The scholastic aptitude test was administered in slightly less than three hours, the last half hour of the examination period being devoted to experimental material which might prove useful in future tests. A certain number of tests -- nine in 1926 and 1927, seven in 1928, and six in 1929 -- were common to all forms, and the candidates were scored on the basis of these common tests only, the experimental. tests being used for subsequent study. By publishing several experimental sections each year, it was possible to investigate many problems and to make detailed studies of the separate test items or questions. Some forty-five hundred test items were studied in this way. The present chapter is devoted to an exposition of the data derived from one of these tests.
The synonym test was suggested by Professor Charles L. Stone of Dartmouth College, and 230 items prepared by him were included in one of the experimental sections (sub-test ten, Form B4) in 1927. It was subsequently found that this number of items (230) was excessive for the half-hour time limit, and the number was reduced to 175 in the Form C experimental section (sub-test eight, Form C10) and to 115 in the Form D experimental section (sub-test seven Form D9). The new experimental items studied in Forms C and D were prepared by the writer. One hundred items selected from Form B4 were included as sub-test one Form C given with a fifteen-minute time limit. Thirty-six of the one hundred items used in sub-test one Form D were repeated from sub-test one Form C, two items were drawn from Form B4, and the remaining sixty-two items were selected from Form C10, the 1928 experimental section. The three experimental sections given with the thirty-minute time limit will be referred to subsequently as B4, C10 and D9. The two one-hundred-item tests given with the fifteen- minute time limit in Forms C and D will be referred to as Ct, and Dt. The number of the item to which reference is made will follow the reference to the form, as B4227 (the 227th item in Form B4), Ct10 (the 10th item in sub-test one Form C), etc.
In studying the experimental sections in Forms B, C, and D, all papers of final candidates who happened to take these particular experimental sections were used. As eleven experimental sections were given in 1927 and 1929, the number of individuals taking B4 and D9 was about the same (643 and 655). As thirteen experimental sections were used in 1928, the number taking C10 was smaller (575).
The procedure used in obtaining a random sampling of the total group in each experimental section was as follows: after the printing of each form was completed, the papers were arranged in order B1, B2, B3 . . . B11, B1, B2, etc. The booklets