British Journal of Mathematical and Statistical Psychology

Utilizing response times in cognitive diagnostic computerized adaptive testing under the higher‐order deterministic input, noisy ‘and’ gate model

Early View

Methods of cognitive diagnostic computerized adaptive testing (CD‐CAT) under higher‐order cognitive diagnosis models have been developed to simultaneously provide estimates of the attribute mastery statuses of examinees for formative assessment and estimates of a latent continuous trait for overall summative evaluation. In a typical CD‐CAT environment, examinees are often subject to a time limit, and the examinees’ response times (RTs) for specific test items can be routinely recorded by custom‐made programs. Because examinees are individually administered tailored sets of test items from the item pool, they may experience different levels of speededness during testing and different levels of risk of running out of time. In this study, RTs were considered during the item‐selection procedure to control the test speededness and the RTs were treated as useful information for improving latent trait estimation in CD‐CAT under the higher‐order deterministic input, noisy ‘and’ gate (DINA) model. A modified posterior‐weighted Kullback–Leibler (PWKL) method that maximizes the item information per time unit and a shadow‐test method that assembles a provisional test subject to a specified time constraint were developed. Two simulation studies were conducted to assess the effects of the proposed methods on the quality of CD‐CAT for fixed‐ and variable‐length exams. The results show that, compared with the traditional PWKL method, the proposed methods preserve a lower risk of running out of time while ensuring satisfactory attribute estimation and providing more accurate estimates of the latent trait and speed parameters. Finally, several suggestions for future research are proposed.

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