Assessing Basic Academic Skills in Higher Education: The Texas Approach

By Richard T. Alpert; William Phillip Gorth et al. | Go to book overview
A Pre-TASP Test will be available for use on college and university campuses. It will be comparable in content to the regular academic skills test and will be semi-secure. The Pre-TASP Test will allow a college to assess the academic skills of entering students and to generate scores on a schedule set by the institution for those individuals. While the Pre-TASP Test will not count toward the requirement of passing the academic skills test, it will offer students an opportunity to assess their performance status and to begin needed developmental education.
In the first year of the TASP Test, there will be several test administrations at over one hundred test centers across the state of Texas.

Program Support
The major purpose of the various program support activities for students and their institutions is to address the needs of students who may be "at risk." These needs will be addressed in the following ways.
Early notification about this program will be provided to examinees and affected Texas institutions of higher education by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board and the Texas Education Agency.
Substantial and timely information about the test will be available to examinees and institutions of higher education both before and after test administration. This information will include listings of the test skills, sample test questions, a preliminary test, diagnostic score reports, a study guide, and other resources. These materials are intended to support individuals as they prepare to take or retake the test.
Developmental education will be made available by institutions to students who demonstrate weaknesses in one or more skill areas. While developmental education will take different forms on different campuses, instruction will focus on bringing students up to the standards set by the state.
The test administration schedule will include convenient opportunities to retake the examination.

Summary

The ability of students to benefit from the talent and wisdom of our college faculty rests, in no small part, on the level of academic skills students possess. Without an adequate foundation in reading, writing, and mathematics, students are handicapped in their ability to benefit from higher education.

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