Explore BrainMass

Discussing Academic Assessment

Please provide some assistance with discussing the beliefs concerning the use of academic assessment (e.g., culture, language, standards)? Also, what are the merits of both standardized and alternative assessment methods?

Solution Preview

In the past people criticized tests stating that some are bias to some groups of people. For example, the language used may be a language familiar to a specific group of people and not to another group which means that everyone taking the test will not have an equal opportunity to succeed. However, the validly and reliability of tests have improved as many activists have fought to make these changes. The changes were necessary because standardized testing determines which college you are eligible to attend and what jobs a person can have, so the testing needs to be fair.

Alternative testing was created to meet the needs of the groups of people that would be considered outliers in academic studies. These are the people that are advanced learners or are achieving far below the norm. Alternative testing can come in many shapes and forms. The NCLB, "No Child Left Behind" act simply states that all children must be able to access education and be tested. Therefore, all children need to be treated equally. Regardless of how high or low functioning a child is, a test needs to be created to accommodate the student. Therefore, each state in the USA has created guidelines and polices on how to test those students that do not fall within the normal IQ levels. In special education, teachers put together a portfolio for each subject area to demonstrate the students' knowledge.

It is hard to question the biases of alternative tests because they are most likely teacher made in a special education setting and made specifically for the students. People have not raised any issues about the validity or reliability of the tests because most of the students are passing.

Construct Validity: In the simplest terms, this means did we measure what we intended to measure in a test of some sort. It is a statement that says a tool or test has successfully measured what it is supposed to measure several times when tested. Researchers try to prove their research is valid by way of construct validity. In the field of social sciences people view the studies as an unreliable measure of ...

Solution Summary

The solution discusses academic assessment.