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Testing Student Learning, Evaluating Teaching Effectiveness
by Williamson M. Evers And Herbert J. Walberg
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From the Publisher
More than ever, parents want to know how their children are achieving and how their childrens school ranks compared to others. And even though education experts and some testing experts may disagree, Congress, state legislators, and citizens are increasingly insistent that objective testing and accountability are needed to measure the results of teaching. This book takes a hard look at the professional, technical, and public policy issues surrounding student achievement and teacher effectivenessthe controversial issues that often divide educators from parents and their elected representatives. The book shows how defective tests and standards and a lack of accountability cause American students to fall behind those of other countriesdespite our schools receiving nearly the worlds highest levels of per-student spending. The book takes on common objections to testing, reveals why they are false, and shows how tests can help even in a childs earliest years. The book also presents several specific constructive uses for tests, including diagnosing childrens learning difficulties and procedures for solving them, measuring the impact of curriculum on specific aspects of achievement, and assessing teachers strengths and weaknesses. The book tells whats wrongand rightwith the NAEP Science and Mathematics Tests and the TIMSS Observational Study. And, in two detailed case studies, authors describe how one states accountability system failed whereas another states has worked well. This book ultimately shows that test results can clearly inform educators and students of progress or lack thereof, evaluate the degree to which programs and practices are working, and ultimately play a vital role in improving American schools.
Williamson M. Evers is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution and served as a senior educational adviser to Ambassador Paul Bremer in Iraq. Herbert J. Walberg is a distinguished visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution and a member of its Koret K12 Task Force.
Contributors: George K. Cunningham, Williamson M. Evers, Jack M. Fletcher, Barbara R. Foorman, David J. Francis, Sandy Kress, William A. Mehrens, Stan Metzenberg, Richard P. Phelps, Alan R. Siegel, Brian Stecher, Herbert J. Walberg, Darvin M. Winick
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