In proficiency tests the participants' results are usually converted into scores. In some schemes the participants are required to report the sum of the concentrations of a number of analytes and this total also is converted into a score. In such instances the scoring procedure for the total should be mathematically consistent with that for the separate analytes. When these analytes are determined from a single test portion, however, the errors in the results from a participant are likely to be correlated because some stages of the analysis are common to all of the analytes. For a consistent outcome, the scoring method must take account of such correlation.
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