Adaptive testing

Adaptive testing can be described as the most efficient way of testing since it intelligently adjusts itself to the trait level of each individual person taking the test. In computerized adaptive testing (CAT) the test taker is administered a question from a pool of questions with known statistical properties and if the response is correct, a more difficult question is administered – otherwise an easier question is administered. This process is continued until a predetermined measurement precision is achieved. Research has shown that CATs can yield more precise measures than conventional tests with less than half the number of questions. This is achieved through only administering appropriate questions to each person – in contrast to conventional testing in which many (most) questions are either too easy or too difficult for all test takers. Since different sets of questions are administered to different people, test security is enhanced, also making testing in different time zones and on different days possible.