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The development and evaluation of Africanised items for multicultural cognitive assessment

Show simple item record Bekwa, Nomvuyo Nomfusi 2018-02-02T09:42:30Z 2018-02-02T09:42:30Z 2016-01
dc.description.abstract Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less. Marie Curie Debates about how best to test people from different contexts and backgrounds continue to hold the spotlight of testing and assessment. In an effort to contribute to the debates, the purpose of the study was to develop and evaluate the viability and utility of nonverbal figural reasoning ability items that were developed based on inspirations from African cultural artefacts such as African material prints, art, decorations, beadwork, paintings, et cetera. The research was conducted in two phases, with phase 1 focused on the development of the new items, while phase 2 was used to evaluate the new items. The aims of the study were to develop items inspired by African art and cultural artefacts in order to measure general nonverbal figural reasoning ability; to evaluate the viability of the items in terms of their appropriateness in representing the African art and cultural artefacts, specifically to determine the face and content validity of the items from a cultural perspective; and to evaluate the utility of the items in terms of their psychometric properties. These elements were investigated using the exploratory sequential mixed method research design with quantitative embedded in phase 2. For sampling purposes, the sequential mixed method sampling design and non-probability sampling strategies were used, specifically the purposive and convenience sampling methods. The data collection methods that were used included interviews with a cultural expert and colour-blind person, open-ended questionnaires completed by school learners and test administration to a group of 946 participants undergoing a sponsored basic career-related training and guidance programme. Content analysis was used for the qualitative data while statistical analysis mainly based on the Rasch model was utilised for quantitative data. The results of phase 1 were positive and provided support for further development of the new items, and based on this feedback, 200 new items were developed. This final pool of items was then used for phase 2 – the evaluation of the new items. The v statistical analysis of the new items indicated acceptable psychometric properties of the general reasoning (“g” or fluid ability) construct. The item difficulty values (pvalues) for the new items were determined using classical test theory (CTT) analysis and ranged from 0.06 (most difficult item) to 0.91 (easiest item). Rasch analysis showed that the new items were unidimensional and that they were adequately targeted to the level of ability of the participants, although there were elements that would need to be improved. The reliability of the new items was determined using the Cronbach alpha reliability coefficient (α) and the person separation index (PSI), and both methods indicated similar indices of internal consistency (α = 0.97; PSI = 0.96). Gender-related differential item functioning (DIF) was investigated, and the majority of the new items did not indicate any significant differences between the gender groups. Construct validity was determined from the relationship between the new items and the Learning Potential Computerised Adaptive Test (LPCAT), which uses traditional item formats to measure fluid ability. The correlation results for the total score of the new items and the pre- and post-tests were 0.616 and 0.712 respectively. The new items were thus confirmed to be measuring fluid ability using nonverbal figural reasoning ability items. Overall, the results were satisfactory in indicating the viability and utility of the new items. The main limitation of the research was that because the sample was not representative of the South African population, there were limited for generalisation. This led to a further limitation, namely that it was not possible to conduct important analysis on DIF for various other subgroups. Further research has been recommended to build on this initiative. en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.subject Multicultural cognitive assessment en
dc.subject Fluid ability en
dc.subject Item development en
dc.subject African art and cultural artefacts en
dc.subject Culture-fair assessment en
dc.subject Item analysis en
dc.subject Rasch analysis en
dc.subject Realibility en
dc.subject Validity en
dc.subject Item difficulty en
dc.subject Differential item functioning en
dc.title The development and evaluation of Africanised items for multicultural cognitive assessment en
dc.type Thesis en
dc.description.department Industrial and Organisational Psychology en

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