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Teaching to the Test: A Controversial Issue in Quantitative Measurement

Author(s): Jennifer L. Styron | Ronald A. Styron

Journal: Journal of Systemics, Cybernetics and Informatics
ISSN 1690-4532

Volume: 10;
Issue: 5;
Start page: 22;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: Standardized Tests | Testing | Student Achievement | Pedagogical Practice

discussion of the pros and cons of focusing curricular and pedagogical decisions primarily on mastery of those skills and concepts measured by standardized tests. This paper presents scholarly discourse based on testing systems and school accountability, along with a presentation of the advantages and disadvantages of what is commonly referred to as 'teaching to the test.' The authors of this document found research studies to be inconclusive with no clear indication of whether or not there is an advantage or disadvantage to the practice of teaching to the test. But most notably, the actual issue connected to this debate may be the lack of understanding of item-teaching and curricular teaching. In the mind of many educators, item teaching, curriculum teaching and teaching to the test are synonymous.
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