Summary of Cut Score Process

The first certification examination was administered in a computer-based format during the window from 30 November – 5 December 2009. On 16 December 2009, a psychometrician facilitator from the testing service, Schroeder Measurement Technologies, Inc. (SMT), convened a group of eight knowledgeable and experienced organizational ombudsman practitioners as IOA Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) for a standard setting workshop. The SMEs used their ratings of each item on the certification examination to establish a passing score recommendation for the examination, based on entry-level knowledge of the organizational ombudsman job. SMT aggregated and averaged the SME ratings to calculate the passing score, which was subsequently approved by the CO-OP® Board of Directors.

This version of the examination was administered again, in paper-and-pencil format, on 8 April 2010. Altogether 80 candidates completed the first version of the certification examination.

The second version of the examination has been administered six times in computer-based format, and 114 candidates have now taken that version. This administration of Version II of the certification examination was followed by a similar psychometric process to establish the passing score, including a committee of IOA Subject Matter Experts, statistical analysis by SMT, and final approval by the CO-OP® Board of Directors.

The third version of the exam has been administered 11 times and 140 candidates have taken this version.  Candidates’ examination performance is reported as a scaled score, using a scale of 100-500, with the passing score being 405. To date, 358 people have taken the certification examination, with a passing rate of 93%. Please note examination scores are used to determine the pass or fail result. It is not appropriate to rank different individuals' knowledge levels based on their examination scores.