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

Richard Joines mpscorp at value.net
Sat Jun 11 01:14:11 EDT 2016

Hi Joel,

What's the latest on differential validity research?  I just can't force 
myself to plow through another of these articles.

Researchers have gleefully debated test fairness for about 50 years now, and 
every time it seems there is a consensus that tests are fair for all groups, 
with the caveat that they may tend to be somewhat unfair to whites 
(intercept differences often indicate that minority performance has been 
overpredicted), we know it's just a matter of time until the debate resumes.

Nothing unusual for our field.  Take assessment centers -- we still have 
psychologists who are dedicated to the idea that dimension ratings in 
assessment centers are construct valid, no matter what the evidence 
indicates.  It just makes sense to them, thus that's what will ultimately be 
found if they do just one more research study.

If we restricted test fairness research to those studies that were able to 
use objective outcomes consistent with Brogden & Taylor (The Dollar 
Criterion, 1950), I believe the results for differential prediction would be 
essentially the same, but we can nevertheless run some Monte Carlo 
simulations, and hopefully, we can eventually reach the conclusion many want 
to reach.  The I/O field can be exhausting...

Joel, if all criterion measures are biased, we're in a real pickle and 
should switch to a field that has issues that can be resolved, like 
astronomy or physics.  You agree?

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Joel Wiesen" <jwiesen at appliedpersonnelresearch.com>
To: "Richard Joines" <mpscorp at value.net>; "IPAC List" 
<ipac-list at ipacweb.org>
Sent: Friday, June 10, 2016 3:24 PM
Subject: Re: [IPAC-List] Michael McDaniel's Reference to the so-called 
Validity-Diversity Dilemma

> Rich,
> 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 level.
> If our tests predict biased criteria accurately, does that mean our tests 
> are biased?
> Joel
> - -
> Joel P. Wiesen, Ph.D., Director
> Applied Personnel Research
> 62 Candlewood Road
> Scarsdale, NY 10583-6040
> http://www.linkedin.com/in/joelwiesen
> (617) 244-8859
> http://appliedpersonnelresearch.com
> Note: This e-mail and any attachments may contain confidential and/or 
> legally privileged information. Please do not forward any contents without 
> permission. If you have received this message in error please destroy all 
> copies, completely remove it from your computer, and notify the sender. 
> Thank you.
> 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
>> _______________________________________________________
>> IPAC-List
>> IPAC-List at ipacweb.org
>> https://pairlist9.pair.net/mailman/listinfo/ipac-list

More information about the IPAC-List mailing list