Suggestions for Improving AERA's Peer Review Process and Quality of Symposia

At the 2013 AERA annual meeting, those in attendance were asked to answer two questions regarding how future meetings could be improved. William Fisher provided the following suggestions:

What suggestions do you have for improving the quality of symposia at future AERA Annual Meetings?

Institute a peer-review rating system capable of supporting meaningful comparisons of proposal quality across SIGs and Divisions; one that (a) is built up from qualitative interviews and focus sessions, (b) is centered on a meaningful map of the construct, (c) includes items designed to represent the entire range of variation, (d) asks enough questions to drive down the error relative to the variation and obtain high reliability, (e) links all the raters to each other through the proposals they rate, (f) fits the data to a Rasch multifaceted model, (g) provides qualitative and quantitative formative feedback to the raters, proposal submitters, and summative feedback to the overall AERA membership.

For more info, see:

Andrich, D. (2010). Sufficiency and conditional estimation of person parameters in the polytomous Rasch model. Psychometrika, 75(2), 292-308.

Bond, T., & Fox, C. (2007). Applying the Rasch model: Fundamental measurement in the human sciences, 2d edition. Mahwah, New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Engelhard, G., Jr. (1997). Constructing rater and task banks for performance assessment. Journal of Outcome Measurement, 1(1), 19-33.

Engelhard, G., Jr. (2012). Invariant measurement: Using Rasch models in the social, behavioral, and health sciences. New York: Routledge Academic.

Linacre, J. M. (1989). Many-facet Rasch measurement. Chicago, Illinois: MESA Press.

Linacre, J. M. (1993). Rasch-based generalizability theory. Rasch Measurement Transactions, 7(1), 283-284; [https://www.rasch.org/rmt/rmt71h.htm].

Wilson, M. (2005). Constructing measures: An item response modeling approach. Mahwah, New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Please provide any additional comments you may have.

It is very odd that a field so reliant on measurement for its most basic purposes is completely lacking in qualitatively meaningful, comparable quantities read off instruments traceable to common units. Everyone pays lip service to the importance of measurement, but almost no one goes to the trouble to seek out the state-of-the-art in instrument calibration or to implement highly advantageous and practical foundations for meaningful measurement in their research or teaching. Perhaps there is an important leadership opportunity here for someone able to bring these issues to the attention of the membership.

William P. Fisher, Jr.
University of California, Berkeley


Suggestions for Improving AERA's Peer Review Process and Quality of Symposia. William P. Fisher, Jr. … Rasch Measurement Transactions, 2013, 27:1 p. 1408-9




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