What Happens When Econometrics and Psychometrics Collide? An Example Using the PISA Data

36 Pages Posted: 10 Jul 2017

See all articles by John Jerrim

John Jerrim

University of London - Institute of Education

Luis Lopez-Agudo

University of Malaga

Oscar D. Marcenaro-Gutierrez

University of Malaga

Dominique Shure

University College London

Abstract

International large-scale assessments such as PISA are increasingly being used to benchmark the academic performance of young people across the world. Yet many of the technicalities underpinning these datasets are misunderstood by applied researchers, who sometimes fail to take their complex sample and test designs into account. The aim of this paper is to generate a better understanding amongst economists about how such databases are created, and what this implies for the empirical methodologies one should (or should not) apply. We explain how some of the modelling strategies preferred by economists seem to be at odds with the complex test design, and provide clear advice on the types of robustness tests that are therefore needed when analyzing these datasets. In doing so, we hope to generate a better understanding of international large-scale education databases, and promote better practice in their use.

Keywords: sample design, test design, PISA, weights, replicate weights, plausible values

JEL Classification: I20, C18, C10, C55

Suggested Citation

Jerrim, John and Lopez-Agudo, Luis and Marcenaro-Gutierrez, Oscar D. and Shure, Dominique, What Happens When Econometrics and Psychometrics Collide? An Example Using the PISA Data. IZA Discussion Paper No. 10847, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2998956 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2998956

John Jerrim (Contact Author)

University of London - Institute of Education ( email )

20 Bedford Way,
London, WC1H 0AL
United Kingdom

Luis Lopez-Agudo

University of Malaga ( email )

Malaga, 29004
Spain

Oscar D. Marcenaro-Gutierrez

University of Malaga ( email )

Dominique Shure

University College London ( email )

Gower Street
London, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

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