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Chapter 9

Chapter 9.doc

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David Goldstein

Chapter 9: Group Tests of Mental Ability Uses of Group-administered Mental Ability Tests 1. first major use is in elementary and secondary school settings 2. usually given in conjunction with a standardized achievement test 3. second major use is for predicting success in college, graduate school and/or professional school 4. two dominant tests used for college selection and placement: SAT and ACT 5. third major use is for job selection or placement in military and business settings 6. testing large numbers of military recruits stimulated the development of the first group-administered mental ability test 7. fourth major use is that these tests are widely used for research in the social/behavioral sciences 8. some of this research relates directly to the nature of mental ability and its relationship to other variables, such as age, income, educational outcomes, or personality variables. Common Characteristics of Group Mental Ability Tests 10. (1) these tests can be administered to a large group 11. any test that can be administered to a large group can also be administered to an individual 12. (2) these tests are nearly always comprised of multiple-choice items and that way are amenable to machine scoring. 13. there are exceptions but the MC format is a significant feature that differentiates between these group and ind. administered tests 14. (3) despite the difference in format the content of tests is very similar 15. however, there are two exceptions to this generalization (1) group tests usually do not include items measuring short-term memory (2) usually do not include manipulative items involving blocks, puzzles and so on 16. (4) there is a fixed time limit and fixed number of items for these tests 17. recall the start and stop rules of the ind. tests 18. Administration times for group tests have a bimodal distribution with many at 45-60 min and others at 2.5-3 hours. 19. (5) usually yield a total score plus several subscores, for example verbal and nonverbal 20. (6) the research base for norming, equating, determining reliability, and so on is very large, usually much large than for ind. tests 21. the norm group for a grp test may involve more than 200,000 or even a million cases 22. (7) principal purpose: prediction 23. an ancillary purpose for many of these tests is to aid in placement within education or job settings in order to maximize success, but prediction or selection remains the primary purpose. Mental Ability Tests in School Testing Programs 24. three major entries in this category (1) Otis-Lennon School Ability Test (2) Test of Cognitive Skills (3) Cognitive Abilities Test 25. one of the special features of all these tests is their multilevel structure 26. a multilevel test structure accommodates ind. differences by having different levels of the test for different ages or grades. The various levels are then linked statistically to allow for continuous score scales throughout the range covered by the test. Otis - Lennon School Ability Test 27. was created as a group-administered form of the Binet- type test 28. OLS AT8 designed to measure those verbal, quantitative and figural reasoning skills that are most closely related to academic achievement. 29. OLS AT8 finds it primary use in school testing programs and is jointly normed with the Stanford Achievement Test, 10th edition30. Structure is similar, though not identical, across the seven levels. 31. An examinee takes one of these levels and the level depends on grade, age and/or level of ability 32. The multilevel arrangement approximates the use of stop and start rules for individually administered tests. 33. OLSAT8 yields a total score based on all the items at a given level (60-72 items); verbal and nonverbal subscores, based on 30-36 items per area at each level; and cluster scores. The clusters include verbal comprehension and verbal reasoning within the verbal area; pictorial reasoning, figural reasoning and quantitative reasoning within the nonverbal area. 34. There is further subdivision of items within the clusters. 35. Provision of a number of different scores is a recent development as before there was only a single global score. 36. The OLSAT8 adopts Vernons hierarchical model of intelligence as a framework for test development. 37. The manual notes that OLSAT8 attempts to measure only the v:ed portion of the model. 38. The test yields raw total, verbal and nonverbal scores which are then converted to scaled scores which are then converted to the School Ability Index (SAI). 39. The SAI is a standard score with M=100 and SD=16. 40. SAIs are determined separately for age groups in three-month intervals from ages 15-19. 41. SAIs can convert to percentile ranks and stanines, either by age group or grade and NCEs can be derived from the percentile ranks. 42. Cluster scores are converted to a simple three-category scale: below average, average, above average corresponding to stanines 1-3, 4-6, 7-9. 43. OLSAT performance also enters the report in another way. The report incorporates Anticipated Achievement Comparisons (AACs). 44. OLSAT8 is used to predict performance on the Stanford tests and then predicted performance is compared with actual performance. 45. The column labeled AAC, t
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