Modeling differences between response times of correct and incorrect responses

Maria Bolsinova*, Jesper Tijmstra

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


While standard joint models for response time and accuracy commonly assume the relationship between response time and accuracy to be fully explained by the latent variables of the model, this assumption of conditional independence is often violated in practice. If such violations are present, taking these residual dependencies between response time and accuracy into account may both improve the fit of the model to the data and improve our understanding of the response processes that led to the observed responses. In this paper, we propose a framework for the joint modeling of response time and accuracy data that allows for differences in the processes leading to correct and incorrect responses. Extensions of the standard hierarchical model (van der Linden in Psychometrika 72:287-308, 2007. ) are considered that allow some or all item parameters in the measurement model of speed to differ depending on whether a correct or an incorrect response was obtained. The framework also allows one to consider models that include two speed latent variables, which explain the patterns observed in the responses times of correct and of incorrect responses, respectively. Model selection procedures are proposed and evaluated based on a simulation study, and a simulation study investigating parameter recovery is presented. An application of the modeling framework to empirical data from international large-scale assessment is considered to illustrate the relevance of modeling possible differences between the processes leading to correct and incorrect responses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1018-1046
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • conditional dependence
  • hierarchical model
  • joint modeling
  • response times


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