Sunday, March 5, 2017

CURMUDGUCATION: Making Students Pledge Test Security

CURMUDGUCATION: Making Students Pledge Test Security:

Making Students Pledge Test Security

When it comes to the Big Standardized Tests, we know that one thing is important before all else-- not the soundness of the questions or the validity of the test or the value of the scoring or the careful construction of questions that truly measure what they're alleged to measure. No, only one thing matters most--

Protecting the proprietary materials that belong to the test manufacturer.

You may recall that last year there was a tremendous flap over PARCC questions and the leaking thereof. Or the continuing issues with the SAT security, or the complete absence thereof.

This may be in part because test manufacturers hate to be publicly outed for the ridiculously bad nature of their materials. There was the infamous talking pineapple debacle of 2012. Or this year when the actual author of some materials on the BS Test in Texas realized she couldn't answer questions about her own work.

But these incidents are merely embarrassing. The real problem with test security is that when a set of questions become compromised, the test manufacturing company has to make a bunch of new ones, and that costs money.

Bureaucrats and test companies have tried a number of approaches to deal with all this. Pearson got caught spying on student social media and demanding that local administrators punish the students involved in security breaches. And during the PARCC flap, all across the bloggoverse those of us who so much as linked to summaries of the questions were hunted down and slapped.

In Pennsylvania, as in many states, we get "training" for test proctoring that frames the whole gig as 
CURMUDGUCATION: Making Students Pledge Test Security:

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