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Gary Skaggs

Associate Professor


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Dr. Gary Skaggs is an associate professor of education specializing in Educational Research and Evaluation (Measurement). He earned a Ph.D. in Measurement, Statistics, and Evaluation from University of Maryland. To date he has authored and coauthored 25 refereed journal articles. He has also contributed greatly to the field by presenting at many national and international conferences, as well as by writing numerous non-refereed articles, reports, and newsletters.

In addition to being actively involved in research and teaching, he also engages in professional service activities. He is an active member in a number of professional organizations. He currently serves on the Technical Advisory Committee of the GED Testing Service and the Technical Advisory Group of the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards, Principal Assessment. He consults private and public organizations. Finally, he has received various honors and awards in recognition of his exemplary professional contributions, such as the Bradley Hanson Award for Contributions to Educational Measurement. Dr. Skaggs’ contributions through teaching, research, and service enrich the Virginia Tech School of Education community.


Ph.D. Measurement, Statistics, and Evaluation, University of Maryland, College Park, 1984

M.S. School Psychology, Radford College, 1975

B.S. Psychology, Virginia Tech, 1974

Curriculum Vitae

Curriculum Vitae 

EDRE 6684: Instrument Development and Validation

EDRE 6754: Advanced Item Response Theory

EDRE 6624: Measurement Theory in Education

EDRE 6634: Advanced Statistics: Regression

EDRE 6605-6606: Quantitative Research Methods I & II

Dr. Skaggs’ research focuses on psychometric issues related to large-scale assessments, such as educational achievement and certification/licensure tests. These issues include test equating and scaling, standard setting, and differential item functioning. His work frequently involves the use of item response theory models and the exploration of the effectiveness of new methodology to solve measurement problems. Dr. Skaggs’s recent research has focused on the performance of test equating methodology when samples are extremely small, the effectiveness of standard setting methods for passage-based tests, and the validity of test scores from examinees receiving special accommodations due to disabilities. His scholarship appears in such journals as Educational and Psychological Measurement, Journal of Applied Measurement, Educational Measurement: Issues and Practice, and Applied Measurement in Education. Dr. Skaggs teaches courses in introductory and intermediate quantitative research methods, measurement theory, and item response theory. Prior to joining the faculty at Virginia Tech, Dr. Skaggs was an adjunct professor at the University of Maryland and an educational measurement consultant. Dr. Skaggs’ involvement in grant-funded projects also exemplifies commitment to the field.


Skaggs, G., Wilkins,  J. L. M., & Hein, S. F. (in press). Estimating an observed score distribution from a cognitive diagnostic model. Applied Psychological Measurement.

Skaggs, G., Hein, S. F., & Wilkins,  J. L. M. (2016). Diagnostic profiles: A standard setting method for use with a cognitive diagnostic model. Journal of Educational Measurement. 53, 448-458.

Galeshi, R., & Skaggs, G. (in press). Parameter recovery of a cognitive diagnostic model: Evidence from a simulation study. International Journal of Quantitative Research in Education.

Skaggs, G., Wilkins,  J. L. M., & Hein, S. F. (2016). Grain size and parameter recovery with TIMSS and the general diagnostic model. International Journal of Testing, 16, 310-330.

Jones, B., & Skaggs, G. (2016). Measuring students’ motivation: Development of and validity evidence for the MUSIC of Academic Motivation Inventory. International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 10(1), Article 7.


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