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Using Past Data to Enhance Small-Scale DIF Estimation: A Bayesian Approach DIF

Sinharay, Sandip; Dorans, Neil J.; Grant, Mary C.; Blew, Edwin O.; Knorr, Colleen M.
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Report
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Differential Item Functioning (DIF), Bayesian Analysis, Mantel Haenszel Technique, Statistical Analysis


Further, for any operational test, a huge volume of past data is available, and for any item appearing in a present test, there is a high chance that a number of similar items have appeared on past operational administrations of the test. Therefore, ideally, it will be possible to use that past information as a prior distribution in a Bayesian DIF analysis. This paper discusses how to perform such an analysis. The suggested Bayesian DIF analysis method is shown to be an improvement over the existing methods in a realistic simulation study.

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