ERIC Number: ED293886
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Toward Researching the Connections between Tests Required for High School Graduation and the Inclination To Drop Out of School. Project: Effects of Testing Reforms and Standards.
Catterall, James S.
Reported research and analysis concerning competency tests required for high school graduation and concerning dropping out of school point to ambiguous hypotheses about the effects of graduation tests on early school leaving. A review of the literature indicates the existence of data on the process nature of dropping out, the centrality of academics in dropping out, and the complexity of dropout behavior. Research efforts on the impact on student attrition rates of minimum competency tests as graduation criteria confront problems in the widespread unavailability, spotty nature, and incomparability of records kept on dropouts. Moreover, there appear to be significant differences across competency tests used for this purpose. In general, it appears that: (1) the effects of graduation tests are marginal across the general student population; (2) minorities have experienced high failure rates on initial examinations and re-tests; and (3) different testing systems are likely to have different effects on school continuation decisions. An analysis of data from 50 states illustrates the need for generally available adequate statistics describing the effects of graduation tests and standards changes on school completion behavior. (TJH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards, and Student Testing, Los Angeles, CA.; California Univ., Los Angeles. Center for the Study of Evaluation.