Mark J Gierl

Mark J. Gierl

Professor; Canada Research Chair in Educational Measurement, Centre for Research in Applied Measurement and Evaluation (CRAME)

Educational Psychology

Research Interests

Educational and psychological measurement, focusing on assessment engineering, including cognitive modeling, automatic item generation, automated test assembly, and automatic essay scoring; cognitive diagnostic assessment; differential item and bundle functioning; unidimensional and multidimensional item response theory; psychometric methods for evaluating test translation and adaptation.

Representative Publications

Refereed Publications

Gierl, M. J., Bulut, O., Gao, Q., & Zhang, X. (in press). Developing, analyzing, and using distractors for multiple-choice tests: A comprehensive review. Review of Educational Research.

Gierl, M. J., & Lai, H. (in press). Using automatic item generation to support individualized learning.  Invited paper to appear in Special Issue of Applied Psychological Measurement.

Gierl, M. J., Daniels, L., & Zhang, X. (2017). Creating parallel forms to support on-demand testing for undergraduate students in psychology. Journal of Measurement and Evaluation in Education and Psychology, 8, 298-303.

Gierl, M. J. and Lai, H. (2016). A process for reviewing and evaluating generated test items. Educational Measurement: Issues and Practice, 35, 6–20.

Lai, H., Gierl, M. J., Touchie, C., Pugh, D., Boulais, A., & De Champlain, A. (2016). Using automatic item generation to improve the quality of MCQ distractors. Teaching & Learning in Medicine, 28, 166-173.

Gierl, M. J., Lai, H., Hogan, J., & Matovinovic, D. (2015). A method for generating test items that are aligned to the Common Core State Standards. Journal of Applied Testing Technology, 16, 1-18.

Gierl, M. J., & Lai. H. (2015). Using automated processes to generate test items and their associated solutions and rationales to support formative feedback. Interaction Design & Architecture(s)—IxD&A Journal, N.25, 9-20. Special Issue on Technology-Enhanced Assessment: Agency Change in the Educational Eco-System, Marco Kalz, Eric Ras, & Denise Whitelock (Guest Editors).

Gierl, M. J., & Lai, H. (2015). Using automated processes to generate English and French test items simultaneously. Mesure et évaluation en éducationMeasurement and Evaluation in Education, 37, 39-61. Invited Paper appearing in Special Issue on Methodological Advances in Assessment, François Vachon (Guest Editor).

Gierl, M. J., Latifi, F., Lai, H., Boulais, A-P, & De Champlain, A. (2014). Automated essay scoring and the future of assessment in medical education. Medical Education, 48, 950-962.

Edited Books

Gierl, M. J., & Haladyna, T. (Eds.) (2013). Automatic item generation: Theory and practice. New York: Routledge.

Leighton, J. P., & Gierl, M. J. (Eds.) (2007). Cognitive diagnostic assessment for education: Theory and applications.Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. [Winner of the 2009 American Educational Research Association (Division D) Significant Contribution to Educational Measurement and Research Methodology Award.]

Courses Taught

  • EDPY 500  Introduction to Data Analysis in Educational Research
  • EDPY 505  Quantitative Methods I
  • EDPY 507  Measurement Theory I
  • EDPY 597  Assessment and Evaluation in the Health Sciences (Part I)
  • EDPY 608  Doctoral Seminar in Educational Measurement (Construct Validity)
  • EDPY 697  Test Score Equating

Please contact me if you have questions about my research or our program of studies in the Department. I would be pleased to talk with you. You can also access the CRAME web page at