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Course Catalog

309.718.01 Applications of Item Response Theory (IRT) in Health Research and Practice

Health Policy and Management
4th term
3 credits
Academic Year:
2013 - 2014
East Baltimore
Class Times:
  • Tu Th,  1:30 - 2:50pm
Auditors Allowed:
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Kitty Chan
Course Instructor:

309.712.81 or 330.657.01 or consent of instructor


The goal of this course is to introduce students to Item Response Theory (IRT) and its potential applications in health research and practice. Students will learn about key assumptions, concepts, widely used models and procedures for implementing basic techniques through classroom lectures. As part of each session, students will also discuss an assigned reading on current applications of this method to appreciate the diverse ways this framework has been used in the health field.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Identify key assumptions and concepts of this framework and distinguish between widely used IRT models
  2. Evaluate pros and cons of this measurement approach for different health and health care research and practice applications
  3. Utilize basic techniques learned in the class to examine typical measurement problems
Methods of Assessment:

Two exercises/problem sets (25% each) and a final project (50%)
Students will be asked to complete all three assignments individually using an existing dataset, either an appropriate dataset of their choice or a dataset provided by the instructor.

Enrollment Restriction:

undergraduates not permitted

Instructor Consent:

No consent required