Analyzing MOARS Peer-assessment Data with FACETS

 

Step 1

Download and install the MOARS audience response system onto your web-server and install the Peer-assessment Add-on.

 

 

Step 2

Download and install FACETS (paid version) or MINIFAC (free version).

FACETS manual

 

 

Step 3

From the MOARS output, save the “Facets_Rating_Specification” file and the “Facets_data” files in the same directory/folder.

 

The “Facets_Rating_Specification” file contains the instructions (specifications) telling the FACETS software how to read the data file. The “Facets_data” file contains the data. You must have both files saved in the same directory so that FACETS knows where to look for the data.

 

It is a good idea to start a new directory for each data set so that the files for different analyses don’t get mixed up. I do not recommend saving everything to the desktop, that’s asking for trouble.

 

 

Step 4

Drag and drop the “Facets_Rating_Specification” file onto the FACETS icon on your desktop. FACETS will start and prompt for “Extra Specifications”. Click “OK” to continue the analysis. Next, you will be prompted for a filename to save the output file to. I suggest just using the default, which just appends “.out” to the specification filename. Click “Open” to save the output file and the FACETS analysis will run.

 

Step 5

The output file will open. This is a text file that contains the most important results. There are other outputs available from the menus in FACETS, including some graphs and Excel output options, but the most important stuff is all in the output text file.

 

Quick Guide to Understanding FACETS Output Files

 

 

Further Help and Resources
Mike Linacre, the creator of the FACETS software, has a lot of resources on the Winsteps.com website, including tutorials for both FACETS and Winsteps, and an introductory video available here (2MB executable file).

The standard introductory textbook for Rasch analysis is Applying the Rasch model: Fundamental measurement in the human sciences, by Trevor Bond and Christine Fox.


Measuring Second Language Performance by Tim McNamara explains the rationale behind many-faceted Rasch measurement for performance testing and gives accessible introductions to the concepts behind FACETS.

Applying Item Response Theory in Language Test Item Bank Building  by Gábor Szabó gives accessible introductions to the technical aspects of the Rasch model and other item response theory models.