Cronbach and Rasch

In a "Fireside Chat" during the 1992 AERA Annual Meeting, Lee J. Cronbach remarked on his only meeting with Georg Rasch. In 1955, Cronbach was commissioned by the Office of Naval Research to travel to Europe, meet the leading researchers in educational measurement and report back on interesting ideas. While in Copenhagen, Denmark, Cronbach met with Rasch who was then doing bio-assay work for the Serum Institute. Writing enthusiastically with chalk on a blackboard, Rasch started to explain the multiplicative form of his model. But in almost the first sentence he stated that "our scales have an absolute zero". This immediately alienated Cronbach because he had recently been in dispute with Louis Guttman and Jane Loevinger on the existence and nature of natural zeroes. Consequently, when Cronbach submitted his report on his return from Europe, he felt that Rasch's work had so little merit that he did not even give it a note. As a result it was 12 years before Rasch's work came to the notice of the American educational measurement community.

Cronbach's current [1992] opinion is that the Rasch model works well for messy data. He perceives its chief drawback to be its insistence on uni-dimensionality, and its incompatibility with multi-dimensionality.

[These shortcomings are demanded as necessities in all ordinary measurement devices!]

Cronbach and Rasch. L. J. Cronbach … Rasch Measurement Transactions, 1992, 6:1, 200

Rasch Publications
Rasch Measurement Transactions (free, online) Rasch Measurement research papers (free, online) Probabilistic Models for Some Intelligence and Attainment Tests, Georg Rasch Applying the Rasch Model 3rd. Ed., Bond & Fox Best Test Design, Wright & Stone
Rating Scale Analysis, Wright & Masters Introduction to Rasch Measurement, E. Smith & R. Smith Introduction to Many-Facet Rasch Measurement, Thomas Eckes Invariant Measurement: Using Rasch Models in the Social, Behavioral, and Health Sciences, George Engelhard, Jr. Statistical Analyses for Language Testers, Rita Green
Rasch Models: Foundations, Recent Developments, and Applications, Fischer & Molenaar Journal of Applied Measurement Rasch models for measurement, David Andrich Constructing Measures, Mark Wilson Rasch Analysis in the Human Sciences, Boone, Stave, Yale
in Spanish: Análisis de Rasch para todos, Agustín Tristán Mediciones, Posicionamientos y Diagnósticos Competitivos, Juan Ramón Oreja Rodríguez

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