I need some help in answering questions about norms and norming:
- Can you please address the limitations of norms and norming?
- What are the types of norms and uses of norms commonly found in psychological testing.
- In addition, can you please include a description of the limitations of these norms with regard to the interpretation of scores on psychological tests?
- Can you provide your understanding by stating reconciliation of limitations of norms with their appropriate uses in interpreting psychological test results, please?
Norms are easy to grasp. These are standards that have arisen within a certain population that define certain roles and behavior perimeters. They emerge over time and actually define a population due to their existence. Norms serve to show how the group will see proper behavior. There is a reward attached to it. Norms vary in scope, importance (how much priority the group gives to it), and equilibrium (such as the Nash equilibrium).
For psychological testing, a norm group is a sample of a group that has the same traits as the person being tested. High school freshmen in the South, for example. Just uttering this causes a sense of inadequacy. The person being tested is compared to a random group of people of the same age as myself. I am then tested against random people and told, on that basis, whether I'm average or deviant.
The assumptions here are so great as to defy my vocabulary, but they are, in short, the assumption of identity (or the "mass man"), that the norm group reflects me as "peers," which of course, use to refer to noble classes, not just anyone. That we're all the same (more or less), which is an assumption that justifies a random sample of peers. It filters out the concept that, at least for older students and adults, that many people of my own age are not peers at all. If this is the case, the test then fails.
That I, the test taker, am bound by bureaucratic methods of assessment, that all variables (and people) are created and think the same, that formal, external coherence of concepts is the very nature of truth, and that logic can function without content are all assumptions of norming.
Other norms include social responsibility (for leaders), cultural (very broad), situational, personal, and many others. These can all be used as a norm group. More quantitatively, norms concern variables such as percentiles, ...
The limitations of norms and norming are discussed. The understanding by stating reconciliation of limitations of norms and their appropriate uses in interpreting psychological test results are given.