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Test theory and scale development


NB Language of instruction is English

Admission requirements



The course provides an overview of psychometrics and in particular of test theory. Test theory is presented from the perspective of both classical test theory and item-response theory including an exposition of reliability and validity in all their facets as well as their respective implications for the research practice. Multivariate analysis techniques commonly used in evaluating and analyzing tests, such as principal component analysis, and item-response theory will be presented at a conceptual level.

Course objectives

  • A thorough understanding of the various theories and methodological approaches (data analysis techniques included) which are commonly used in the research programs that are central to this master (achievement level 2);

  • the ability of critically selecting, studying and analyzing literature relevant to the issues and problems presented by the curriculum and the connected research programs (5);

  • the ability to independently formulate, perform and assess scientific research at a level suitable to preparing scientific publications (7);

  • the ability to write scientific reports in English (8);

  • advanced, up to date knowledge of quantitative and qualitative research methodology (9).


Lectures Computer labs Exams

Mode of instruction

  • Six lectures

  • Five computer lab sessions, participation is mandatory.

  • Group assignment

Assessment method

The final grade will be based on a written exam (60%) and an oral presentation in class of a (group) assignment (40%). Both the written exam and the oral presentation of the group assignment (individually graded) must each be 5.5 or higher. Both the exam and the assignment can only be retaken in case they are below the pass grade. In the case that the presentation of the group assignment is deemed insufficient, the student is given the opportunity to complete the assignment to a satisfactory level within a time frame set by the instructors in a written essay. Participation in the lab classes is mandatory and failure to participate may lead to additional assignments set by the instructors.


During this course Blackboard is used.

Reading list

  • Furr, R.M. (2018). Psychometrics. An introduction (3th ed.). Los Angeles, etc: Sage Publications, Inc.



Students need to register for lectures in uSis. It is not possible to take a course without a valid registration.


Students are not automatically registered for exams. They can register themselves in uSis until 10 calendar days before the exam date at the latest. Students who are not registered will not be permitted to take the exam.

Please consult the course and exam registration website for information on registration periods and further instructions.

Contact information

The course manager is dr. Harold Nefs.