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Test Scaling and Value-Added Measurement

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  • Dale Ballou

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    (Department of Leadership, Policy and Organizations, Peabody College, Vanderbilt University)

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    Abstract

    Conventional value-added assessment requires that achievement be reported on an interval scale. While many metrics do not have this property, application of item response theory (IRT) is said to produce interval scales. However, it is difficult to confirm that the requisite conditions are met. Even when they are, the properties of the data that make a test IRT scalable may not be the properties we seek to represent in an achievement scale, as shown by the lack of surface plausibility of many scales resulting from the application of IRT. An alternative, ordinal data analysis, is presented. It is shown that value-added estimates are sensitive to the choice of ordinal methods over conventional techniques. Value-added practitioners should ask themselves whether they are so confident of the metric properties of these scales that they are willing to attribute differences to the superiority of the latter. © 2009 American Education Finance Association

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by MIT Press in its journal Education Finance and Policy.

    Volume (Year): 4 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 4 (October)
    Pages: 351-383

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    Handle: RePEc:tpr:edfpol:v:4:y:2009:i:4:p:351-383

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    Web page: http://mitpress.mit.edu/journals/

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    Related research

    Keywords: value-added assessment; test scaling; item response theory;

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    Cited by:
    1. Cory Koedel & Mark Ehlert & Eric Parsons & Michael Podgursky, 2012. "Selecting Growth Measures for School and Teacher Evaluations," Working Papers 1210, Department of Economics, University of Missouri.
    2. Barrett, Nathan & Toma, Eugenia F., 2013. "Reward or punishment? Class size and teacher quality," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 41-52.
    3. Barlevy, Gadi & Neal, Derek, 2009. "Pay for Percentile," IZA Discussion Papers 4383, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Koedel Cory & Leatherman Rebecca & Parsons Eric, 2012. "Test Measurement Error and Inference from Value-Added Models," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 12(1), pages 1-37, November.
    5. Wiswall, Matthew, 2013. "The dynamics of teacher quality," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 61-78.

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