Reviving a psychometric measure: Classification and prediction of the Operant Motive Test

Implicit motives allow for the characterization of behavior, subsequent success and long-term development. While this has been operationalized in the operant motive test, research on motives has declined mainly due to labor-intensive and costly human annotation. In this study, we analyze over 200,000 labeled data items from 40,000 participants and utilize them for engineering features for training a logistic model tree machine learning model. It captures manually assigned motives well with an F-score of 80{\%}, coming close to the pairwise annotator intraclass correlation coefficient of r = .85. In addition, we found a significant correlation of r = .2 between subsequent academic success and data automatically labeled with our model in an extrinsic evaluation.

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