ERIC Number: ED261830
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1983-Jun-9
Reference Count: N/A
The Inappropriateness of Standardized Testing in a Culturally Heterogeneous Milieu: A Navajo Example.
Guilmet, George M.
The inappropriateness of using standardized achievement tests to measure the cognitive skills of Navajo children was demonstrated in a 1975-76 case study of 17 Navajo preschool and daycare children in Los Angeles. The Circus Receptive Vocabulary Test and the Circus Quantitative Concept Test were given individually to each child. Scores were compared with a sample of 66 randomly drawn children in the Tribal American preschool and daycare programs, and with national results. On both tests, the Navajo children in the study scored the lowest, with results below the national average. Children who had most difficulty with the tests were the youngest and lived in the least acculturated Navajo households, suggesting that the acculturative status of the child's household and the age of the child influenced the child's response to the testing situation. The study concluded that because complex behavioral interactions involved in testing situations are almost never reported, "objective" tests results take on a reality that does not exist. Testing all individuals with the same instrument regardless of individual/cultural backgrounds is a misleading and culture-bound method of assessing and understanding the abilities of any given individual. (NEC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Child Health and Human Development (NIH), Bethesda, MD.
Authoring Institution: California Univ., Los Angeles. Neuropsychiatric Inst.
Identifiers - Location: California (Los Angeles)