ERIC Number: ED454895
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2001-Jan
Pre-Enrollment Placement Testing and Curricular Content: Correspondence or Misalignment?
Armstrong, William B.
This is a study of the relationship between placement test scores and academic achievement, as measured by the gain in placement pre- and post-test scores after students completed a semester of English instruction. Two placement tests were administered to a cohort of students enrolling in community college English courses. Pre- and post-placement test scores were analyzed for this cohort of students to determine the impact of instruction on post-test scores. No significant differences were found in pre- and post-test placement scores after a semester of English instruction for both the writing and reading placement tests. This investigation highlighted the problem of curricular misalignment with the placement tests used to sort and classify students on the basis of ability and aptitude for success in college English courses. The discussion section focuses on the fundamental problem of pre-enrollment placement testing that displays little or no relationship to course content, but a strong relationship to a post-test, administered after the term. A primary recommendation of this investigation is that colleges using placement tests to sort and classify students for the purposes of placement pay strict attention to aligning placement test content with instructional objectives of the course. (JA)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A