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Reliability

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Synonyms

Consistency; Dependability; Repeatability; Stability

Definition

Reliability is used within the context of psychological assessment and educational testing to refer to the consistency of assessment results. Reliability may refer to consistency over time, within the individual items on a test, across more than one rater or scorer, or across more than one form of a test. Which of these types of reliability are most relevant will depend on the type and purpose of the psychological or educational test.

Description

Reliability refers to the extent to which scores on a psychological or educational test are consistent or stable. Note that reliability refers to scores or results obtained on a test, rather than to the test itself (see [2, 4]). This is because indices of reliability may vary from a small to large degree with different samples of people, across different time intervals, and with different gender, age, or ethnic groups. For some purposes or for some scores or for some...

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References

  1. American Educational Research Association, American Psychological Association, & National Council on Measurement in Education. (1999). Standards for educational and psychological testing. Washington, DC: American Educational Research Association.

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  2. Thompson, B. (Ed.). (2003). Score reliability: Contemporary thinking on reliability issues. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

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  3. Thorndike, R. M. (2005). Measurement and evaluation in psychology and education (7th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.

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  4. Urbina, S. (2004). Essentials of psychological testing. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

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© 2011 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC

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Sullivan, J.R. (2011). Reliability. In: Goldstein, S., Naglieri, J.A. (eds) Encyclopedia of Child Behavior and Development. Springer, Boston, MA. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-0-387-79061-9_2403

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