Thursday, 26 September 2013

Dark Arts Part II - it is not a video game!

Andrew McKinnonProfessor Andrew MacKinnon, Fellow in the Centre for Youth Mental Health at the University of Melbourne and Head of the Statistics Unit at Orygen Youth Health Research Centre presented at the SPHPM today. Professor MacKinnon has been involved in a range of epidemiological surveys exploring mental health, wellbeing, and cognitive functioning across the life span, and has broad experience in the design, conduct and analysis of trials in psychiatry. Prof Mckinnon presented part I of this topic to the school in July this year.

In his presentation titled The Dark Arts part 2 - How to measure things we cannot see, Professor MacKinnon introduced the Item Response Theory (IRT) and variants such as the Rasch model. He also spoke about techniques used for item selection, for studying biased items, and for identifying aberrant or inefficient response scales.

He highlighted the importance of using IRT, as it may lead to better outcomes; when scales are developed in the early phases, when interest lies at extremes or specific locations and when measurement hasn't been subjected to other scales.

The video and the slides for this presentation will be available shortly

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