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Compare and contrast the PF and traditional models of validity Answer

Compare and contrast the PF and traditional models of validity.

Ans) Despite of the fact that psychology has got a long history in using standardized assessment instruments in order to quantify aptitude, attitude, achievement, personality, and psychopathology the publication of Cronbach and Meehl’s “Construct Validity in Psychology Tests” showed the research for the contemporary theory in the earnest of mid – 20th century. The traditional operation of validity followed a statistic concept related with the validity coefficient which being usually represented as r. This coefficient represented the magnitude of the relationship between that of a predictor(the test score) and some criterion(an outcome measure). In contrary to this effect the PF model approach has got its remarkable advantage to the traditional approach over the fact that the model conceptualizes validity as the degree to which respondents can be shown to engage in a predictable set of psychological processes during assessment with those processes dictated as a priori by the nature of the instruments used and the context in which the testing takes place.

The traditional approach not only differs with the PF approach with respect to how validity is conceptualized but also with respect to empirical emphasis. In contrary to the traditional approach wherein correlational methods are used to quantify the relationship between test score and criterion, the PF model uses experimental methods to manipulate variables that moderate test score – criterion relationships, enabling researchers to draw more definitive conclusions regarding the impact of underlying processes such as an autobiographical memory search in response to a self- report questionnaire item and moderating variables such as motivation, mood state on test scores.

Thus, it can be said in short that the Pf model shifts the emphasis of validity theory and research from outcome to a process and from correlation to experimentation. By complimenting traditional validity assessment with a process-driven approach we will not only improve psychology’s assessment procedures but also enhance researchers’ understanding of test bias and test score misuse by illuminating the underlying intra- and interpersonal dynamics that lead to differential performance in different groups.

A wide variety of criteria are predicted by psychological tests, some overt and readily observable, others hidden and only detectable indirectly. When an observable criterion is assessed, the validity coefficient is said to be an index of criterion validity, when an unobservable construct is assessed, the validity coefficient is an index of construct validity. The Pf framework reverses the usual procedure for dealing with extraneous variables that may alter psychological test scores rather than regarding them as problematic, the PF model conceptualizes variables that are seen as confounds in traditional validity assessment as opportunities for manipulation, exploration, and focused analysis – windows on underlying processes that would otherwise remain hidden.

To a substantial degree, the psychological activities in which people engage when responding to psychological tests are determined by the nature of the instruments themselves – by the types of questions asked and the tasks and activities required of the respondent.

The two models are integrated in some ways which can be determined with the help of few variables such as adequate outcome and process validity, adequate outcome but not process validity, adequate process but not outcome validity and inadequate outcome and process validity.

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