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Test Validation 101 2012 NILG Conference August 29: 2:45 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. Presenters: Dan Biddle, Ph.D., and Heather Patchell, M.A.

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Presentation on theme: "Test Validation 101 2012 NILG Conference August 29: 2:45 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. Presenters: Dan Biddle, Ph.D., and Heather Patchell, M.A."— Presentation transcript:

1 Test Validation NILG Conference August 29: 2:45 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. Presenters: Dan Biddle, Ph.D., and Heather Patchell, M.A.

2 Overview of Biddle Consulting Group, Inc. Affirmative Action Plan (AAP) Consulting and Fulfillment Thousands of AAPs developed each year Audit and compliance assistance AutoAAP™ Enterprise software HR Assessments AutoGOJA™ online job analysis system TVAP™ test validation & analysis program CritiCall™ pre-employment testing for 911 operators OPAC™ pre-employment testing for admin professionals Video Situational Assessments (General and Nursing) EEO Litigation Consulting /Expert Witness Services Over 200+ cases in EEO/AA (both plaintiff and defense) Focus on disparate impact/validation cases Compensation Analysis Proactive and litigation/enforcement pay equity studies COMPare™ compensation analysis software Publications/Books EEO Insight™: Leading EEO Compliance Journal Adverse Impact (3 rd ed.) / Compensation (1 st ed.) BCG Institute for Workforce Development 4,000+ members Free webinars, EEO resources/tools Nation-Wide Speaking and Training Regular speakers on the national speaking circuit

3 Biddle Consulting Group Institute for Workforce Development (BCGi) BCGi Standard Membership (free) –Online community –Monthly webinars on EEO compliance topics –EEO Insight Journal (e-copy) BCGi Platinum Membership –Fully interactive online community –Includes validation/compensation analysis books –EEO Tools including validation surveys and AI calculator –EEO Insight Journal (e-copy and hardcopy) –Members only webinars, training and much more…

4 Your Presenters Today… Dan Biddle, Ph.D., CEO –Over 20 years experience in EEO/AA & Testing –Experience in over 100 cases –Author of Test Validation & Adverse Impact (3 rd ed.) Heather Patchell, M.A. –EEO/AA Consultant –Executive Director of BCGi –Masters I/O Psychology

5 Presentation Overview Our goal: –Review “high level” validation criteria for four common assessment devices –Provide basic and practical steps for validating each –Equip you with take-home tools for validation –Provide convincing evidence that validation produces both qualified applicants and defensible PPTs The assessment devices we’ll be covering include: –Basic Qualification (BQ) screens –Physical Ability Tests –Interviews –Written Tests Review the “Test Validation Checklist” for validating each type of device

6 Adverse Impact: The Trigger for the Validation Requirement A Brief Review

7 Before looking at validation…when is validation required? Whenever your “PPT” exhibits adverse impact Single Event: Adj-FET / Chi-Square p <.05 Multiple Event: Mantel-Haenszel / MEEP p <.05 Particular PPT Overall Selection Process P =.006 SD = 2.747

8 Adverse Impact in Context “or” Diff. in Rates? YESNO Is the PPT Valid? YESNO Alternative Employment Practice? NO Defendant Prevails YES Plaintiff Prevails END Plaintiff Prevails Practice, Procedure, Test (PPT) Plaintiff Burden Defense Burden Plaintiff Burden How selection processes are challenged...

9 1.The OFCCP (typically) uses overall adverse impact as a “red-flag” to identify where/when to investigate further. 2.If there is overall adverse impact, the OFCCP will investigate the PPTs in the selection process. 3.It is absolutely imperative that the employer have the data and the ability to analyze the individual steps in the overall process. 4.If the necessary data is not available to perform step analyses, the OFCCP can make an “adverse inference”... (i.e., they can infer impact because the employer did not collect the data they are required to collect). **OFCCP Insight(s)**

10 A Brief Overview of Validation

11 Before Discussing Particular Type of PPTs, Let’s Review Validation in General What is validity? –Legally… “job related for the position in question and consistent with business necessity” –Practically… in jury trials, the test must somehow rationally connect with the job –With the OFCCP and other FEAs, it must comply with UGESP (see –We’ll focus on just two validation methods: o Content validation o Criterion-related validation

12 Guides Related To Validation Techniques Validity Joint Standards Principles (SIOP) Uniform Guidelines Court Precedence Key!!

13 Job Duties Content Validation Process Operationally defined KSAOs Other KSAOs Selection Devices (e.g., application form, tests, interviews) Content Valid!

14 Criterion-related Validity Job Requirements Test Score Job Performance

15 Score on some “Criteria” (e.g., job performance, days missed work, etc.) Score on a “Test” Criterion-related Validity

16 Basic Qualification Screens & Validation Requirements

17 Validating Basic Qualification Screens What are BQs? Some examples… –“Must be able to lift and carry XX pounds for YY feet” –College degree in XX field –Certificate in YY field Basic qualifications can: –Save the employer’s money and personnel resources –Reduce the size of the applicant pool –Allow qualified applicants to rise to the top –Reduce the amount of time it takes to fill job openings –Show applicants that the employer is serious about job standards

18 Questions to ask about your BQs… Is the BQ likely to: –Save your employer’s money and personnel resources? –Result in an actual benefit to the target positions? –Have adverse impact? –Be perceived as a form of intentional discrimination? –Survive an OFCCP Review as: o Noncomparative? o Objective? o “Job relevant” and/or “job related and consistent with business necessity”?

19 Before Launching the BQ, Ask: Is the BQ likely to: –Represent a true “minimum baseline” needed for the first day on the job? –Be clearly understood by applicants? –Be uniformly applied to all applicants? –Discriminate (distinguish between qualified and unqualified applicants)? –Allow an equal opportunity for all applicants to demonstrate that they possess the required levels?

20 Two Really Important BQ Concepts! Important Concept #2: “Validation” is a DIFFERENT STANDARD than the “job relevant” BQ requirement in the IA Regulations Validation sometimes requires a different development process than what might be used to set up “job relevant” BQs under the IA Regulations Important Concept #1: If BQs have Adverse Impact, they Need to be “Validated”

21 BasicQualification Noncomp?Objective? “Job Relevant”? YES AdverseImpact? YES “Job Related & Consistent with Bus. Necessity”? NO=Disp. Imp. DiscriminationYES=Defensible NO NO Int. App. Regulation RegulationViolation Review Standard for BQs Depends on Whether they have Adverse Impact! AND STANDARD 1: Int. App. Regs STANDARD 2: Title VII (e.g., Guidelines, 14C6)

22 “ That standard [the Title VII standard] is applicable as a defense where a disparate impact has already been proven ” (p ). By including the “ relevant to performance of the particular position ’’ standard in the final rule as a limitation on qualifications that could qualify as 'basic qualifications,' OFCCP intends to provide a reasonable limit on the nature of the qualifications used only to define recordkeeping obligations. OFCCP does not intend to define recordkeeping obligations through a presumption that every putative 'basic qualification' involves a disparate impact. Of course, once it is established that a criterion caused a disparate impact, the contractor has the burden of justifying that the criterion is job related and consistent with business necessity (p ). Clarification on the “Two Standards” Offered in the IA Regulations

23 What Review Standards Apply to BQs?

24 24 OFCCP’s Definition of an Internet Applicant There are no record retention obligations at this stage Records must be retained for all job seekers during the following steps in the process. Only job seekers who meet all 4 requirements will be analyzed in your Personnel Transactions and Adverse Impact Analyses

25 BQ Development & Validation Survey Use this survey for validating BQs Each row should contain incrementally higher levels of the BQ See Biddle (2010) Test Validation & Adverse Impact book for details

26 Weight Handling BQs and Physical Ability Tests

27 Common Weight Handling BQs: –Must be able to lift up to 50 pounds daily. –Must be able to lift/carry pounds routinely for a 8 hour shift. –May be required to carry, push, pull, drag or hold up to 50 pounds. –Person must be in excellent physical condition; be able to lift and carry 80 pounds; and be able to work under adverse conditions. Best Example: –Must be able to lift and carry 54 pound boxes times/8-hour shift for feet each carry. A Worked Example… Establishing Defensible BQs for Weight Handling Requirements

28 When it Comes to Setting Weight Handling BQs for Your Job Postings... Honest and qualified applicants may self-select out of your hiring process!

29 One Method for Developing Weight Handling BQs Step 1: Meet with management staff and create a list of the common items that are physically handled by incumbents. Step 2: Obtain weights for each item. Step 3: Survey job experts regarding: –the frequency with which they handle (i.e., push/pull, lift/carry, etc.) the items, and –how they handle the items (e.g., how far, how long, etc.)

30 One Method for Developing Weight Handling BQs (cont.) Step 4: Analyze the survey Data: –Remove “ outliers ” (using 1.65 SD rule) and/or raters with low inter-rater reliability –Establish “ frequent ” and “ occasional ” requirements for various physical activities (push/pull, lift/carry, and other physical requirements) –Establish weight handling BQs for each position at a level where at least 70% of job experts agree (e.g., “ 70% of job experts surveyed agreed that they must be able to lift and carry at least 50 pounds 10 times a day or less ” ) –Final BQ should include weight, how handled (lift, carry, push, pull, drag, rolled), and duration

31 Questions: –Why establish the BQ weight using “ at least 70% of job experts agreed on a weight of X ” –Doesn ’ t that set the weight cutoff too high? –Why not just use the average of their responses? Answers: –After removing outliers, the dataset should represent opinions from the “ normal range ” of job experts –Using the 70% rule will help insure that at least the majority of job applicants should be able to handle that weight –The 70% rule “ trims ” the highest 30% of the ratings, insuring that the benchmark is set at a reasonable level –Using the average could possibly set the weight requirement at a level that 50% of the job experts thought was too low One Method for Developing Weight Handling BQs (cont.)

32 What about Jobs that have Rigorous and/or Regular Weight Handling Requirements? Use a physical ability test! –Key Point: BQ screens are only self-reports! Rigorous physical ability tests will typically have adverse impact on women... therefore: –They must be validated! –Don ’ t rely on “ abstract strength tests ” or “ body measurement methods ” without statistical validity! –Sometimes it ’ s better to measure physical abilities using “ work sample ” tests o This helps insure that applicants can perform the actual job, not just the “ inferred ” job requirements o Applicant perception of fairness is the first trigger for lawsuits!

33 Validating Interviews

34 Interviews and the Courts The question is still sometimes asked… –“Are Interviews really tests”? –Yes, they are really tests Any Practice, Procedure, or Test (PPT) that separates two groups (e.g., men/women) based on two possible outcomes (e.g., pass/fail) is classified as a “test” under the Uniform Guidelines.

35 Interview Defensibility & Validity: Some General Characteristics… Unstructured Structured Single Rater Multiple Raters Generic “one size fits all” Job Specific Open Scoring/No Scoring BARS Least Defensible Most Defensible Unstructured Structured r= r= Low Validity High Validity

36 Litigation Involving Interviews Is there a connection between Interview type and success in court? Williamson et al. (1997). Employment interview on trial: Linking interview structure with litigation outcomes. Journal of Applied Psychology, 82 (6), – Study involving 84 disparate treatment and 46 disparate impact cases where interviews were litigated –17 interview characteristics were evaluated (e.g., objective, subjective, standardized, etc.). –Study resulted in clear findings that revealed the three primary ingredients for successful interview validity defense

37 Key Interview Defensibility Characteristics The Three Primary Factors Are… –Interview objectivity and job relatedness, such as: o Objective and specified criteria o Trained interviewers o Validation evidence –Standardized administration, including: o Scoring guidelines o Minimal rater discretion o Common questions o Consistency –Multiple Interviewers o Implies a shared decision making process o Rater reliability

38 Interview Rating Systems 38  Rating scale: avoid 3-point; use 7- or 9-point  Benchmark answers  Compare responses to benchmarks  Consider more points for certain questions

39 Rating Errors  Halo/Horn Effect  Leniency/Severity/Central Tendency  Contrast Effect  Biases and Stereotyping  Fatigue 39

40 Using a Panel of Assessors  Essential investment  Staff and stakeholder morale  Diverse perspectives  Increased defensibility  Shared responsibility in decision-making 40

41 Validating Some Common Written Tests

42 Types of Written Tests Skill / Ability Tests –Can typically be content validated –Examples include: o Math o Reading Comprehension o Language Arts Job Knowledge Tests –Almost always content validated –Examples include: o Promotional movements o Licensure / Certification Cognitive Ability / Personality –Typically Require Criterion-Related Validity

43 Some Factors to Consider for Any Type of Written Test… Are we measuring KSAs that are needed on the first day of the job? If the test is based on content validity, are the KSAs operationally defined? Do we have a job analysis that can be linked to the test? What is the reliability of the test? How will the scores be used? Does our use of test scores exhibit adverse impact? If so, do we have a validation report that addresses 15B (criterion) or 15C (content) of the Guidelines? –For commercially available tests, have we conducted a local validation study, or a 7B transportability study?

44 “Using” Test Scores in a Valid/Defensible Manner

45 How You Plan To Use Your Test Is Critical! Pass/Fail Cutoffs: –“Normal Expectations of Acceptable Proficiency in the Workplace” (Guidelines, 5H) –Modified Angoff (U.S. v. South Carolina, USSC) Banding: –Substantially Equally Qualified Applicants –Statistically Driven (use Std. Error of Difference) Ranking. For content validity: –Is there adequate score dispersion? –Does the test have high reliability? –Is the KSA performance differentiating? Weighted/combined with other tests –How are the weights related to the job –Do they come from the job analysis or SME ratings?

46 How Tests Can Be Used  Ranking assumes one applicant is reliably more qualified than the other  Banding considers the unreliability of the test battery and “ties” applicants  Pass/fail cutoffs treat all applicants as either “qualified” or “not qualified”  Weighting/combining test scores can be done using “compensatory” or using cutoff on each test then weighting results

47 Characteristics of Pass/Fail Cut Scores –NOT TYPICALLY DEFENSIBLE WHEN: o Using an arbitrary cutoff (e.g., 70%) o Using applicant scores to benchmark (e.g., setting cutoff scores at mean-SD of applicant scores) –TYPICALLY DEFENSIBLE WHEN: o Consider “Normal expectations of acceptable proficiency in the workplace” (Guidelines, 5H) o Usually requires SME-level data or ratings o Tied to job performance –FACTORS TO CONSIDER: o Is the test supported by content validity information or criterion-related information? o How critical are the KSAs measured? o Does the test measure “baseline” or “differentiating” KSAs? o How would current incumbents perform on this test?

48 Comparison Score Uses

49 Setting Validated Cutoff Scores Using the “Modified Angoff” Method

50 Test Validation Checklists Use these review checklists to determine the validity of your PPTs under the requirements of the Guidelines

51 Questions Answers Copyright © 2012 BCG, Inc.51


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