Achievement Tests

November 2005

While we welcome the move of the high stakes achievement tests to May because it provides students more learning time in the classrooms, we are concerned that the pressures of returning scores to districts before the end of the school year may lead to changes in the format of the test.  One concern, in particular, due to the time it takes to score them, is that the short answer and extended response items may be eliminated.  We urge that the format of the Ohio Achievement Tests remain the same for the following reasons:

  • Multiple choice items only assess skill knowledge
  • Short answer and extended response items require that students generate and apply their own knowledge
  • Both are essential to assess student learning
  • Multiple modes of questioning honor diverse student learning styles
  • The Ohio Achievement Tests prepare students and inform educators and parents about progress for success on the Ohio Graduation Test.  Continuity of test format, therefore, is essential

We believe that changing the format of the Ohio Achievement Tests will adversely affect the progress Ohio has made to make assessment more responsible to students, parents, and Ohio’s citizens.