ERIC Number: ED177221
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-Apr-10
Reference Count: 0
Achievement Testing--A Look at Trends.
Bligh, Harold F.
The strengths and weakness of standardized tests, and trends in achievement testing in the last 15 years are examined. The discussion of achievement tests includes survey, instructional, diagnostic, and basic skills tests, as well as tests used for formative and summative evaluation. Minimum competency tests are not examined in detail. Advantages of the tests are summarized: accuracy, objectivity, comparability, convenience, and efficiency. Multilevel achievement test series recognized as providing comprehensive and continuous measurement from kindergarten through high school. Critics are concerned with procedures for administering, interpreting, and using tests; the emphasis on measurement of cognitive skills; the emphasis on recall--rather than analysis, synthesis, and other higher order skills; the reliance on multiple-choice and/or poorly constructed test items; the failure to measure what is being taught; and test bias. It is asserted that criticism has contributed to the improvement of achievement tests. In test development, attention is being paid to: eliminating bias from test items; providing self-scoring or latent image printing tests for more immediate feedback; involving teachers and educational personnel in writing objectives and test items; developing item banks; providing more interpretive and prescriptive information; developing multilevel, scaled score systems; using latent trait models; and providing expectancy tables. The impact of the impetus for truth in testing is still unknown. (MH)
Descriptors: Achievement Tests, Cognitive Measurement, Curriculum Development, Educational Improvement, Educational Testing, Educational Trends, Elementary Secondary Education, Information Dissemination, Minimum Competency Testing, Norms, Scores, Standardized Tests, Test Bias, Test Construction, Test Interpretation, Testing Problems
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council on Measurement in Education (San Francisco, California, April 9-11, 1979)