The Criterion Referenced Competency Test Essay

1797 words - 7 pages

Criterion Referenced Tests have been around as late as the 1970's. The creation of the Criterion Referenced Test helped establish specific standards. It was created in order to establish certain information and learning that is necessary to continue the next steps in a child's education. With Criterion Referenced Tests, students learning is copared to the criteria or standards, not to other students. These types of assessments consist of multiple choice items that match the curriculum, or at least suppose to match the curriculum. The issue at hand is whether or not the CRCT assessment is an effective assessment program to use at all. According to FairTest, The National Center for Fair and Open Testing, “some CRT's, such as many state tests, are not based on a specific curriculum, but on a more general idea of what students might be taught (FairTest, 2007). The Georgia Department of Education has claimed that the CRCT assessment measures how well a student has acquired the knowledge and skills covered by the curriculum at his or her grade level. This End-of-the-Year assessment tool is not relevant to me due to the fact that I teach in Alabama, but the criteria that goes along with effective assessments such as validity, reliability, norming information, Standard Error of Measurement (SEM), etc. are all components that are used throughout American Schools in preparing and analyzing assessments properly. This research paper will discuss the components of the CRCT assessment and whether or not this program is effective.

Is the CRCT an effective assessment?
The Criterion Referenced Competency Test, also known as the CRCT, was created in 2000 in which all students, grades one through eighth, are required to take. The content areas that are covered in this particular assessment are reading, English/Language arts, and mathematics. Students in grades three through eighth are tested in the areas of science and social studies as well. This assessment program was created in order to measure what skills the students have required and whether or not they mastered those skills. CRCT also measures the strength and weaknesses of all student achievement and gives an idea of the quality of instruction throughout the state of Georgia. Therefore, it has been common to define reliability for a criterion-referenced test as the extent to which performance classifications are consistent over parellel-form administrations (Hambleton, 2009). With criterion-referenced tests, the focus of validity investigations is on (1) the match between the content of the test items and the knowledge or skills that they are intended to measure, and (2) the match between the collection of test items and what they measure and the domain of content that the tests are expected to measure (Hambleton, 2009). The match between what type of content is on the test to what is to be assessed is known as “content validity evidence”. Although this seemed to have worked...

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