TitleImpact of Test Design, Item Quality, and Item Bank Size on the Psychometric Properties of Computer-Based Credentialing Examinations
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2004
AuthorsXing, D, Hambleton, RK
JournalEducational and Psychological Measurement

Computer-based testing by credentialing agencies has become common; however, selecting a test design is difficult because several good ones are available—parallel forms, computer adaptive (CAT), and multistage (MST). In this study, three computerbased test designs under some common examination conditions were investigated. Item bank size and item quality had a practically significant impact on decision consistency and accuracy. Even in nearly ideal situations, the choice of test design was not a factor in the results. Two conclusions follow from the findings: (a) More time and resources should be committed to expanding the size and quality of item banks, and (b) designs that individualize an exam administration such as MST and CAT may not be helpful when the primary purpose of the examination is to make pass-fail decisions and conditions are present for using parallel forms with a target information function that can be centered on the passing score.