Developing More Effective Test-Based Accountability by Improving Validity Under High-Stakes Conditions

Purpose

Research on test-based accountability has documented a variety of distortions of educational practice that can lead to test score inflation. Specifically, this means that gains in scores on the tests used for accountability can be far larger than the actual gains in student learning they are intended to signal. The goal of this project is to: (1) evaluate the limitations of current assessment systems, including the features of tests that are most vulnerable to score inflation and the types of schools and students most affected by such inflation; (2) develop and evaluate new approaches for validating inferences based on scores on tests used for accountability; and (3) design new research-based approaches to assessment to lessen the unwanted side effects of test-based accountability.

Prime PI: Dan Koretz, Harvard University

NYU Sub PI: Jennifer Jennings