Press Release

PDRI by Pearson to Lead New Research Program to Investigate Applications for Generative AI in Assessment and Job Analysis

Generative AI holds great promise, but must be applied safely, with strong guardrails; PDRI will share results with the industry in peer-reviewed journals

ARLINGTON, Va. — March 20, 2024

PDRI by Pearson (FTSE: PSON.L), a workforce assessment provider that transforms evidence-based insights into talent management solutions, today announced it will be leading a new research program to explore the applications of generative AI in the development and use of assessments. PDRI will use the findings to enhance its assessment solutions and will release the results to educate industry stakeholders on best practices for the use of generative AI in assessment.

“Generative AI shows great promise to improve assessment development, quality and fairness but it’s a young, powerful technology that contains many unknowns,” said Elaine Pulakos, PhD, CEO at PDRI. “The use of generative AI in assessment needs to be based on rigorous scientific research and adhere to professional and legal standards for the development and use of assessments. We are undertaking this research program to help the industry leverage generative AI to advance our profession, but without compromising the long legacy of scientific and professional rigor that PDRI is known for.“

PDRI’s research will explore how generative AI can be used to elevate the quality and streamline the development of assessment content, improve assessment scoring methods, and diminish the potential for bias and unfairness in assessment processes. Another aspect of PDRI’s research program will investigate advanced security techniques, some of which may be powered by generative AI, to protect test content, reduce the potential for cheating (including generative AI-based cheating), and identify security vulnerabilities.

Most HR professionals believe they will fall behind if they don’t adopt AI solutions within the next 12 to 24 months, according to Gartner. But there’s also a lot of concern about incurring unknown risks and security vulnerabilities. Poor use of AI in hiring has hurt the reputations of employers, impaired their ability to attract talent, violated legal and professional guidelines, and unfairly shut out qualified candidates from jobs in which they could excel.

PDRI believes there is significant promise and opportunity to overcome challenges associated with AI. Through new research that applies psychological and psychometric theory to the use of generative AI in assessment development and use, PDRI will help create evidence-based methods the industry can adopt to ensure organizations are implementing and adhering to the highest standards of psychological testing.  This commitment aims to guide the ways in which AI is used in selection processes within the established frameworks of professional and ethical testing guidelines.

PDRI Principal Scientist Dr. Dan Segall will lead the research program. Segall is a well-regarded, expert psychometrician who previously led one of the world’s largest and most scientifically advanced employment testing programs in the U.S. Department of Defense.

About PDRI by Pearson

Since 1975, PDRI has built a global reputation of excellence by designing, developing and implementing high-quality, innovative talent management solutions that adhere to the highest principles of professional practice. PDRI’s suite of integrated talent management solutions helps government and commercial clients hire, train, develop, manage and motivate high-performance organizations.  

PDRI is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Pearson. For more information visit

Media contact

Jeff Miller
Market Street Group