Psychometric characteristics of cognitive development and achievement instruments in Round 2 of Young Lives
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In 2006, pilots of several cognitive development and achievement tests were carried out in each country prior to Round 2 of Young Lives (YL). As a result of these, it was decided to administer the following tests to the YL children: the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test (PPVT) and the Cognitive Developmental Assessment (CDA). These were administered to assess children’s verbal and quantitative ability respectively in the younger cohort (aged between 4.5 and 5.5 years old at the time of Round 2). The PPVT, plus two reading and writing items from Round 1 and a mathematics achievement test, were administered to assess children’s verbal and quantitative abilities respectively in the older cohort (aged between 11.5 and 12.5 years old at the time of Round 2). The main concern in administering and using the results of these tests is that their reliability and validity is established before using the data for research. This is because these tests for the most part were not developed for the specific contexts in which they were used in YL. Hence, the main goal of the analysis presented in this paper is to establish the reliability and validity of each of the tests administered for each cohort within each country. In this process, the items with the best psychometric properties are different across countries. Therefore, we do not carry out international comparisons of results in this paper but suggest that the test results should be used for analysis within countries (even within countries, different language groups rely on different combinations of items to establish their ability). However, the general construct measured by each test is the same across countries. Hence, a comparison of the relationships between achievement and other variables across countries is a possibility.