Test Validity: Assessment
Creating a tool that will help determine learners’ progress is crucial. The specified task becomes all the more important in the areas that require the ability to correlate the information in books with the phenomena that they can observe themselves. Herein lies the importance of quizzes; they shed light on learners’ understanding of the subject matter. The suggested geography quiz (see Appendix A) can be regarded as a rather good, although it could use a better thematic flow.
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The questions of the test reflect the key content that is covered over the fifth grade in Geography. For instance, the questions provided in the quiz allow determining the learners’ knowledge of the concepts associated with tectonics, weathering, and mountain-forming processes. The specified knowledge can be deemed as the key information that students must acquire during their fifth year in Geography studies (Florida Department of Education, 2016). The specified topics align with the standards set for 5th-grade students in Earth Sciences by the state of Georgia (“Grade 5 – Science Georgia Standards of Excellence (GSE),” 2015).
Although the assignment implies answering multiple-choice questions, it also encourages them to think. Particularly, the test invites learners to consider the effects that specific processes have on the Earth and, thus, connect certain information to provide the correct answer. For example, the question regarding the list of factors contributing to erosion will require analytical skills.
Consistency with Assignments
The quiz (see Appendix A) aligns with the essential information that students were provided during classes. None of the questions contains any data that was omitted or not covered during classes. Therefore, the task can be deemed as fully consistent with the assignments that students completed.
It could be argued, however, that the order in which the questions are represented does not fully coincide with the one in which the information was provided during the course. However, the identified change was made deliberately to determine whether learners can deploy their analytical and critical thinking skills. Thus, the quiz can be regarded as aligning with the curriculum yet, at the same time, carries the individual characteristics that challenge learners.
Reliability and Objectivity
The quiz contains only the information that was represented during the course. Furthermore, it includes solely the data that did not require any independent research from students. Therefore, it can be regarded as fully objective. Since the tool provides a clear and accurate way of determining the correctness of students’ answers, it can also be defined as reliable. Indeed, with each multiple-choice set of opinions containing only one correct answer and no ambiguity in it, the tool provides an objective way of assessing students’ knowledge and skills (Attali & Arieli-Attal, 2015).
None of the tasks contains any elements that can be misinterpreted by students from diverse backgrounds. The test does not have any ambiguities or unknown concepts that would make it impossible for learners from multicultural backgrounds to pass them. Although the questions that are represented in the test are not a complete copy of the textbook definitions of the required phenomena and concepts, they are simple and easy to understand.
Economy and Efficiency
The test is very easy to construct. Moreover, it is just as easy to apply to any school setting. To use it in class, one will have to print it out and hand copies to students. After a teacher explains the goal and theme of the assessment, students will circle the correct answer using pens or pencils (Virtanen et al., 2017).
The test can be used several times if taken on a computer. Moreover, the concept of the test can be reused successfully for other fifth-graders. Therefore, it can be considered a legitimate testing method.
Although being admittedly short, the test can be used to inform decisions made by teachers. For instance, problems in students’ understanding of particular concepts or processes, such as weathering or the continental drift, can be identified and addressed respectively. Therefore, the assessment should be viewed as a legitimate tool for evaluating learners’ progress (Mortimore, 2014).
Based on the characteristics provided above, the assessment can be regarded as valid. Its results inform the further choice of teaching strategies and show what areas require improvements. Moreover, it helps view learners’ progress from an objective perspective. Thus, the validity of the test is high.
Improving the Validity: Suggestions
To increase the validity of the assessment, one may have to consider including clarifications and definitions in it. For example, ESL students may have difficulties with certain terms and concepts (Markus & Borsboom, 2013). Thus, a shortlist of definitions or simpler wording may be regarded as a necessary addition to the assessment instructions.
Attali, Y., & Arieli-Attali, M. (2015). Gamification in assessment: Do points affect test performance? Computers & Education, 83, 57-63.
Florida Department of Education. (2016). Social studies. Web.
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Grade 5 – Science Georgia Standards of Excellence (GSE). (2015). Web.
Markus, K. A., & Borsboom, D. (2013). Frontiers of test validity theory: Measurement, causation, and meaning. New York, NY: Routledge.
Mortimore, P. (2014). The road to improvement. New York, NY: Routledge.
Virtanen, T. E., Pakarinen, E., Lerkkanen, M. K., Poikkeus, A. M., Siekkinen, M., & Nurmi, J. E. (2017). A validation study of classroom assessment scoring system–secondary in the Finnish school context. The Journal of Early Adolescence, 1(1), 0272431617699944.
Appendix A: Test
- How many plates does the Earth have?
- How do the earth plates behave?
- They are still
- They move counterclockwise
- They move in different directions
- What factors lead to erosion?
- The amount and intensity of rainfall
- Changes in temperature;
- Physical characteristics of soil;
- All of the above;
- None of the above
- How is the process of sediment forming in a specific location called?
- What part of the Earth is the hottest?
- What element do the inner and outer cores of the Earth consist of for the most part?
- How are volcanoes formed?
- They occur as a result of the movement of the Earth’s plates;
- They are created due to the climate change;
- They are created artificially
- What is the theory stating that the continents of the Erath move is called?
- The tectonic rift
- The tectonic drift
- The continental drift
- Which one of the variants below is not a type of a mountain?
- Folded mountain
- Folding mountain
- Fault-block mountain
- How are the physical features of the surface of the earth called?
- How many plates does the Earth have?