University of Minnesota
Department of Psychology

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David J Weiss

David J Weiss

David J Weiss

Psychology N660 Elt H 75 E River Rd

Department Affiliations


My primary area of interest is computerized adaptive testing (CAT). CAT is the redesign of tests of ability, achievement, interests, personality, attitudes, preferences – or any kind of psychological variable – for delivery by interactive computers. In a CAT, test questions (or items) are selected dynamically by psychometric algorithms programmed into the computer that identify the most efficient and effective set of items to measure each individual. The result of applying CAT is the capability of measuring each individual to a predetermined level of precision, or classifying individuals with predetermined error rates, with a minimum number of items. Most contemporary CAT procedures are based on advanced psychometric models based in item response theory (IRT). Therefore, my interests extend into methodological issues in IRT as they relate to CAT. One topic of particular interest in IRT is that of “person fit,“ which is concerned with determining whether a given individual who is being measured on a set of test items is responding in accordance with a specified IRT model. Because CATs are delivered by computers, my third area of interest is mode effects in test administration – do test scores differ when test items are administered by paper-and-pencil versus when they are administered by different electronic media (e.g., dedicated or networked personal computers, or through the Worldwide Web)? My fourth area of interest also relates to computer administration of psychological measuring instruments and is concerned with using the unique capabilities of computer administration of tests to better measure variables that are currently measured by paper-and-pencil or to measure variables that cannot easily be measured by paper-and-pencil. For further information on CAT see my Web site,


  • computerized adaptive testing
  • psychometric methods
  • vocational counseling

Educational Background

  • Ph.D.: University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota, 1963.


  • Weiss, David J (2011). Better Data From Better Measurements Using Computerized Adaptive Testing. Journal of Methods and Measurement in the Social Sciences, 2 (1), 1-27.
  • Finkelman, M., Weiss, D.J., & Kim-Kang, G. (2010). Item selection and hypothesis testing for the adaptive measurement of change. Applied Psychological Measurement, 34(4), 238-254.
  • Weiss, David J (in press). Item Banking, Test Development, and Test Delivery. In K. F. Geisinger (Ed.), The APA Handbook on Testing and Assessment. American Psychological Association

Professional Activities

  • President Emeritus: International Association for Computerized Adaptive Testing , 2010
  • Editor: Journal of Computerized Adaptive Testing , 2012
  • Fellow, American Psychological Association Division 5 - Evauluation and Measurement
  • Member, Psychometric Society
  • Member, National Council on Measurement in Education
  • Fellow, American Educational Research Association
  • Editor, Applied Psychological Measurement: 1976 - 2001


  • American Psychological Association fellow

Courses Taught

  • Psy 5862 - Psychological Measurement: Theory and Methods
  • Psy 5865 - Advanced Psychological and Educational Measurement
  • Psy 8882 - Seminar: Psychometric Methods
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