Test Development

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Test Development

PTC has extensive experience with all aspects of the credentialing process and is the perfect partner to guide you through the examination development process.



Strategic Planning

Whether you are seeking to establish a new certification program or improve an existing one, PTC can help you define and achieve your strategic goals. Comprehensive planning early on leads to a sound, organized, efficient, and cost-effective credentialing program.

Role Delineation

The development of valid and legally defensible credentialing examinations begins with a properly documented, accurate delineation of the competencies and body of knowledge essential to competent practice. The role delineation (also called the practice analysis or job task analysis) provides just such a foundation for any credentialing program. Our experts will guide you through the process including the development of the survey instrument, administration of the survey, data analysis, and linkage to test specifications.

Generation of Test Specifications

PTC’s psychometric experts will use the results from the role delineation study to develop a valid, legally defensible content outline/test blueprint that will include the test specifications for the examination. This document ensures the proper linkage of examination content to the body of knowledge defined and validated in the role delineation and guides the item writing and exam assembly process.

Item Writing & Review

Our psychometric staff is well-versed in item writing best practices, techniques, and measurement principles. We work with clients to determine item writing goals and develop appropriate assignments. Once we have collected the draft items, we will work with your content experts to review and validate items to ensure that they accurately represent the profession’s body of knowledge, are free from bias, and conform to established psychometric standards. PTC’s editorial team will do a final proofreading before items are added to the item bank.

For clients that are new to credentialing or would like a refresher, we offer Item Writing Workshops to train your staff and/or volunteers on best practices.

Examination Assembly

Draft exams are constructed by first selecting items from the bank, sampling the content specified in the content outline and balancing the number of items in each area to provide the weighting specified in the role delineation study. Factors such as the frequency with which the items have been used, item performance statistics, number of new items, and client-specific item sampling plans are considered. After the first review by PTC, the draft examination is reviewed with the client team and undergoes further editing, revision, and evaluation before being finalized and prepared for administration.

Standard Setting

PTC can assist clients in ensuring that pass/fail decisions are based on sound psychometric theory. We use criterion-referenced standard setting methodologies to set appropriate passing scores.

Test Administration

Our test administration services offer a variety of test delivery platforms, such as computer-based testing, paper-based testing, and Internet-based testing. Our expert test administration staff is dedicated to ensuring positive client and candidate experiences.

Psychometric Analysis, Scoring, & Reporting

After examinations are administered, PTC provides extensive psychometric analyses, scoring, and reporting services. Item analyses, reliability studies, and summary statistics based on the performance of the form as a whole are produced to ensure quality. Data are carefully reviewed and compared with examination objectives as well as with historic data from previously administered forms. Post-examination reports are tailored with each client’s specific needs in mind.

For more information on scoring and reporting, click here.