[IPAC-List] Pass points for employment tests and the Standards foreducational and psychological testing

Bryan Baldwin Bryan.Baldwin at doj.ca.gov
Wed Jul 28 15:40:57 EDT 2010

The key to your question (or is it the answer) lies with "in the absence
of factors that would suggest discriminatory effect or intent." To some
extent then this is the age-old "if a tree falls in the forest..."
question, but looking at cases that have been brought against employers
(e.g., SEPTA, City of Chicago), courts have not looked particularly
fondly upon employers that have set cut-scores based purely on
administrative convenience.

Can you set pass points based on number of positions to fill? Sure.
You could also set it based on the fact that 85 is your favorite number.
Is this a problem? Probably, from purely a utility perspective if it
wasn't set in a job-related fashion. Could it be a problem legally?
Absolutely, if it has adverse impact and you can't provide the related

Bryan Baldwin
Staff Services Manager II
California Department of Justice
Division of Administrative Support
Personnel Programs
(916) 322-5446

>>> "Shekerjian, Rene" <Rene.Shekerjian at cs.state.ny.us> 7/28/2010 11:58

AM >>>
The Standards seem to say that pass points can be set for employment
tests based solely on the number of positions to be filled (4.19 and
4.20). Based on things I have heard and read, I have the feeling that
that is not how things have played out over the years.

Is it really that simple for employment tests? (Gets ready to duck.) Of
course, I mean in the absence of factors that would suggest
discriminatory effect or intent.

I would appreciate any thoughts you would care to share on this issue.



René Shekerjian | Testing Services Division | NYS Department of Civil

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