Let me start off by stating one of the reasons why I need to do cardio-respiratory exercises:
The Kare Kare (the picture above) is a traditional Philippine stew complimented with a thick, savory peanut sauce and uses ox tail, pork leg, tripe, or beef slices as meat ingredients, along with slices of eggplant, string beans, and pechay (chinese cabbage) coupled with bagoong – My favorite dish.
If I am served a bowl of kare kare, after tasting, I would be either so satisfied, a little satisfied, or less satisfied.
I have this standard for the deliciousness of kare kare due to my preferences, so if another variation of the dish comes, I will compare its flavor to the previous kare kares I have taken. If it tastes good, according to how I would like the kare kare to be cooked, I will be so satisfied, if it tastes like a little deviating to the level of sweetness or saltiness that I like, then I will be satisfied but only a little, and then if it tastes too salty or too sweet, I will be less satisfied. Of course, if another variation comes, I will taste it and decide again according to my preferences, then the cycle continues. Imagine that I have tasted 100 varieties of kare kare, the 101st variation that I will taste will be judged on my previous experiences of the dish and will naturally fall in my standards of a so satisfying, a little satisfying, or a less satisfying kare kare.
Basically, that is how norms work! Generally, norms are standards which should be complied or reached. Zooming in, norms, in the book of Angoff (1984), Scales, Norms, and Equivalent Scores, are the scores of members in a particular population where a particular score is compared to. For example, I have an instrument which measures sales potential skills. A candidate will take that instrument and have a certain score of 4 out of 10 .
Is it high or low? I would not be sure. What are the standards for “high” and “low” performance? In their article, The dutch review process for evaluating the quality of psychological tests: history, procedure and results, Evers, Sijtsma, Lucassen, & Meijer (2010) explained that the raw score is difficult to interpret and is unsuited for practical use.
Questions now arise: To what should I compare it to? What perspective should I be looking at? In what way should I interpret the data? And how can I be sure that the 4 out of 10 score would where, relatively, the performance of the candidate truly falls?
This is where norms come in. Norms are there to help the administrator to give meaning to the raw score to see where the score falls in the curve which would be limited by the demographics of a certain group; that the tendency of his or her performance is accurately predicted by his or her score when compared to the representative performance or the scores of the members of that certain group. This gives now confidence to the administrator to say that the individual really performed well or poor.
So then, I could compare the score of the individual to a group which has the scores of the national population, or of a foreign organization, or of a certain industry or a certain group, or of a certain age, gender, and other demographics as explained in the research letter of Schuhfried, in the light of the sales potential skills. It would really depend on what is needed. It would depend on which standard the tester or the organization would like to bank on.
Norms are important in determining the accuracy of the performance happening again given by a human, or an animal, or an event, or a phenomenon, or even just a kare kare.
Angoff, W. (1984). Scales, Norms, and Equivalent Scores. Educational Testing Service: Princeton, NJ.
Evers, A., Sijtsma, K., Lucassen, W., & Meijer, R. (2010). The dutch review process for evaluating the quality of psychological tests: history, procedure and results. International Journal of Testing, 10, 295-317.
Schuhfried, (n.d.). Working with the norm: standardization as the basis of psychological diagnosis. Vienna Test System Neuro. Retrieved from http://schuhfried.at/fileadmin/content/2_Letter_en/NL_RL_NEURO_Norms.en.pdf.
Originally posted on LinkedIn last November 12, 2015
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