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Argument-Based Validation in Testing and Assessment

Argument-Based Validation in Testing and Assessment

April 2020 | 160 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

Carol A. Chapelle shows readers how to design validation research for tests of human capacities and performance. Any test that is used to make decisions about people or programs should have undergone extensive research to demonstrate that the scores are actually appropriate for their intended purpose. Argument-Based Validation in Testing and Assessment is intended to help close the gap between theory and practice, by introducing, explaining, and demonstrating how test developers can formulate the overall design for their validation research from an argument-based perspective.

List of Tables
List of Figures
Series Editor’s Introduction
About the Author
Chapter 1: What Is Argument-Based Validity?
Introducing Argument-Based Validity

The Academic Tradition of Validity

Evolving Concepts in Testing


Chapter 2: Validity Argument Design
Expressing Interpretations and Uses: Three Example Tests

Using Claims and Inferences to Express Interpretations and Uses

Structuring Claims in a Validity Argument: From Grounds to Conclusions

Identifying Evidence: Warrants, Assumptions, and Backing

Identifying Weaknesses and Limitations in Arguments: Rebuttals

The Language of Validity Argument

Chapter 3: Uses and Consequences of Test Scores
Why Start With Use and Consequences?

Inferences About Use and Consequences

Iowa Assessments: Warrants for Consequence Implication and Utilization

TOEFL iBT: Warrants for Consequence Implication and Utilization

MSCEIT: Warrants for Consequence Implication and Utilization

Potential Rebuttals

Chapter 4: Construct-Related Inferences: Explanation and Extrapolation
Constructs in Validity Arguments

Explanation Inferences for Traits

Extrapolation Inferences for Performance

Combining Explanation and Extrapolation for Interactionalist Constructs

Threats to Construct-Related Inferences

Chapter 5: Consistency-Related Inferences: Generalization and Evaluation
Claims About Score Consistency in Validity Arguments

Generalization Inferences for Test Scores

Evaluation Inferences for Test Tasks

Threats to Reliability

Chapter 6: Content Domain-Related Inference: Domain Definition
Test Development in Validity Arguments

The Domain Definition Inference

Domain Definition for the Example Tests

Chapter 7: Building a Validity Argument
The Logic of Validity Arguments

The Sociocultural Milieu of Validation

Developing a Validity Argument


Chapelle’s “Argument-Based Validation in Testing and Assessment” is among the best-written texts on test validity. It is an up-to-date, cogent presentation from a logical – as opposed to strictly psychometric – perspective.

Shlomo Sawilowsky
Wayne State University

This text address complex philosophical discussions related to validity and reliability in an accessible way. It models a way of thinking about assessment decisions that many of our students need to be successful in their future work!

Amanda C. La Guardia
University of Cincinnatti

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