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ERIC Number: ED528539
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jan
Pages: 206
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-4422-0809-4
The Myths of Standardized Tests: Why They Don't Tell You What You Think They Do
Harris, Phillip; Smith, Bruce M.; Harris, Joan
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Pundits, politicians, and business leaders continually make claims for what standardized tests can do, and those claims go largely unchallenged because they are in line with popular assumptions about what these tests can do, what the scores mean, and the psychology of human motivation. But what most of what these opinion leaders say--and the public believes--about standardized testing just isn't so. However, few members of the general public, not even concerned parents, have the time or the background to keep up with the latest findings of testing experts, psychometricians, and researchers. That's where "The Myths of Standardized Tests" comes in. In simple, accessible language, Harris, Smith, and Harris spell out the assumptions underlying standardized tests and point out what's true about them and what's just plain mythical. But they not only debunk common assumptions; they propose better ways to judge the success of our schools. They also offer readers suggestions for ways they can help reduce the burden of tests on their children. Appendixes offer readers contact information and suggestions for actions they can take to become part of the solution to the problem of overusing and misusing standardized tests. Contributing authors are: Larry Barber; Gerald W. Bracey; Tom O'Brien; Ken Jones; Gail Marshall; Susan Ohanian; Stanley Pogrow and W James Popham. The table of contents appears as follows: Part 1 Introduction: This Is Not a Test; Part 2 Chapter 1. Misunderstanding Accountability: The Big Picture; Part 3 Chapter 2. The Tests Are Too Narrow; Part 4 Chapter 3. The Tests Don't Measure Achievement Adequately; Chapter 5 Testing Autobiography: Phil's Story; Part 6 Chapter 4. The Tests Are Less Than Objective Chapter 7 Testing Autobiography: Bruce's Story; Part 8 Chapter 5. Rewards and Punishments Don't Motivate; Chapter 9 Testing Autobiography: Joan's Story; Part 10 Chapter 6. The Distortions of High Stakes; Part 11 Chapter 7. What's Left Out? Part 12 Chapter 8. Why Not More Direct Measurement? Part 13 Chapter 9. The Tests Don't Predict Well; Part 14 Chapter 10. New Ideas for Genuine Accountability; Part 15 Chapter 11. What's It All About?; Part 16 Resource Guide; Part 17 A Medley of Views Chapter 18 'Reading' the Reading Tests Chapter 19 Misunderstood Measurement Mallets Chapter 20 A Use of Tests I Could Support Chapter 21 Within Limits, Tests Can Be Useful Chapter 22 Kids or Cows? Chapter 23 The Tests We Need Today Chapter 24 A Smokescreen Chapter 25 The Game of School; and Part 26 Say What?: An Abbreviated Glossary.
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc. 15200 NBN Way, P.O. Box 191, Blue Ridge Summit, PA 17214-0191. Tel: 800-462-6420; Fax: 800-338-4550; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Books; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A