ECE 354 – Week 5 Discussion 1

Explain, in your own words, what standardized testing is and how it is different from achievement testing. Compare and contrast how the different types standardized testing differs from the other forms of assessment discussed throughout this course. Provide specific examples and support your points with information from the course text.

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There are few differences between the different types of standardized tests like screeners and achievement testing, compared to informal assessments like observational assessment or play-based assessments. As defined by Howard & Aitken (2015), standardized tests are tests where, “the same procedures are used every time the test is given, and the results are based on statistical norms.” They go on to explain how when using standardized tests the assessments have many elements in common e.g. the questions are the same for everyone, the materials used for the test are the same, the children are given the same instruction before the assessment, and the assessments are scored in the same way. This differs from informal types of assessment like observation or play-based assessment, Howard & Aitken defines informal assessments as, “observational assessments that are used to inform instructional decisions but that do not produce data for interpretation.” So, where standardized tests can evaluate the performance using scores and comparing those scores with others, informal assessments use observations to evaluate how well a child is doing without any score. This requires that the person doing the

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