Introduction to Item Response Theory

Introduction to Item Response Theory

Date & Time

27 July 2011, 00:00




Office of Education Research (OER)



Events Details

Time: 10.00am - 11.30am


In recent years, item response theory has been widely used in large-scale psychological and educational testing. As its name indicates, item response theory primarily focuses on the analysis at the item level in contrast with classical test theory which mainly focuses on the analysis at the test level. The most important property of item response theory is that the person statistics (eg ability or attitude scores) are independent of the item samples and the item statistics (eg item difficulty and item discrimination) are independent of the examinee samples. This invariance property of item response theory makes it theoretically more appropriate to be used in some measurement situations, such as test equating and computerised adaptive testing. In this workshop, based on the basic item response models such as the Rasch model, we will discuss how item response theory works and how it can be used for test equating purpose. In addition, we will also analyse the advantages and disadvantages of item response theory relative to classical test theory.


Dr Serena Luo is a research scientist with the Centre for Research in Pedagogy and Practices, NIE.

Her research areas are in educational psychology, particularly non-cognitive variables in self-regulated learning such as self-concept, achievement goals, achievement emotions, learning strategies and social cultural understanding of learning. Her doctoral thesis was on self-complexity, of which she received the Award for Outstanding Research Postgraduate Student (2008). She is “intrinsically” interested in quantitative research methodology and has published a number of papers both on educational psychology and on psychological measurement. Serena is passionate about using her quantitative skills to disentangle and reveal meaningful relationships among educational variables and looks forward to collaboration with researchers in NIE and internationally.


Please register your attendance with the Office of Education Research at email: by 20 July 2011.

This event is for NIE Staff only.