ERIC Number: ED183300
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Jun-7
Reference Count: 0
Border Community College Consortium Tests: Standardize Tests Developed for Mexican-American Students.
Lopez, Hector L.
Because existing standardized college examination tests did not accurately measure the potential for learning of bilingual/bicultural populations, the Border Community College Consortium began in 1971 to develop two standardized tests to address the strengths and weaknesses of Mexican American students in writing, reading, and listening to the English used in college classes. Specifically written for Southwestern freshmen Mexican American students with a Spanish speaking background, the tests were (1) the Descriptive Test of English Skills (DTES), designed as both a diagnostic and a placement tool, and (2) the Verbal Aptitude Test, concerned with examining the students' language strengths in English, Spanish, and a bilingual mode. Results of sample testing of 804 students in 5 of the 6 Consortium colleges indicated that those who took the test appeared to have a better achievement record, a higher grade point average, a higher English class average, and a better persistence record. Although formal studies are needed to assess the diagnostic utility and placement efficiency of the DTES, test results indicate there are good possibilities for successful placement of Mexican American students in English courses. Formal studies are also needed to assess the interrelationship of the three segments of the Verbal Aptitude Test. (SB)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Biculturalism, Bilingual Students, Bilingualism, College Freshmen, Diagnostic Tests, English (Second Language), Measurement Instruments, Mexican Americans, Minority Groups, National Competency Tests, Spanish Speaking, Staff Development, Standardized Tests, Student Placement, Test Construction, Test Reliability
Publication Type: Tests/Questionnaires; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Border Community College Consortium; Descriptive Test of English Skills; United States (Southwest); Verbal Aptitude Test