Approaches to probabilistic unfolding

  • Patrick Bossuyt
Part of the Recent Research in Psychology book series (PSYCHOLOGY)


The method of paired comparisons is a technique for the collection of data used in a variety of fields such as acoustics, animal ecology, choice behavior, dentistry, economics, epidemiology, food science, marketing, optics, personnel testing, preference testing, psychometrics, sensory testing, sports, taste testing and others (David, 1988). Alternatives are presented in pairs to one or more subjects, who are asked to pick one of them. Making such a binary choice is probably the simplest of all choice tasks. For this reason, this method is primarily used in cases where judgements are necessarily subjective. The method is essentially due to Fechner, and several parametric and nonparametric methods for analyzing such data have been proposed ever since. Bradley (1976) and David (1988) have summarized most of these methodological approaches.


Ideal Point Preference Function Choice Probability Double Sampling Ideal Alternative 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patrick Bossuyt
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for Clinical Decision Making, Medical FacultyErasmus University RotterdamRotterdamThe Netherlands

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