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PSYCH312 Study Guide - Final Guide: Phoneme

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Ernie Mac Kinnon
Study Guide

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Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of employing standardized norm referenced AND
criterion referenced tests in assessing learning problems in children.
Norm referenced tests compare a child’s performance to that of other children the same age and
measures grade levels. These tests compare a student to others in a norm group. For example, a
child’s reading skills would be judged to read as well as an average 9 year old.
-Provides information on how child’s performance compares to others in reference group
to help identify child’s level of reading skills in comparison with other children of the
same age
-Tests are reliable: if given to a student again, the child will likely obtain a score in same
range so gives a reliable diagnosis
-Quick, cheap, easy test to administer for snapshot of whether or not children is meeting
expectations of what they need to learn
-Norm/reference group may not represent current population of interest
oTest may be biased against culturally diverse populations
-Does not show if child has improved when given just a grade level or percentage
compared to other children (can’t measure progress)
oDoesn’t provide enough information about the students learning
-Parents and educators may misinterpret scores when scores indicate that the student is
below norm/grade level
oTeachers may prepare students for taking the test during class time because of the
pressure students feel to attain high marks
-Tests may not access what students are learning in class
-Not all norm referenced tests were normed on the same population (only WISC, WAIS,
Kaufman tests were named on same population) so may have tests there were normed on
different populations
Criterion referenced tests describe performance and measures mastery levels. These tests measure
the student’s abilities in specific skills. For example, a child’s reading skills would be judged
being able to perform certain tasks like reading passages, word finding.
-Teacher can show that student has learned certain specific skills, in terms of mastery
(shows growth)
-Helps determine if there are learning gaps or academic deficits that need to be addressed
that are specific to individuals knowledge/goals
oIf child scored 60% on math test= child knows 60% of math and can adjust
instruction accordingly
-When assessing more complex skills, difficult to determine with one score
-Costs a lot of money, time, effort because tests are specific and time-consuming to
-Unable to compare performance of child to norms: unable to measure how child is
performing against other children
oCan’t tell how much better or worse a child is
Discuss the concept of Working Memory. How is it assessed? What adjustments in remedial
instruction might be taken to assist those with working memory problems? Provide specific
examples for instruction in reading comprehension, spelling OR arithmetic.
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Working memory holds information long enough to use it. An active system of remembering
what has been learned to apply that memory to a complex cognitive task. For example, a student
listening to a math problem, must remember the numbers and what operations to use and write
down the math problem at same time. It plays a vital role in concentration and in following
instructions. Weak working memory skills affect learning in many areas including reading and
Assessment of Working Memory
-Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC-IV) assesses working memory
through digit span, letter-number sequencing, and arithmetic
oDigit span: say numbers backwards and forewords
oLetter number sequencing : string of mixed numbers and letters displayed once,
child then asked to repeat numbers and letters separately in natural order
oArithmetic: Rapidly answer within a time limit orally presented arithmetic
reasoning problems doing required calculations in one’s head
-Automated Working Memory Assessment (AWMA) uses encoding of items and recall
with interruptions to measure working memory. It is a computerized (automated) test that
assesses 4 working memory skills:
oVerbal Short-term memory : tasks include recalling increasing items in lists of
unrelated numbers, words and non words
oVerbal Working memory: Listening recall like remember last word of each
sentence in order, counting recall, recalling increasing items in list of random
numbers backwards
oVisuo-spatial short term memory : recall locations of dots in a matrix, path drawn
in maze and then retrace on blank page, recall series of blocks that were tapped
oVisuo-spatial Working memory: view series of items/pictures then recall location
of shapes that don’t belong, position of object, indicate if same direction
-To assist those with working memory problems:
oRehearsal and repeat: repeating information slows the forgetting process and
helps transfer information to long-term memory. Have students repeat
instructions (what they heard) so they can clarify parts they may have forgotten.
If child is studying for spelling tests, have her repeat the letters to the
words out loud
oOrganize schemas: chunk activities or words into a single category
If child is studying for spelling test, chunk words that start with the same
letter to help probe the word and spelling
oUse prior knowledge: easier to retrieve information that relates to other
oMake information/lectures interactive and meaningful: link information to
something they already know
If child is studying for spelling test with theme on items in the house, ask
her to consider how she feels when seeing those objects in the house so
that she can make a emotional connection to what she’s trying to
When teaching a math lesson, encourage students to volunteer to share
what they learned about division that day (include responses from
students so they remember what they learned)
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