Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Educational Psychology

First Advisor

Headrick, Todd


This study explored the relationship between successful guessing and latent ability in IRT models. A new IRT model was developed with a guessing function integrating probability of guessing an item correctly with the examinee's ability and the item parameters. The conventional 3PL IRT model was compared with the new 2PL-Guessing model on parameter estimation using the Monte Carlo method. SAS program was used to implement the data simulation and the maximum likelihood estimation. Compared with the traditional 3PL model, the new model should reflect: a) the maximum probability of guessing should not be more than 0.5, even for the highest ability examinees; b) different ability of examinees should have different probability of successful guessing, because a basic assumption for the new models is that higher ability examinees have a higher probability of successful guessing than lower ability examinees; c) smaller standard error in estimating parameters; and d) faster running time. The results illustrated that the new 2PL-Guessing model was superior to the 3PL model in all four aspects.




This dissertation is Open Access and may be downloaded by anyone.