Some critics argue that standardized tests are culturally and socially biased. This paper attempts to answer the commonly asked questions: Is standardized testing the best way to measure intelligence today? What do statistics show? Are they good predictor of intelligence or is it a habit that must need to continue for thesake of people’s jobs? Every year the government spends millions of dollars from the taxpayer’s money; is there enough evidence to continue the support of standardized testing?
What is the History of Standardized Testing?
Soon after a French president mandated that all children should go to school, the classes were loaded with kids with all range of individual differences. Also, there wereforeign children coming to France. Some children seemed not to be learning that much, even when they were in special classes. The problem was that no one had invented a way to identify the differences among the students. The French minister of public education and other government officials worried about that teachers could have a bias perception of the children they work with every day.Teachers perhaps will favor the students with economic difficulties. So the government hired Alfred Binnet (1857-1914) and his team to find a solution to the problem. The Binnet- Simon Scale was the frist IQ test. Binnet developed the concept of “Mental Age” Mental age (MA) An individual’s level of mental development relatives to others example: if a 10 year old scored the same as the average 12 yearold, he had a mental age of 12. Binnet, the creator of the tests will be astonished to find out that the tests he design to identify disabilities are used today to predict school achievement (Myers 2005).
Development of Standardized Testing: Intelligence Tests
Today exist five Intelligence Quotient Tests:
a) The Binnet-Simon Scale
b) The Stanford Binnet
c) The Weschler Scales WAIS(Weschler Adult Intelligence Scale)
d) WISC (Weschler Intelligence Scale for Children)
e) WPPSI (Weschler Preschool/Primary Scales of Intelligence)
(a) The Binnet-Simon Scale: Binnet and his collaborator Theodore Simon elaborated the first intelligence test now known as the Binnet-Simon Scale. Together they developed the concept of “Mental Age” (MA), which is the typical level ofperformance of most children of any chronological given age. Thus, an individual’s level of mental development is relative to others of the same chronological age, for example: the average 10 year old has a mental age of 10 years old. Children with bellow average mental ages, such as 9 years old, who performed at the level of a typical 7 year old, would struggle with schoolwork considered normal forhis age (Myers 2002).
(b) The Stanford-Binnet: Lewis M. Terman university professor at Stanford University found that the ages did not work for children of California so he adapted the original test and created his own version of the Binnet-Simon Scale Intelligence Quotient (IQ). Terman expresses the relationship between “mental age” and “chronological age” as a single number: a “quotient”.Chronological age (CA) refers to the age from birth until the testing time. Later, German psychologist William Stern created the formula we still use today. So, IQ = An individual’s mental age/chronological age times X100. Devised in 1912 by William Stern (IQ = MA/CA x 100).
IQ = ————————X 100
Examples of IQ Computation: Examples of IQComputation a ten year old: scores at the level of the average 12 year old on a given test 12/10 x 100 = 120 (a bright 10 year old) a ten year old: scores at the level of the average 8 year old on a given test 8/10 x 100 = 80 (a below average 10 year old). (c) David Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale – III (WAIS-III)
(d) Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children - IV (WISC-IV) for children between...