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As far as I know, item response theory is mainly used within psychology to analyse survey data, personality questionaires or in educational setting.

  • Are there other areas (possibly outside of psychology) where IRT is used?
  • And if so, what are they?
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    $\begingroup$ If you take into consideration that IRT is (almost) a synonym of Latent Trait analysis aka Logistic Factor analysis you'll get it that it is Factor analysis for categorical ordinal or binary data. However, other Factor analyses besides IRT exist for categorical data, most notably Optimal scaling PCA/FA and PCA/FA based on tetra- or polychoric correlations. $\endgroup$ – ttnphns Aug 29 '13 at 21:57
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    $\begingroup$ @ttnphns Thanks for your comment. It sounds like an answer to me, why don't you post it as an answer... $\endgroup$ – Jens Kouros Aug 29 '13 at 22:01
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IRT can be also used in marketing for modeling of brand perceptions as I recently read in this post.

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IRT has also been used in political science, e.g. here: http://personal.lse.ac.uk/hix/Working_Papers/Hix-Hoyland-Vivyan-EJPR2010.pdf

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