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Psychometrics
Psychometrics

The field of psychometrics aims to measure psychological phenomena. Researchers disagree as to whether and how psychological measurement is accomplished. In his letter to the Grand Duchess Christina, Galileo Galilei (1610/1957) stated that the universe has its own language and set of characters. If we wish to understand our universe, we must understand that it “was written in the language of mathematics.” (p. 237). This chapter introduces the field of psychometrics.

Definition

When we analyze the roots of the word psychometrics, we find psycho, which means “individual” or “mind,” and metric, which means “measurement.” The field of psychometrics attempts to measure psychological phenomena. A more specific working definition of psychometrics is derived from the field's historical roots. Galileo's philosophy about the importance of numbers is reiterated ...

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