halverson

Family Assessment

This chapter has several goals. First, I will briefly review the history of measurement as it applies to family assessment. This history has been recounted by many and is available in many recent publications, so I shall be fairly brief. Second, I will discuss family measurement in terms of important issues still facing the family measurement field-issues that are not, in my opinion, being well addressed at this time. And finally, I will attempt to weave these various threads into some speculations about the future directions that family measurement might (or maybe needs) to take.

I will confine this discussion ...


2. Families As The Focus Of Assessment: Theoretical And Practical Issues, Cindy I. Carlson Jan 1995

2. Families As The Focus Of Assessment: Theoretical And Practical Issues, Cindy I. Carlson

Family Assessment

The role of early and concurrent family relationships in the etiology of individual development and psychopathology has received increased attention in both research and practice within psychology in recent decades. Although the importance of family relationships in shaping personality has always been central in psychology, it was assumed with psychoanalytic theory that these forces were internalized within the individual such that intrapsychic dynamics were the dominant forces controlling behavior. Consistent with the premises of the dynamic model, the individual was the focus of assessment, treatment, and research within the discipline of psychology. Several converging developments in the 1950s led clinicians ...


Section Two Investigation Of Critical Elements Of Family Dynamics Jan 1995

Section Two Investigation Of Critical Elements Of Family Dynamics

Family Assessment

This section presents information on the assessment of family constructs that are of interest to most families. Dr. James Bray tackles an area of family issues in which some confusion reigns. Bray addresses the dilemma of the multiple processes and constructs involved with family health with definitions of the most salient features of family functioning. These include communication, conflict, problem solving, emotional bonding, affect, roles, differentiation and individuation, triangulation, intimacy, personal authority in the family system, and family stress. Bray identifies valid and reliable self-report measures available to assess each construct and future research directions for the study of family ...


3. Assessing Family Health And Distress: An Intergenerational-Systemic Perspective, James H. Bray Jan 1995

3. Assessing Family Health And Distress: An Intergenerational-Systemic Perspective, James H. Bray

Family Assessment

In the past several decades there has been a proliferation of interest and development of family systems theories. A unique aspect of a systems perspective is that human problems develop in and because of social interactions usually within the family, rather than solely from some internal process within an individual. A second innovation is the view that human behavior always occurs in a context, and that understanding the context is essential for understanding problem development and resolution. The empirical evaluation and validation of these perspectives has lagged behind theoretical and therapeutic developments. Further, research in this area has been hampered ...


4. Multicultural Family Assessment, Jane Close Conoley, Lorrie E. Bryant Jan 1995

4. Multicultural Family Assessment, Jane Close Conoley, Lorrie E. Bryant

Family Assessment

Assessing individuals who are members of minority or recent immigrant groups creates special and critical challenges for psychologists committed to equitable practices (Dana, 1993). As previous chapters in this volume have shown, the goal of accomplishing valid family assessments is daunting in its own right. Culturally sensitive procedures of family evaluation are, perhaps, even more difficult to conceptualize and administer.

This chapter will examine several issues relevant to expertise in assessing families whose cultural framework differs from the majority of the u.s. population. The topics to be covered include:

1. What is cultural sensitivity?
2. What are the important ...


5. Sibling Relationships, Michelle C. Schicke Jan 1995

5. Sibling Relationships, Michelle C. Schicke

Family Assessment

INTRODUCTION

The nature of sibling relationships has been given considerable empirical attention. Research has focused on describing the nature of sibling interaction and roles siblings play in each others' lives, as well as on attempting to support the contention that the sibling relationship can impact children's psychosocial development (Dunn, 1983). The latter purpose has been influenced by two areas: behavior genetics and family systems theory.

Behavior geneticists have proposed that although siblings have roughly half their segregating genes in common, environmental influences operate in a way that makes siblings no more alike than two children chosen at random from ...


Section Three: Assessment Of Special Challenges Faced By Families Jan 1995

Section Three: Assessment Of Special Challenges Faced By Families

Family Assessment

The previous two sections of the volume described family assessment related to the usual issues faced by families. In this final section, the papers are concerned with assessment approaches with families facing particular challenges. Chapters concerning divorce, aggressive children, and the effects of a child with a disability on family and child functioning comprise the third section.

Dr. Paul Amato notes that empirical investigation into the impact of divorce on children lacks the theoretical base that would provide a solid foundation for future research. Amato suggest that current research includes too many dependent variables which results in weak outcomes. Studies ...


7. Issues In Measuring The Effects Of Divorce On Children, Paul R. Amato Jan 1995

7. Issues In Measuring The Effects Of Divorce On Children, Paul R. Amato

Family Assessment

The divorce rate in the United States has been increasing steadily for the last century, from 7% of first marriages in 1880 to over 50% in recent decades (Weed, 1980). Even though the divorce rate leveled off in the 1980s, current estimates indicate that nearly two-thirds (64%) of all first marriages will end in divorce or permanent separation (Martin & Bumpass, 1989). Currently, more than one million children experience parental divorce every year in this country (U.S. Bureau of the Census, 1989, p. 92). This increase in the likelihood of marital disruption, and the large number of children involved, has generated public concern about the consequences of divorce for children's well being.

People who hold traditional attitudes believe that a two-parent family is necessary to ensure children's successful socialization and development. Consequently, traditionalists see any departure from the two-parent family as necessarily being problematic. Several observers have criticized this perspective, referred to as a "family deficit model," as being simplistic (Demo, 1992; Marotz-Baden, Adams, Buech, Mlmro, & Munro, 1979). They point out that alternative family forms, such as single-parent families, can serve as successful environments for children's development. In recent years, ideological debates over divorce and single-parent families have appeared in both the popular press and academic journals (see Etzioni, 1992, for a discussion).

Nevertheless, in spite of the debate at the ideological level, good reasons exist for assuming that parental divorce has the potential to create problems for many children.

First, both mothers and fathers are important resources for children. Research has consistently shown that a high level of parental support and a moderate level of parental control and supervision promote children's development and well-being (Maccoby & Martin, 1983; Rollins & Thomas, 1979). As such, the departure of one parentusually the father-from the household following marital dissolution represents the loss of a potentially important resource for children. Furthermore, for a period of time following divorce, custodial mothers tend to be less affectionate toward their children and punish them more severely and less consistently than do married mothers (Hetherington, Cox, & Cox, 1982). Divorce also exposes children to high levels of interparental conflict-both prior to and following marital disruption. Not surprisingly, research shows that interparental conflict is associated with deficits in children's well-being, regardless of family type (Emery, 1982). In addition, children living with custodial mothers are likely to experience economic hardship (Weitzman, 1985). Finally, divorce initiates a series of life changes (such as moving and changing schools) that may be stressful to children. Any of these factors- parental loss, poor quality parenting, interparental conflict, economic hardship, and stressful life changes-might place children of divorce at increased risk for a variety of problems.

During the last three decades, psychologists, sociologists, and other social scientists have carried out a large number of studies dealing with the impact of divorce on children. Several scholars have reviewed this literature in a qualitative fashion (e.g., Emery, 1988; Demo & Acock, 1988). More recently, Bruce Keith and I carried out a meta-analysis of 92 of these studies (Amato & Keith, 1991a). Our meta-analysis showed that children of divorce, compared with children in continuously intact two-parent families ...