[IPAC-List] Question re: MQs

Lance Seberhagen sebe at erols.com
Wed Jan 22 12:42:36 EST 2014

Minimum qualifications (MQs) are employee selection procedures. As
such, they can be valid (or "merit-related") or not valid as predictors
of work performance or other legitimate business objectives (e.g.,
safety, customer service). Thus, MQs are merit-related only if they
have demonstrated validity.

MQs are "blunt" (or "crude") predictors because they are limited to
information collected on the "application blank." Therefore, MQs are
best used to screen out applicants who obviously unfit or ineligible,
rather than to identify the most qualified candidates. MQs are not
valid by definition. One must demonstrate validity in accord with legal
and professional testing standards. The most common ways to demonstrate
the validity of MQs are content validation and criterion validation.

Government civil service systems follow "merit system principles." A
merit system is an HR system in which employees are hired and promoted
on the basis of their ability to perform the job, rather than political
considerations or other non-merit considerations. This requires more
than just competitive examinations. All selection procedures must have
demonstrated validity.

Lance Seberhagen, Ph.D.

Seberhagen & Associates

9021 Trailridge Court

Vienna, VA 22182


www.seberhagen.com <http://www.seberhagen.com>

On 1/21/2014 6:52 PM, Bryan Baldwin wrote:


> Hi all -- question sorta related to a conversation we were having a

> few weeks ago: can anyone point me to any articles, studies, etc. that

> analyze the issue of whether minimum qualifications are

> merit-related? I have done my best to point out that I believe they

> are---at best---a blunt instrument. But I could sure use more heads

> on this one.


> Thank you-


> Bryan Baldwin


> Personnel Officer


> California Department of Justice


> Division of Administrative Support


> (916) 322-5446



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