Standard Article

Test Standardization

  1. Kurt F. Geisinger

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0986

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Geisinger, K. F. 2010. Test Standardization. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–2.

Author Information

  1. University of Nebraska–Lincoln

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


The standardization of a test is the establishment of uniform procedures for the administration and scoring of the instrument. If psychological measurement is defined as the use of rules assigning numbers to relative “quantities” of psychological constructs associated with persons, then test standardization is determining and explicating those rules. Without standardization, measurement is only an informal process that varies from examiner to examiner. Historical impetus for the concern with control on the part of examiners arose from the nineteenth-century experimental psychologists from Leipzig, where work demonstrated that minor variations in giving instructions and making observations resulted in behavioral differences (Anastasi & Urbina, 1997). The first standardized tests appeared in the beginning of the twentieth century, when E. L. Thorndike, an experimental psychologist, and others extended the principles learned in a laboratory to psychological measurement. The history of standardized testing may be found in Dubois (1970).


  • psychological testing;
  • standardized tests;
  • test administration