When staff members at PAR are developing a new test, several rounds of data are collected in order to be sure that the test is measuring what it has intended to measure and that it represents the appropriate populations accurately. Data collection occurs all across the U.S. to help us gather that information. Multiple stages of data collection are crucial to test development. Learn more about the different stages of data collection and what is entailed in each step.
The pilot stage of data collection is when preliminary data is gathered on a proposed measure with a small sample. The goal of pilot data collection is often to make decisions about item selection, and to determine any aspects of the test that may need alteration prior to standardization. Data collectors provide valuable feedback to PAR staff during this stage regarding the administration of the test and ways it can be improved.
Standardization involves gathering data using the proposed measure with a larger, representative sample to create norms used by clinicians to score and interpret results upon the test’s publication. PAR uses Census-based norming to ensure our samples are proportionally representative of the demographics of the United States. Each examinee is evaluated for age/grade, sex, race/ethnic group, and participant’s or parent’s educational attainment in addition to their responses to the assessment. PAR’s data collection staff monitor the data closely to ensure each geographic region of the United States is represented. The standardization stage of a project provides additional data collection opportunities to gather reliability data through interrater and test–retest cases, as well as validity data using concurrent measures.
Specific clinical groups may be recruited to serve as clinical comparison samples in data collection.. These clinical cases may require additional documentation from the data collector. The clinical populations recruited vary depending on the construct the test intends to measure.
Interested in becoming a data collector for an upcoming project? Have access to a specific clinical group that needs more research? Learn more about how you can PARtner with PAR.
Want to learn more about data collection and standardization? PAR staff members recently addressed this topic on The Testing Psychologist podcast. Tune in here.