ERIC Number: ED498967
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Jun
My Child Doesn't Test Well. Carnegie Perspectives
Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
The writer examines a variety of reasons why test performance may not always be a valid measure of a person's competence or potential. Citing that a sizable percentage of students perform well in their schoolwork but poorly on standardized, multiple-choice tests, Bond defines and discusses four candidates as source factors for the phenomenon: (1) Test Anxiety characterized by anticipatory feelings of dread and nervousness before a test and a disorienting anxiety during the actual test that, in extreme forms, can literally paralyze the student; (2) Lack of Test Sophistication, the ability to use characteristics and formats of the test and the test-taking situation to obtain a higher score; (3) Automaticity, the ability to recall quickly relevant facts, procedures and routines and to apply these without thinking too much about it; and (4) Test Bias, the simple fact that standardized tests may contain material that many students have not had an opportunity to learn. The lesson, concludes the writer, is that those who make decisions about people on the basis of standardized test performance must keep an eye out for cases where students who should excel, do not so that poor test performance should does not trump a person's actual academic or occupational accomplishments.
Descriptors: Test Bias, Test Anxiety, Standardized Tests, Multiple Choice Tests, Scores, Recall (Psychology)
Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. 51 Vista Lane, Stanford, CA 94305. Tel: 650-566-5102; Fax: 650-326-0278; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://www.carnegiefoundation.org
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, Menlo Park, CA.
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A