ERIC Number: ED183610
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1979-Oct
Reference Count: N/A
The Debate over Open versus Secure Testing: a Critical Review. National Consortium on Testing Staff Circular No. 6.
Strenio, Andrew, Jr.
The context of the debate over secure versus open testing is described, with particular emphasis on tests used for postsecondary or professional school admission. Recently introduced federal and state legislation on testing is also described. Four arguments in support of open testing are summarized: (1) fairness demands that tests be open; (2) open testing will increase the testing industry's accountability; (3) it will increase the public's knowledge of testing and lead to improved tests; and (4) test takers will learn from the information supplied to them. Next, the three main arguments for secure testing are reviewed: protecting test quality; minimizing the costs of testing; and minimizing the problems of teaching to the test and the proliferation of coaching schools. Following an analysis of each of these arguments, comments are made concerning the political, judicial, and situational factors (related to the type of test and impact of testing procedures) which help to clarify the broader perspectives on this debate. It is concluded that, although open testing may have unanticipated and undesirable consequences, it seems that the current status of secure testing needs to be changed. Questions are raised concerning the best means of accomplishing this goal. (GDC)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Huron Inst., Cambridge, MA.