Psychometric test
Education

A Few Notes on the Relativity of Measurement

Psychological measurements are actually relative. The measurement is not absolute but relative, and we cannot draw an inference from the measurement of an individual’s performance unless it is compared with the reference group. That is to say on the basis of an individual’s performance, only relative inference can be drawn. For example, a zero obtained in arithmetic knowledge does not reflect the absolute absence of arithmetical knowledge.

Science is constituted of scientific values, which lies in the meaningful communication of the observations of events or individuals to other persons. It is towards this end that measurement that is a sort of quantitative description of events on individuals, which make a significant contribution. As a matter of fact the progress of any discipline is today judged by the extent to which it has been able to make a quantitative explanation of its subject matter. The reason we attach so much of importance to the measurements is that, it allows extremely accurate and objective qualitative description of events. In fact accuracy and objectivity are its two principle advantages. Despite the fact that measurement is the heart of social sciences it has certain basic problems, which social scientists need to look into. Measurement would not be of much importance till these difficulties have been removed.

Nothing can be definitely said until a comparison with other members of the class is done, with the subject concerned. All these measurements are therefore relative, and must be carefully dealt with, if measurement is to be meaningful and objective. Psychometric test deals with a lot of measurements. Be it measurement of the cognitive capabilities of a man, his abilities to perform something, his abilities of how well he knows about something, his interest attitudes and many more, essential to be explored before recruiting or selecting that person for a particular job in an organization.

Most psychological measurements are indirect. This is because most psychological variables cannot be observed and studied directly. This is especially of those variables which cannot be touched seen or experienced.  One definite example of this would be intelligence in humans. Hence in order to study intelligence, the observer needs to collect a sample of behavior representative of the intelligent act. However these samples are not free from limitations. These measures may not be very reliable, practical and valid. Often they also like objectivity and hence cannot be a true representative of the actual behavior being measured. In such a condition measurement of any trait or variable itself becomes the source of perpetual difficulty.

In psychological measurement, the entire quantity cannot be measured but only a sample representing that quantity or trait can be. Psychological measurements are usually found incomplete, and are less predictable. In psychological measurement the unit of measurement constantly varies during the process of the same. Such units usually tend to vary themselves during the process of measurement, because there is no standard method of presenting a uniform set of difficulties to all examinees.

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