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Investigating the saltus model as a tool for setting standards

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Author(s): Karen Draney | Minjeong Jeon

Journal: Psychological Test and Assessment Modeling
ISSN 2190-0493

Volume: 53;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 486;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: saltus model | latent class models | standard settings

ABSTRACT
The saltus model (Wilson, 1989; Draney, Wilson, Gl├╝ck, & Spiel, 2008) is a latent variable mix-ture model originally designed for detecting developmental discontinuities. One difference between this model and many other latent class models is that a clear ordering of the latent classes is hypothesized, from lowest to highest proficiency. At higher classes, the relative difficulty of performance on associated sets of items decreases compared to lower sets of items and lower groups of students. Such an ordering could potentially prove useful in the process of setting standards. Although this model has previously been used primarily for the exploration of developmental differences, this paper will investigate the possibility of using the saltus model as a tool to assist in standard setting. Illustrative analysis will be conducted with data that were used in a recent study of the Bookmark method for standard setting, and results will be compared.
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