Detecting Erasures and Unusual Gain Scores

Understanding the Status Quo

Authored by: Scott Bishop , Karla Egan

Handbook of Quantitative Methods for Detecting Cheating on Tests

Print publication date:  October  2016
Online publication date:  October  2016

Print ISBN: 9781138821804
eBook ISBN: 9781315743097
Adobe ISBN: 9781317588108


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This chapter provides a contextual background for the chapters that follow in this section. Those chapters cover the use of quantitative methods for detecting two different indicators of cheating: (1) frequent wrong-to-right (WR) answer changes, either by test takers during testing or, more commonly, by external manipulation of answer documents on paper-and-pencil tests, and (2) large score gains from one test administration to another, which is commonly accepted as evidence that inappropriate actions (e.g., cheating-related WR erasures) may have taken place. Like other section introductions, this chapter

reviews the history of the methods used to detect these threats,

describes the nature of these threats with respect to the integrity of test scores,

defines unusual erasures and gains scores,

reviews the application of several quantitative methods to detect these threats, and

introduces important issues that will be addressed in subsequent chapters.

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