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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences : Psychology

Postgraduate Course: Applied Psychometrics (PSYL11106)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThe course is a survey of topics related to psychological measurement as used in various real-world settings, psychometric theory and models, test construction, and the interpretation of results and test manuals. The course emphasizes the practical side of these topics, allowing those who complete the course to both construct some psychological assessment scales, present and interpret their key psychometric properties, and evaluate these properties when provided for other scales.
Course description This course surveys psychometrics and scale design. The focus is practical/applied. Topics covered may include:

1. Theories of measurement such as classical test theory, generalizability theory, and modern test theory.

2. Brief overview of the basics and applications of exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis to test construction, including a focus on scoring (e.g., by weighting constituents equally or using different weights, such as factor loadings).

3. Types of tests such as cognitive performance tests, personality, attitude, interest batteries, or mental health scales; self- and rater-reports, experimental tests including ┬┐implicit association tests┬┐; projective versus objective tests.

4. Knowledge of the properties of scales and their scores, particularly various forms of reliability and validity, and what they tell us about the usefulness of scales. A primary focus is on using this knowledge to understand test manuals and carefully interpret measurements. What makes a good item?

5. Nomological network as a tool for validating measurements.

6. Interpretation of test scores (comparison to norm group, typical transformations of scale scores).

7. Item performance/difficulty assessment for the revision and updating of tests.

8. Practical examples of scale development and use in different areas (e.g., workplace, psychiatric diagnostics, counselling, research).
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2022/23, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  40
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 10, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 10, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 176 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Report: Evaluate test using manual 30% (1000 Words)

Report: Scale Construction 70% (2000 words)
Feedback Students will receive verbal feedback during the practical sessions.

Students will receive feedback on first assessment in time for it to help them with the second.

Students will receive feedback on final assignment throughout the process, i.e., they will work on this in consultation with one of the people teaching the course.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Describe, evaluate, and communicate advantages and disadvantages of different types of test theory, and tests.
  2. Understand reliability (including different forms), validity, and other measures of the quality of a test and their implications for interpreting measurement results.
  3. Calculate and interpret meaningfully different forms of tests scores and communicate their meaning.
  4. Evaluate the quality of a test using a manual or paper that describes that test or by conducting relevant statistical analyses of test data; communicate this to others.
  5. Create a measurement scale and present its properties.
Reading List
Main textbook (available electronically at no cost via the University Library)

Modern Psychometrics: The Science of Psychological Assessment by Rust J, Kosinski M, and Stillwell D.

For more detail, articles, especially guides, related to some of the topics.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Skills:
Research and enquiry:
Problem solving in many professions, and especially those where assessment is used for various purpose. Knowing how to select a psychometrically good test, identify bad tests, and create tests is invaluable.

Designing/refining a measurement scale, including related analyses.

Understanding product (test) manuals.

Written/oral communication

The course will help students think and communicate. Often, tests and other products/services are chosen for no good reason Being able to describe and evaluate them tests and communicate their good and bad features is relevant in a lot of industries.
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Thomas Booth
Tel: (0131 6)50 8405
Course secretaryMs Pilar Rodriguez Couceiro
Tel: (0131 6)51 5002
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