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Measuring Up revisits vital issues of equity and assessment through the research efforts and insights of many of the nation's most prominent educators and assessment experts. As its most urgent purpose, the publication aims to sensitize readers to the unfairness and inappropriate uses of testing instruments which under optimal circumstances have the potential to benefit all students. With America fervently espousing both national and state testing, the differential performance by race and social class raises the specter of tests as barriers to life milestones such as promotion, graduation, and college admissions. In response to such punitive testing, the papers included here explore a host of models and practices that are currently being piloted both in America and abroad as educators grapple with the effects the assessment is having on minority and disadvantaged students and school systems. In the process, outcomes of innovative portfolio and authentic assessments are weighed against important standards and principles of validity and consequences. As the various authors probe the gap between African-American and White test scores, they raise important questions of resources, family background and educational opportunity. Beyond their value of their recommendations to educators, their papers help to identify causes of pupil deficiencies in ways that can be addressed by policymakers. To reinforce the emphasis on equity, several authors present a definitive defense of affirmative action as a critical counter-measure to the lack of fairness in school quality, family and social supports, and educational resources.
Dedication. Contributing Authors. Preface. Acknowledgements. 1. Introduction: Issuing the Challenge; A.L. Nettles, M.T. Nettles. 2. Validity Standards and Principles on Equity in Educational Testing And Assessment; R.L. Linn. 3. The Implications of Content Standards and Assessments for the Economically Disadvantaged, Minorities and Women; E.C. Roeber. 4. Finding One's Voice: A Model for More Equitable Assessment; E. Badger. 5. Advances in Portfolio Assessment with Applications to Urban School Populations; M.D. Reckase, C. Welch. 6. Fairness and Equity in Measuring Student Learning Using a Mathematics Performance Assessment: Results from the Quasar Project; S. Lane, E.A. Silver. 7. Improving the Equity and Validity of Assessment-based Information Systems; Z. Aguirre-Muñoz, E.L. Baker. 8. Performance Assessment and Issues of Differential Impact: The British Experience - Lessons for America; G.F. Madaus, et al. 9. The Case for Affirmative Action in Higher Education; W.H. Gray III, et al. 10. Epilogue. Part 1: Tests as Barriers to Access; W.H. Gray III, et al. Part 2: Educational Standards and Alternatives in Educational Reform; E.W. Gordon. Part 3: Merit and Opportunity: Testing and Higher Education at the Vortex; N.S. Cole. Part 4: If You Want Equity, You Need Standards; J. Baratz-Snowden. Part 5: Response to Validity Standards and Principles on Equity (Robert Linn); D.M. Stewart. Part 6: At Risk and Unready? African American Children and Early Childhood Education; A.L. Nettles, et al. Index.