List several instructional decisions and explain how the use of tests and other types of assessments can improve each?
In Massachusetts, the state superintendent used the written examinations as a way for the public schools accountable for the results. The administered spelling and mathematics tests for the schoolchildren have raised the efficiency of the use of time instruction. The used of multiple-choice technology has spread and the number of achievement test are being published during the WW 1 and 2, and up to the present, respectively. The ESEA or Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 have put the largest framework of federal efforts known as the Title I; the largest federal program to assist the elementary and secondary education. The standardized test is the result of the testing demands of the Title I Evaluation and Reporting System or TIERS that contributed a substantial expansion.
Minimum-competency testing or MCT Reform
The program has focused on the basic skills with the minimal essentials for the next grade level. It is in the rule that students have the adequate notification about the test and have received the proper demonstration to learn the materials tested.
Reliance of Tests as a Mechanism of Reform
The Nation at Risk has recommended the use of tests as instruments to improve education through better student credentials, remedial interventions, and advanced learning.
It emphasized the accountability associated with excellent standards that shaped the assessment and acceptable performance and requires the students to perform substantial tasks.
Why it is necessary to specify what is to assess before selecting or constructing an assessment instrument?
One of the most significant considerations in the development of an assessment plan is the decision or specification about an assessment instrument to measure the desired outcome. To choose the most effective and efficient instrument is to choose first the factors involved in the assessment plan. The key to effective standards is to identify the specific needs of the students to learn and determine the standard results, the content standards, and performance standards.
What are some of the perceived advantages and disadvantages of fixed-choice tests relative to complex-performance assessments?
Examples of fixed-choice test are true or false test, multiple-choice test, and matching type test. The fixed-choice test has several advantages such as versatility (adaptable to the measurement of a wide variety of learning outcomes including reasoning, making inferences, solving problems, exercising judgment and demonstrating knowledge) and efficiency (items permit wide sampling and broad coverage of the content domain). Another advantages are scoring accuracy and economy (easy to obtain, and machine or clerical assistants can economically apply scoring keys), good reliability, diagnosis wise (provide diagnostic information about the learning of individual students or groups), control of difficulty, reduction of guessing, freedom from response sets, and amenable to item analysis. Its disadvantages are over-emphasized factual knowledge and low-level skills at the expense of a higher order problem solving and the conceptual skills and drive instructions that are inconsistent with the current understanding of cognition and learning.
Examples of complex-performance test are essay questions, open-ended mathematics problem, and laboratory experiment, creation of art, oral presentation, projects, and exhibit of works. The advantages are the following: the focus on complex learning not measured by other method, assess procedures and the product (teachers can observe the students while at work or activity using the proper tools), and it communicates the instructional goals and learning of the students. Some of the disadvantages are the following: the students can only respond with a short period, very time consuming for students and teachers, it requires a high degree of expertise and training, relies on extended tasks and the analysis of complex student performances.
Classify each of the following by indicating whether it refers to placement assessment, formative assessment, diagnostic assessment, or summative assessment:
- An end-of-course test used to assign grade
- A test of mathematics skills on the first day of algebra
- An assessment in science used to assess learning progress
- A device for observing and recording reading errors
- Diagnostic assessment
- Formative assessment
- Formative assessment
- Diagnostic assessment
List the similarities and differences between criterion-referenced assessment and norm- referenced assessment. For what purposes is each most useful?
The dimensions of the similarities and differences between criterion-referenced assessment and norm- referenced assessment are purpose, content, item characteristics, and score interpretation.
In the criterion-referenced assessment, its purpose is to determine whether every student has achieved he specific concepts or skills and to identify the knowledge before and after the activity. The content is that, it measures the specific skills that the designated curriculum based upon and identifies the skills by the teachers and experts, and the instructional objectives skills presented. To obtain adequate sample of student performance and to minimize the effect of guessing is to test every skill several times and parallel to its difficulty. The comparison of scores of every student is necessary to have an acceptable achievement and relevant performance of examinees.
In the norm- referenced assessment, its purpose is to rank every student considering the achievement of different areas of knowledge and to discriminate between the low and high achievers. The content is to measure the broad skills areas from variety of textbooks and curriculum experts’ judgments. Its item characteristics has focused on every skill tested less than four items, and items vary in its difficulty. The selection of items is important to discriminate between the low and high achievers. The score interpretation in every student has compared with other examinees and the scores are usually in percentile or grade equivalent score. The achievement of every student, reported in broad skill and some in individual skill report.