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Continuous Improvement of Existing Methods

A key goal of ETS's research in Statistics and Psychometrics is to develop, improve and apply statistical and psychometric methods and capabilities. This is done in support of current testing programs and future products and services. The goal is also to advance the science and practice of assessment, measurement, statistics and educational research in support of ETS's mission.

This research objective supports projects that extend and/or innovate on current statistical and psychometric models, procedures, software or capabilities, as well as gather and disseminate information related to psychometrics.

Key Parts of the Research Program

Extensions to Existing Statistical and Psychometric Models, Procedures, Software or Capabilities

Our research addresses the growing emphasis on high-stakes assessment and the demand for more precise and faster results in a more challenging environment for data collection. For example, it seeks improved methods for estimating student growth percentiles, as well as improved item analysis procedures.

New Statistical and Psychometric Models, Procedures, Software or Capabilities

Our research addresses new assessments that are complex and technology-enabled by pursuing new item scoring procedures, psychometric modeling approaches and tools for assuring quality and maintaining test integrity. For example, it:

  • seeks to improve equating through better methods for handling measurement error
  • encourages the development of new methods for scoring innovative item types and new ways of scoring current item types
  • seeks to increase the capacity and accessibility of new psychometric and statistical software

Information Gathering and Dissemination

This part of the research program seeks to spread and enhance the knowledge of psychometric approaches needed to support ETS's products and create new types of assessments.

How Current Research Supports ETS and Its Mission

Our research supports development of ETS's statistical, psychometric and computational methodology so that it is efficient and up to date. Our products, services and research activities make extensive use of statistical and psychometric methods to:

  • evaluate, assemble and score items
  • aggregate item scores into test scores
  • ensure fairness and comparability across different test forms

ETS also conducts research on educational policy issues, test validity, test fairness and product efficacy.

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