What is validation?

Validity is simply a measure of effectiveness. The process of validation determines if content is job related, necessary on the first day, is fair to all groups of people, and is necessary in order to perform in the role safely and effectively. There are many types of validity, some more psychometrically sound that others. UNA Test uses EVP (Expert Validation Protocol) – a content validation methodology, leveraging subject matter experts (who actually work in the field) to identify critical aspects of job duties, knowledge, skills, and abilities required of a particular specialty. These experts assist in creating test items directly linked to those critical aspects of the job. EVP is a rigorous process, resulting in an assessment that is defensible from a legal perspective and accurate when trying to determine baseline competency.

Why is validation important?

“Validation” is not a buzzword that should be taken lightly. When testing providers claim that their content is “validated” or “nationally validated,” they are stating that EACH of their exams/tests were created using a formal validation methodology and have empirical evidence to support the claim. Such evidence is required in a court of law, should an employer be challenged for discriminatory hiring practices. If a testing provider cannot articulate the type of validation used, chances are – it is not properly validated – red flag! Moreover, an “advisory board/committee” cannot properly validate a test if they do not possess the experience in the actual subject matter. Facilitate the work, yes, but claiming that the same group of 5, 6 or even 20 RNs can validate over 200 clinical specialties, is frankly, dishonest and misleading.

Due diligence is key. Ask your testing provider for a Technical Report for at LEAST one of the exams you use frequently. If it takes them longer than 24 hours to provide, another red flag here! Ask for evidence of exam content being updated, at a minimum, within the past 3 years. Anything outside of that, another red flag! We all understand the importance of confirming competency in healthcare professionals. The patients served depend on qualified and competent individuals. This can only be done through sound validation practices.

UNA automatically decreases your RISK!

UNA helps move your organization to the LOW risk category. For more information on verifying competency in your healthcare professionals, decreasing risk for your organization and meeting executives who are passionate about providing true validated assessments, give UNA a call today.

You’re at risk, and details matter.

We know leaders and executives are continuously juggling between risks and benefits. Managing these isn’t easy because the devil is in the details. If you use a testing provider for competency assessment, are you confident they are minimizing your risk for discriminatory hiring practices? If they can’t clearly articulate the details about content validation, your organization is at risk. The first step at probing further is by asking a few simple questions: