Psychometric assessment Research papers

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Frosini, P. (2009) Does intelligence imply contradiction? Cognitive Systems Research, 10, 4, 297-315.


Contradiction is often seen as a defect of intelligent systems and a dangerous limitation on efficiency. In this paper we raise the question of whether, on the contrary, it could be considered a key tool in increasing intelligence in biological structures. A possible way of answering this question in a mathematical context is shown, formulating a proposition that suggests a link between intelligence and
contradiction. A concrete approach is presented in the well-defined setting of cellular automata. Here we define the models of observer, entity, environment, intelligence, and contradiction. These definitions, which roughly correspond to the common meaning of these words, allow us to deduce a simple but strong result about these concepts in an unbiased, mathematical manner. Evidence for a real-world counterpart to the demonstrated formal link between intelligence and contradiction is provided by three computational experiments.

Bedeian, A.G., Sturman, M.C., & Streiner, D.L. (2009) Decimal dust, significant digits, and the search for stars. Organizational Research Methods, 12, 4,687-694.

The practice of rounding statistical results to two decimal places is one of a large number of heuristics followed in the social sciences. In evaluating this heuristic, the authors conducted simulations to investigate the precision of simple correlations. They considered a true correlation of .15 and ran simulations in which the sample sizes were 60, 100, 200, 500, 1,000, 10,000, and 100,000. They then looked at the digits in the correlations? first, second, and third decimal places to determine their reproducibility. They conclude that when n<500, the habit of reporting a result to two decimal places seems unwarranted, and it never makes sense to report the third digit after the decimal place unless one has a sample size larger than 100,000. Similar results were found with rhos of .30, .50, and .70. The results offer an important qualification to what is otherwise a misleading practice. 


Trendler, G. (2009) Measurement Theory, Psychology and the Revolution That Cannot Happen. Theory and Psychology, 19, 5, 579-599.


Doubt is raised that revolutions in measurement theory, for example conjoint measurement or Rasch measurement, will lead to the quantification of psychological attributes. First, the meaning of measurement is explained. Relying on this, it is demonstrated that in order to attain quantification under causally complex circumstances it is necessary to manipulate the phenomena involved and control systematic disturbances. The construction of experimental apparatus is necessary to accomplish these tasks. The creation of modern quantitative science through the adoption of this method is called the Galilean revolution. Next the Millean quantity objection is formulated. If the Galilean revolution is not possible in psychology, the task of quantification is not solvable. The objection is defended. Psychological phenomena are neither manipulable nor controllable to the required extent. Therefore they are not measurable.