[IPAC-List] Michael McDaniel's Reference to the so-called Validity-Diversity Dilemma

Joel Wiesen jwiesen at appliedpersonnelresearch.com
Fri Jun 10 18:24:08 EDT 2016


We certainly want to maximize validity, yet we need to consider fairness 
as well.

There are indications that many measures of job performance are flawed: 
men earn more than women, tall earn more than short, and comely earn 
more than plain.  There is also research showing that minorities 
encounter a more hostile work environment, so the playing field is not 

If our tests predict biased criteria accurately, does that mean our 
tests are biased?


- -
Joel P. Wiesen, Ph.D., Director
Applied Personnel Research
62 Candlewood Road
Scarsdale, NY 10583-6040
(617) 244-8859

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On 6/2/16 8:05 PM, Richard Joines wrote:
> Mike,
> You make the statement that "if job-related reading speed has
> undesirable consequences such as group differences, one may wish to
> sacrifice merit hiring for diversity hiring and increase the time limit
> of the exam."
> I guess the question for those who think I/O Psychology is a science
> is... how does one reach the decision to throw the science out and go
> another route?  If the result is lowering validity, I'm certainly not
> about to increase the time limit of any of my empirically validated
> tests.  There would be no scientific basis for doing that.
> I would be interested in what people think about this and how they view
> their role and what limitations they think they should observe, but my
> view has always been to try to maximize validity while ensuring
> compliance with federal guidelines.  Since the 1978 Uniform Guidelines
> we've been compelled to look for alternative selection methods, the idea
> being that if we can find or develop a test that has the same or higher
> validity but lower adverse impact, we should do that.
> *However*, the idea that we should sacrifice validity in order to
> increase diversity strikes me as going too far.  Who are we to make such
> decisions?  We're supposed to be scientists, not social engineers, yes?
> Thoughts anyone?
> Rich Joines
> Mgt & Personnel Systems, Inc.
> www.mps-corp.com <http://www.mps-corp.com>
> 925-932-0203
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