ERIC Number: ED354333
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1992
Reference Count: N/A
Beyond the Norm? An Introduction to Standards-based Assessment. Developing a Qualifications Framework for New Zealand.
Standards-based assessment is the student evaluation method favored by the National Qualifications Framework developed by the New Zealand National Qualifications Authority. Before determining an assessment method, definitions of key terms and concepts such as assessment, validity, and reliability must be determined. Good assessments are developed more easily and effectively when assessors have clear purposes and a clear understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of different types. Norm-referenced assessment compares the results each learner achieves with what other learners achieve on the same test. In standards-based assessment, the outcome is analyzed against some fixed criterion or level of achievement. One subtype, competency-based or criterion-referenced assessment, sets a particular standard of competence that must be reached to receive credit. In another subtype, achievement-based assessment, a number of progressively more demanding standards are used and learner achievement is reported in the form of a grade. Critical issues in standards-based assessment center on the following: (1) theory versus practice; (2) how many and what type of assessments are needed; (3) awarding of merit; (4) test difficulty; and (5) test bias. Two extended examples of this kind of assessment are provided; the first concerns assessment of listening in a foreign language unit and the second concerns assessment in a unit on sales techniques; these examples illustrate the need for careful consideration of purpose, validity, reliability, and practicality. Educators should be clear about purposes, choose an appropriate form of assessment, then select the most valid and reliable measures that are usable in practice. (CML)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Achievement Tests, Competency Based Education, Criterion Referenced Tests, Educational Testing, Employment Qualifications, Foreign Countries, Grades (Scholastic), Grading, High Schools, Norm Referenced Tests, Outcomes of Education, Postsecondary Education, Standardized Tests, Standards, Student Evaluation, Student Improvement, Test Interpretation, Test Norms
New Zealand Qualifications Authority, P.O. Box 160, Wellington, New Zealand.
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Administrators; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: New Zealand Qualifications Authority, Wellington.
Identifiers - Location: New Zealand