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Teachers and Testing

Teachers and Testing

David A. Goslin
Copyright Date: 1967
Published by: Russell Sage Foundation
Pages: 224
  • Book Info
    Teachers and Testing
    Book Description:

    Discusses the uses and abuses of intelligence testing in our educational systems. Dr. Goslin examines teachers' opinions and practices with regard to tests and finds considerable discrepancies between attitude and behavior. He points to the need for formulation of school policies that clearly specify what role teachers are to play in the measurement process. Dr. Goslin makes several policy recommendations, stressing the idea that the measuring process must take into account many aspects of a child's background and characteristics, and must guard against premature labeling or over-categorization.

    eISBN: 978-1-61044-634-1
    Subjects: Education, Psychology, Sociology

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-xviii)
  3. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xix-xx)
    David A. Goslin
  4. 1 Introduction
    (pp. 1-11)

    From the earliest beginnings of society, men have measured the abilities of other men and have recognized the existence of differences in the abilities possessed by different individuals. As human societies have grown in size and complexity the recognition of individual differences has increasingly been reflected in the social structure of societies. Ability is not the only basis on which social differentiation occurs, of course, and it has only been in the past half-century in the most highly developed societies that attempts have been made systematically to evaluate intellectual abilities and to make use of this evaluation as a basis...

  5. 2 The uses of standardized tests in schools
    (pp. 12-32)

    This chapter summarizes data gathered from several sources to provide a picture of standardized test use in public elementary and public, private, and parochial secondary schools. Basic information on the frequency of test use is supplemented by reports of school officials on the ways test scores are used in their schools, and data on the frequency with which scores are reported to parents and children will be analyzed. In most cases comparisons between testing program variables, such as frequency of test giving, and other characteristics of the school or community setting will be made.

    By now, of course, a number...

  6. 3 Experience of teachers with tests and testing
    (pp. 33-48)

    Along with data on school policies concerning standardized testing, we were interested at the outset in knowing more about the amount of contact individual teachers have had with standardized tests, both in their training and in their role as teacher. This information is important not only in its own right, as an indication of the part standardized tests play in the day-to-day activities of teachers, but also as a major factor in the extent to which tests influence other aspects of the teacher role, for example, as a stimulus to modifying course content or methods.

    The data presented in this...

  7. 4 The opinions of teachers about tests
    (pp. 49-78)

    The opinions that teachers hold about tests and their use comprise a major dimension of the complex of variables influencing the way in which tests are actually used by teachers, as well as how they affect the teacher’s performance of his duties. In this chapter we shall consider two distinct sets of opinions about tests: opinions about the nature of tests and the abilities they allegedly measure, and opinions about how test instruments ought to be used in schools. In our approach to the general question of the role of teachers in testing, we assumed that the attitudes and opinions...

  8. 5 The role of teacher as test user
    (pp. 79-106)

    It is virtually impossible to obtain any direct information about the extent to which teachers actually make use of standardized test scores in the performance of their duties. Even if one were able to look over a teacher’s shoulder as he filled out his grade sheet or wrote recommendations to college-admissions offices or evaluated pupils’ qualifications for placement in special classes, it is unlikely that one could tell what part test scores were playing in the decisions the teacher was making. Further, it is extremely doubtful that teachers themselves know in an objective way how much test scores influence their...

  9. 6 The teacher as a coach for tests
    (pp. 107-125)

    One of the most frequently voiced criticisms of standardized testing is that it results in excessive efforts on the part of teachers to prepare their students for tests, especially those given in connection with some external testing programs like the College Entrance Examination Board or the New York State Regents’ Examinations. The result, it is often claimed, is that teachers emphasize only those things covered by the test to the detriment of other important aspects of their subjects or, even more important, are afraid to introduce innovations in teaching techniques that might result in their students doing poorly on standardized...

  10. 7 Conclusion
    (pp. 126-140)

    In this report we have tried to present as complete and detailed a picture of teacher involvement in standardized testing as survey data permit. Many of the findings must be viewed as tentative owing to the nature of the various samples of respondents from whom data were gathered. As in any survey, many results made us wish that additional or different questions had been asked originally. In a number of cases the findings raised more questions than they answered and the resolution of these issues awaits further investigation.

    Public elementary school teachers and students; public, private, and parochial secondary school...

  11. APPENDIX I Sampling and data collection procedures—secondary schools
    (pp. 143-152)
    (pp. 153-185)
    (pp. 186-192)
  14. APPENDIX IV Familiarity of secondary school teachers with various standardized ability, personality, and interest tests (Percentages)
    (pp. 193-196)
  15. Index
    (pp. 197-201)