Test Construction: Development and Interpretation of Achievement Tests

Test Construction: Development and Interpretation of Achievement Tests

Test Construction: Development and Interpretation of Achievement Tests

Test Construction: Development and Interpretation of Achievement Tests

Excerpt

The basic purpose of this second edition of Test Construction is the same as that of the first--improvement in quality of teacher-made tests of educational achievement. However, the intent has been to make this book better in several respects.

Teachers of courses in tests and measurements, as well as textbook writers, will disagree as to the optimal order for introducing different topics. Some would argue that one first plans a test, then constructs it, then administers and scores it, then analyzes results, and finally assigns marks. Hence they would claim that it is logical to present topics in this order. The dilemma is, however, that proper test planning requires understanding of (1) desirable characteristics of tests, including those related to reliability and validity; (2) the concepts of test and item difficulty; (3) the nature of score distributions and how to summarize them; (4) factors that affect the real weight or influence of different test components; (5) familiarity with different types of tests; and so on. Moreover, one cannot fully understand concepts of reliability, validity, difficulty, discriminating power, weighting, guide distributions for assignment of marks, and the like without some underpinning of elementary descriptive statistics.

This author has chosen to counter the usual practice of apologetically burying treatment of statistics somewhere in the middle of the book and instead has placed it immediately following an introductory chapter. The treatment still makes no pretense of providing thorough understanding or computational abilities. With increasing realization that teachers often . . .

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