An Extended Taxonomy of Variants of Computerized Adaptive Testing


  • Robert Mislevy
  • Roy Levy
  • John T. Behrens


This paper builds on foundational work on probabilistic frames of reference and principled assessment design to explore the role of adaptation in assessment. Assessments are characterized in terms of their claim status, observation status, and locus of control. The relevant claims and observations constitute a frame of discernment for the assessment. Adaptation occurs when the frame is permitted to evolve with respect to the claims or observations (or both); adaptive features may be controlled by the examiner or the examinee. In describing the various combinations of these characteristics, it is argued that an online format is preeminent for supporting common and emerging assessment practices in light of adaptation.