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ERIC Number: EJ885530
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Jun
Pages: 20
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 20
ISSN: ISSN-0077-5762
Alignment, High Stakes, and the Inflation of Test Scores
Koretz, Daniel
Yearbook of the National Society for the Study of Education, v104 n2 p99-118 Jun 2005
No one can dispute that tests should measure important content, and for many (but not all) purposes, tests should be aligned with curricular goals. Thus in many cases, alignment is clearly better than the alternative, and nothing that follows here argues otherwise. Unfortunately, however, this does not imply that alignment is sufficient protection against score inflation. Inflation does not require that a test assess unimportant material, and focusing the test on important material--through alignment--is not necessarily sufficient to prevent inflation. In this article, the author aims to explain the relationship between alignment and score inflation. The first sections clarify what is meant by inappropriate test preparation and provide a concrete, hypothetical example that illustrates a process by which scores become inflated. These are followed by a more complete discussion of the mechanisms of score inflation and their link to teachers' responses to high-stakes testing. A final section discusses some implications. (Contains 2 figures, 1 table, and 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A