1st Edition

User-Centered Assessment Design An Integrated Methodology for Diverse Populations

By Madhabi Chatterji Copyright 2024

    How can assessment instruments be designed or selected to best serve the needs of intended users, taking into account their interests, capacities, and limitations? Informed by a socioecological perspective, this timely, state-of-the-art reference and text presents an integrated, user-centered process model for developing assessments guided by user contexts. Madhabi Chatterji provides foundational principles and procedures for designing multi-item tests; behavior-based, product-based, and portfolio-based assessments; and self-report instruments. She demonstrates how to integrate qualitative and quantitative methods to devise tools that meet the quality criteria of usefulness and usability alongside validity and reliability. The book features case study discussions; worked-through examples with diverse, global populations; and sample instruments from a variety of disciplines (education, psychology, health care, and others). Chapter overviews and objectives are tied to within-chapter Recaps and Reflection Breaks to further understanding and class discussion.

    I. Foundations
    1. Foundational Concepts in Assessment Design
    1.1 Chapter Overview
    1.2 Assessments: Old and Emerging Traditions, a Starting Definition, and Some Distinctions
    1.3 Viewpoints on Assessment, Measurement, Testing, and Evaluation
    1.4 Role of Assessment in Scientific, Professional, and Practical Endeavors
    1.5 Evaluating the Quality of Assessments and Construct Measures: Validity, Reliability, and Utility
    1.6 Integrating Assessment Design, Validation, and Use: A User-Centered Process
    1.7 Summary
    2. Why Assess?: Measure-Based Inferences, Uses, Users, and Consequences
    2.1 Chapter Overview
    2.2 Back to the Future: Early Drivers, Milestones, and Consequences of Assessment Use
    2.3 Modern Drivers and Consequences of Assessment Uses in Education
    2.4 Modern Drivers and Consequences of Assessment Uses in Psychology, Health, Business, and Other Fields
    2.5 Applying User-Centered Principles to Improve Practices
    2.6 Summary
    3. Whom to Assess? and How?: Specifying the Population and the Assessment Operations
    3.1 Chapter Overview
    3.2 Why Population Characteristics and the Socioecological Contexts of Assessments Matter
    3.3 What Is Measurement Bias?: Case Studies and Hypothetical Illustrations
    3.4 Selecting Assessment Operations for Diverse Populations and Multidisciplinary Constructs
    3.5 Steps and Actions: Specifying Whom to Assess? and How? with the Process Model
    3.6 Summary
    II. Assessment Design
    4. What to Assess?: Specifying the Domains for Constructs
    4.1 Chapter Overview
    4.2 Domain Sampling and Domain Specification: Functional Theory and Applied Illustrations
    4.3 Construct Types, Domain Conceptualizations, and Structures
    4.4 Domain Specification as a Part of the Process Model: Steps, Techniques, Guidelines, and Conventions
    4.5 Content-Validating Specified Domains
    4.6. Summary
    5. Designing Assessments with Structured and Constructed-Response Items
    5.1 Chapter Overview
    5.2 Why the Mechanics of Item Construction Matter
    5.3 Cognitive Constructs Measured Best with Structured- or Constructed-Response Items
    5.4 Writing Structured-Response Items: Principles, Guidelines, and Applied Examples
    5.5 Guidelines for Designing Constructed-Response and Essay Tasks
    5.6. Instrument Assembly
    5.7 An Application with the Process Model: A Case Study of Cognitively Based Item and Assessment Design to Foster Learning in Long Division
    5.8 Summary
    6. Designing Behavior-Based, Product-Based, and Portfolio-Based Assessments
    6.1 Chapter Overview
    6.2 Behavior-, Product-, and Portfolio-Based Assessments: Definitions, Examples, and Origins
    6.3 Advantages of the Performance Assessment Format
    6.4 Disadvantages of Performance Assessments: Human Vulnerabilities, Errors, and Biases
    6.5 Three Case Studies: Applying the Process Model to Design and Validate Performance Assessments
    6.6 Summary
    7. Designing Survey-Based and Interview-Based Assessment Tools
    7.1 Chapter Overview
    7.2 Self-Report Instruments: Their Defining Properties and Common Applications
    7.3 Historical Origins of Questionnaires and Attitude Surveys
    7.4 Measurement Issues with the Self-Report Modality
    7.5 General Design Guidelines for Self-Report Instruments
    7.6 Ten More Guidelines for Writing Closed-Ended Survey Items
    7.7 A Case Study: Applying the Process Model to Design Two Complementary Self-Report Tools
    7.8 Summary
    III. Validation and Use of Assessments
    8. Analyzing Data from Assessments: A Statistics Refresher
    8.1 Chapter Overview
    8.2 Preparing for Data Analysis
    8.3 Organizing the Data
    8.4 Measures of Central Tendency
    8.5 Measures of Variability
    8.6 Graphical Displays of Data
    8.7 The Standard Normal Distribution and Its Applications
    8.8 Correlation Coefficients and Their Applications
    8.9 Related Statistical Techniques
    8.10 Summary
    9. Improving the Inferential Utility of Assessment Results: Methods and Limitations
    9.1 Chapter Overview
    9.2 Frames of Reference and Derived Scores
    9.3 Using Norms as the Frame of Reference
    9.4 Using Criterion Scores or Standards as the Frame of Reference
    9.5 Using Self as the Frame of Reference
    9.6 Composite Scores
    9.7 Grouped Scores, Equated Scales, and Linked Tests
    9.8 Summary
    10. A Unified Approach to Construct Validity and Validation: Theory to Evidence
    10.1 Chapter Overview
    10.2 Construct Validity: An Evolving Concept
    10.3 Theoretical Foundations of the Unitarian View of Validation
    10.4 Main Clusters and Types of Validity Evidence
    10.5 Random Errors of Measurement and Types of Reliability Evidence
    10.6 Utility of Measures, Assessments, and Assessment Systems
    10.7 Unified Validation Plans
    10.8 Chapter Summary
    11. Empirical Methods of Validation
    11.1 Chapter Overview
    11.2 Planning Empirical Validation Studies
    11.3 Evaluating Item Performance
    11.4 Examining Fairness and Measurement Bias
    11.5 Gathering Evidence of Content-Based Validity
    11.6 Validating Response Processes: The Cognitive Interview
    11.7 Gathering Correlational Evidence of Validity
    11.8 Empirical Estimation of Reliability
    11.9 Methods to Examine Utility
    11.10 Evaluating the Evidence: The PSQI Case Revisited
    11.11 Summary
    12. User-Centered Assessment Design: Revisiting the Principles, Extended Applications, Comparisons, and Conclusions
    12.1 Chapter Overview
    12.2 Applying the Principles Undergirding the Process Model: A Summary by Section
    12.3. A User-Centered Design Process: Comparing the Old with the New
    12.4 Extended Applications of the Process Model
    12.5 The Process Model Compared to Existing Models of Assessment Design
    12.6 Connecting the Process Model with the 2014 Standards
    12.7 Summary
    Author Index
    Subject Index
    About the Author


    Madhabi Chatterji, PhD, is Professor Emerita of Measurement, Evaluation, and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, where she founded and directs the Assessment and Evaluation Research Initiative (AERI). AERI is dedicated to promoting meaningful use of assessment and evaluation information to improve equity and the quality of practices and policies in education, psychology, and the health professions. An award-winning, internationally recognized methodologist and educationist, Dr. Chatterji has taught and mentored numerous doctoral students and postdoctoral researchers over her 30-plus-year career. She is author or editor of more than 100 publications and is a Fellow of the National Education Policy Center. A public intellectual, Dr. Chatterji has spoken out frequently on the limitations of large-scale tests and the adverse social consequences of misused high-stakes educational assessments. Her longstanding scholarly interests lie in instrument design, validation, validity, and test use issues; improving program and policy evaluation designs to support evidence-based practices; and closing learning gaps with proximal diagnostic assessments.

    "This text serves as a consolidated resource for technical and practical knowledge regarding assessment design. Excitingly, the author centers issues of score use and consequences in framing the relevance and implications of assessment use. The way Chatterji does a deep dive on each example and then summarizes the key steps will be very helpful to my students."--Robyn Thomas Pitts, PhD, Morgridge College of Education, University of Denver

    "This well-constructed text will be useful for graduate-level courses in testing and measurement. It outlines basic concepts of test construction quite well and presents many figures and applications to make it easier to understand the material."--Matthew K. Burns, PhD, Fein Professor of Special Education, University of Florida

    "Chatterji's process model integrates the 'why,' 'who,' 'what,' and 'how-to' of effective assessment This book provides practitioners with a conceptual framework and relevant procedures for conceptualizing and developing carefully targeted measures and establishing their technical adequacy."--Paul Yovanoff, PhD, Simmons School of Education and Human Development (Emeritus), Southern Methodist University

    "This book is a 'must have' for those of us in the assessment world. It covers all the basic information that is needed for high-quality assessment development, administration, and analysis. I recommend this book for district- and state-level education decision makers and anyone who provides professional development to program specialists and classroom teachers."--Beverly Fitzpatrick, PhD, School of Pharmacy and School of Education, Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada-