ERIC Number: ED366400
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
Can a Writing Sample Improve Placement in English Courses? Research Report No. 93-13R.
Rich, Janet C.
An English/reading steering committee was formed in the 1992-93 academic year at Miami-Dade Community College, in Florida, to recommend college-wide procedures and guidelines for including a writing sample on placement tests for entering students. The committee pilot tested a writing sample in two college-preparatory and one college-level English classes in winter 1992 to determine any improvement in student placement; the mechanics (i.e., time, format, etc.) of adding a sample; and the possibility of including reading subtest scores from placement tests in placement decisions. For the 4,250 students who completed writing samples, files were created of their sample and entry-level test scores and final grades received in the courses. Results of the pilot study included the following: (1) approximately 85% of the students with writing samples were judged to have been properly place using test scores alone; (2) of 19 students who remained in one college-preparatory English course after writing sample scores indicated they needed English-as-a-Second-Language instruction first, 17 received satisfactory or passing grades in the course; (3) difficulties were discovered in including a writing sample and continuing to provide one-stop placement testing; and (4) the contribution of reading subtest scores was found to be significant to placement in English courses, but varied by course and test type. Information on Florida placement criteria and a list of writing topics are appended. (BCY)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Miami-Dade Community Coll., FL. Office of Institutional Research.