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Placement test/re-test issues

Hello All - As a new subscriber to the ARN listserv, I'd like to pose a
question. I work in a Community College in Washington State where we use an
adaptive computerized instrument for initial placement into reading, English
and Math courses (mandatory placement). As there has always been
considerable "discussion" among the faculty regarding the accuracy or
reliability of our placement test (no matter which one we have used - from
the two major vendors of ATB approved placement tests), what I have found is
that students are being tested by their instructors (primarily at the
developmental levels) again, and sometimes again before being placed into a
class they feel is appropriate, using a variety of assessments (TABE,
RFU,DRP). Since one of the goals of our assessment program is to limit
overtesting or unecessary testing, my question is this:

For those of you in centralized testing centers - Do you feel it is
appropriate for instructors to utilize any number of other test batteries to
"check" the validity of placement for their students, sometimes numerous
times using more than one instrument? Who should decide which instruments
are used and how would that be accomplished?

As I just read the "Test Taker's Bill of Rights" resolution on the NCTE
website, I have numerous concerns for the students who must oftentimes
submit to this extended testing regimen. I look forward to "listening in"
on the discussion in this forum.

Mark Kenney
Mark Kenney
Testing Center
South Puget Sound Community College
2011 Mottman Road SW
Olympia, WA 98512-6292
PHONE (360) 754-7711 ext. 5386
FAX (360) 664-4336
E-MAIL mkenney@spscc.ctc.edu

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