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Summarizing Student Achi

evement

Chapter Sixteen
Educational Psychology: Developing Learners
6th edition
Jeanne Ellis Ormrod
Summarizing Student Achievemen
t

 The three most widely used methods for sum


marizing student achievement are:
 Course grades
 Portfolios
 Standardized test scores

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Summarizing the Results of a Singl
e Assessment
 Teachers use scores to summarize how students perf
orm on individual classroom assessments.

 Raw Scores
 This score is based solely on the number or point value
of correctly answered items.
 Advantages
 Easy to calculate

 Easy to understand (on the surface)

 Disadvantage
 Difficult to know exactly what raw scores really mean

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Course Grades: Scores
 Criterion-Referenced Scores
 Scores that specifically indicate what a student knows
or can do
 Determined in relation to student’s achievement on sp

ecific objectives or standards


 May be an either-or score (pass or fail) or indicate a l
evel of competence
 Advantages
 Useful for determining what specific objectives student

s have obtained, what skills have been mastered, and


where specific weaknesses lie

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Course Grades: Scores
 Norm-Referenced Scores
 Scores that indicate how a student’s performance on
an assessment compares with the average performan
ce of peers
 Grade-equivalent scores indicate the grade level of a st
udent to whom his/her performance is most similar.
 Age-equivalent scores indicate the age level of a studen
t to whom his/her performance is most similar.
 Grade- and age-equivalent scores used frequently be
cause they are fairly easy to use
 Do not indicate the typical range of performance for st
udents at a particular grade or age level
 Often used inappropriately
 May encourage people to believe that all students shoul
d be performing at grade level

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Course Grades: Scores

 Percentile Ranks
 Scores that indicate the percentage of peers in the nor
m group getting a raw score less than or equal to a par
ticular student’s raw score
 Good for reporting test results
 May distort actual differences between students
 A ten point difference between percentile ranks implie

s a greater difference in achievement than may actuall


y be present

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Course Grades: Scores
 Standard Scores
 Scores that indicate how far a student’s performance is from the
mean with respect to standard deviation units
 These scores tend to reflect the normal distribution of scores

N Many
u
m
b
e
r Some
o
f
P
e
o
p
l None
e
Low Moderate High
Characteristics Being Measured
Jeanne Ellis Ormrod
Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Course Grades: Scores
 Standard Scores
 The numbers used to derive standard scores are the standard deviat
ion and the mean

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Determining Final Class Grades

 Problems with traditional grading techniques include:


 Lower reliability and validity of individual assessment in
struments may lead to inaccurate grades.
 Different teachers use different criteria to assign grade
s.
 In heterogeneous classes, different students might be
working toward different goals.
 Typical grading practices promote performance goals r
ather than mastery goals.

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Strategies for Ensuring
Accurate Grades
 Taking the job of grading seriously
 Basing grades on achievement
 Basing grades on hard data
 Being selective about the assessments used to deter
mine grades
 Identifying a reasonable grading system and sticking
to it
 Accompanying grades with qualitative information

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Considering Improvement

 Problems exist with basing final grade solely on impr


ovement including:
 Some students come to class already possessing some of th
e knowledge and skills to be tested, leaving little room for im
provement.
 Some students may start out with the lowest possible perfor
mance in order to “beat the system.”

 In order to reward improvement, teachers should:


 Assign greater weight to assessments conducted at the end
of semester
 Consider offering retakes when applicable

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Considering Effort
 Most experts recommend against basing grad
es on effort.
 More skilled and knowledgeable students don’
t need to exert as much effort and may therefo
re be penalized.
 Effort can only be assessed subjectively and is
therefore highly unreliable.

 It’s best to encourage and reward effort in inf


ormal assessments.

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Considering Extra Credit

 Course grades should be based on student’s


performance and achievement in relation to t
he instructional goals and objectives.

 If used, extra-credit work should be available


to all students and relate to the instructional g
oals and objectives.

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Using Portfolios
 A portfolio is a collection of a student’s work compiled
systematically over a lengthy period of time.
 In addition to paper-pencil assignments, it may includ
e photos, videos, or student-created objects.
 Advantages include:
 The ability to capture the complexity of student achievement
 Allowing instruction to be intertwined with assessment
 Encouraging students to reflect on and evaluate their own ac
complishments
 Positively influencing the nature of instruction

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Using Portfolios Effectively

 Consider the specific purpose for which a port


folio will be used
 Involve students in the selection of the conten
ts
 Identify the criteria by which products should
be selected and evaluated
 Ask students to reflect on the products they in
clude in their portfolio

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Types of Standardized Tests

 Achievement tests
 Assess how much students have learned from the thin
gs they have been taught
 Enable comparisons of students from many different pl
aces
 Assist in tracking students’ progress over time
 May help identify the onset of learning difficulties

 Content validity may be an issue

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Types of Standardized Tests

 Scholastic aptitude and intelligence tests


 Assess a general capacity to learn and are us
ed to predict future academic achievement

 Specific aptitude tests


 Predict future ability to succeed in a particular
content domain
 Not used as frequently as in the past

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Types of Standardized Tests

 School readiness tests


 Assess cognitive skills important for success i
n a typical kindergarten or first-grade curriculu
m
 Helpful for looking for specific delays, but scor
es do not correlate with actual school achieve
ment after enrollment

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Selecting and Using
Standardized Tests
 Choose a test that has high validity for your particula
r purpose and high reliability for students similar to y
our own
 Make sure that the test’s norm group is relevant to y
our population
 Take students’ age and development into account
 Make sure students are adequately prepared to take
the test
 When administering the test, follow the directions clo
sely and report any unusual circumstances

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Interpreting Standardized
Test Scores
 Have a clear and justifiable rationale for establishing
cutoffs for acceptable performance
 Compare two standardized test scores only when tho
se scores are derived from the same or equivalent no
rm group(s)
 Never use a single test score to make important deci
sions

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
High-Stakes Testing
and Accountability
 There is considerable pressure on teachers and educ
ational administrators to raise scores on standardized
tests.
 The No Child Left Behind Act mandates that all states
establish challenging academic content standards.
 “Adequately yearly progress” in meeting state-determ
ined standards is required.

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Problems with
High-Stakes Testing
 The tests don’t always reflect important instructional goal
s.
 Teachers spend a great deal of time teaching to the tests
.
 School personnel have disincentives to follow standardiz
ed testing procedures and to assess the progress of low
achievers.
 Different criteria lead to different conclusions abut which
students and schools are performing at high levels.
 Too much emphasis is placed on punishing low-performi
ng schools; not enough is placed on helping those school
s improve.
 Students’ motivation affects their performance on the test
s and consistently low performance affects motivation.

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Potential Solutions to the Problems

 Identify and assess those things that are most import


ant for students to know and do
 Educate the public about what standardized tests can
and cannot do
 Look at alternatives to traditional objective tests such
as authentic assessments
 Advocate for the use of multiple measures in any hig
h-stakes decisions

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.
Taking Student Diversity
into Account
 Remember that assessment instruments can be cultu
rally biased.
 Items can offend or unfairly penalize some students on
the basis of their ethnicity, gender, or SES.
 Teachers should continually be on the lookout for unint
entional bias.
 Language skills and differences affect performance o
n many kinds of assessments.
 The use of portfolios may be more effective at convey
ing the progress and achievements of students with a
variety of disabilities and special needs.

Jeanne Ellis Ormrod


Copyright © 2008 by Pearson Education, Inc.
Educational Psychology: Developing L
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458
earners, sixth edition All rights reserved.