A statistical lower bound to population reliability

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Discusses the concept of a lower bound sample estimator of population reliability. Although it is known that coefficient α is a lower bound to reliability under very general conditions, it is noted that this property applies only in the population. Based on earlier work dealing with the sampling distribution of α coefficients and with interval estimation, a coefficient ρ({l}) is presented that is a lower bound to population reliability in both the population and the sample. Several examples are presented to illustrate that when the sample lower bound coefficient is adequately high, useful inferences can be made about the population reliability, even in relatively small samples. (16 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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