Recommendations for Conducting Differential Item Functioning (DIF) Analyses for Students With Disabilities Based on Previous DIF Studies

Buzick, Heather; Stone, Elizabeth
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differential item functioning, students with disabilities


The purpose of this study is to help ensure that strategies for differential item functioning (DIF) detection for students with disabilities are appropriate and lead to meaningful results. We surveyed existing DIF studies for students with disabilities and describe them in terms of study design, statistical approach, sample characteristics, and DIF results. Based on descriptive and graphical summaries of previous DIF studies, we make recommendations for future studies of DIF for students with disabilities.

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