1st Edition

Practical Psychometrics A Guide for Test Users

By Benjamin J Lovett Copyright 2023

    This is the first practitioner-oriented guide to basic psychometrics--the science behind test construction and validation. It can be used as a course text or clinical reference for anyone who needs to select and administer diagnostic tests or review test score data obtained by others. Without assuming any mathematical background, the author describes the fundamentals of diagnostic testing, how to interpret score data, and how specific tests are used in school psychology, special education, counseling, and other contexts. Concepts such as reliability, validity, and fairness and test bias are explained in an accessible, conversational way. Detailed case examples illustrate the dos and don'ts of presenting test score data to clients, parents, and teachers in oral feedback and written reports.

    Pedagogical Features:
    *End-of-chapter exercises that emphasize application and understanding, with answers at the end of the book.
    *Key terms are bolded throughout and accessibly explained in the end-of-book glossary.
    *Resource appendix--annotated guide to articles and books on more advanced topics in psychometrics, assessment, and testing.

    1. Introduction to Testing
    - Four Testing Stories
    - A Preview of the Book
    - Basic Terms in Testing
    - Tests as Assessment Tools
    2. Statistical Concepts
    - Univariate Descriptive Statistics
    - Bivariate Descriptive Statistics: Correlation and Regression
    - Group Differences
    - Conclusions
    - Applied Exercises
    3. The Meaning of Test Scores
    - Norm-Referenced Scores
    - What’s Normal? What’s Not?
    - Issues in Norm-Referenced Score Interpretation
    - Conclusions
    - Applied Exercises
    4. Reliability
    - Defining Reliability
    - Evaluating a Test’s Reliability: Background
    - Practical Ways of Estimating Reliability
    - Interpreting and Applying Reliability Estimates
    - Reliability of Differences and Profiles
    - Item Response Theory
    - Conclusions
    - Applied Exercises
    5. Validity
    - Tests, Constructs, and Inferences
    - Types of Validity Evidence
    - Validity and Classification
    - Evaluating Validity Evidence
    - Conclusions
    - Applied Exercises
    6. Factor Analysis
    - EFA: A Few Motivating Examples
    - Reviewing EFA Data
    - Factor Analysis and Diagnostic Testing
    - Factor Analysis and Validity
    - Confirmatory Factor Analysis
    - Conclusions
    - Applied Exercises
    7. Bias and Fairness
    - The Problem of Group Differences
    - Test Bias and Psychometric Validity
    - Contrasting Bias with Other Problems
    - Fairness in Test Use
    - Conclusions
    - Applied Exercises
    8. Sharing Test Results
    - The Oral Feedback Session
    - The Written Report
    - Conclusions
    Appendix A. Resources for Further Study
    Appendix B. Answers for Applied Exercises
    About the Author


    Benjamin J. Lovett, PhD, is Associate Professor of Psychology and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, where he teaches courses in psychoeducational assessment, legal and ethical issues for school psychologists, and the history of psychology. Dr. Lovett has over 100 publications, focusing on the assessment of high-incidence disabilities, the provision of testing accommodations, and the nature and management of test anxiety. He also serves as a consultant to schools and testing agencies on disability and assessment issues.

    "This well-written text offers a concise, clinically relevant guide to using psychometrically based tests in psychology, social work, counseling, and related areas. The author’s voice is clear and approachable, almost like he is speaking with you. Discussion of bias and fairness is particularly well done, and will help students to deconstruct the many issues that are involved when using psychometric instruments. I was particularly impressed with the discussion of norming and multicultural issues, as this topic can be dissentious. The exercises at the end of each chapter are effective and thoughtful; the way they span multiple professional areas helps to make the volume applicable to students across various training programs."--J. Gayle Beck, PhD, Emerita Chair of Excellence, Department of Psychology, University of Memphis

    "It has been a struggle to find a resource that strikes the right balance of theory and applied practice to empower future practitioners with regard to test use, selection, and interpretation. Many of us have been clamoring for a resource like this for use in our master's-level programs! The presentation is incredibly accessible, and is anchored in a strong balance of practical, timely examples throughout."--Laura M. Spenceley, PhD, Dean, School of Education, State University of New York at Oswego

    "The case examples are really helpful and the writing style very accessible."--Matthew K. Burns, PhD, Department of Special Education, University of Missouri–Columbia

    "Across eight chapters, Practical Psychometricsoffers a concise introduction to key terms, concepts, and research methods associated with mental measurement. The book achieves its goals of being readable, intuitive, clinically relevant, and technically accurate. Lovett’s writing is crystal clear, and his examples are vivid. This book covers a lot of ground and is well designed for graduate programs in school psychology, behavior analysis, social work, and counseling."--Randy G. Floyd, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Psychology, University of Memphis-