Correcting Fallacies About Educational and Psychological Testing

Pages: 287
Item #: 4318046
ISBN: 978-1-4338-0392-5
List Price: $19.95
Member/Affiliate Price: $19.95
Copyright: 2009
Format: Hardcover
Availability: In Stock
FREE Shipping

For individuals in the U.S. & U.S. territories


Standardized testing is used for diagnosis, selection, and achievement measurement by individuals in many fields, including psychology, education, employment, and professional credentialing. Its benefits are numerous, substantial, and scientifically proven. However, these benefits are not well articulated or well publicized.

In their technical communications, measurement specialists are generally positive about the worth of standardized testing. Meanwhile, those who engage public debate, such as journalists and certain special interest groups, tend to be less scientifically informed and more negative about the value of testing. The contributors to this volume contend that most criticisms ignore readily accessible scientific evidence and have the unfortunate effect of discrediting the entire testing enterprise.

Standardized testing bears the twin burden of controversy and complexity and is difficult for many to understand either dispassionately or technically. In response to this reality, Richard P. Phelps and a team of well-noted measurement specialists present this book as a platform where they:

  • describe the current state of public debate about testing across fields
  • explain and refute the primary criticisms of testing
  • acknowledge the limitations and undesirable consequences of testing
  • provide suggestions for improving testing practices
  • present a vigorous defense of testing and practical vision for its promise and future

Those who are charged with translating the science of testing into public information and policy—including administrators, social scientists, test publishers, professors, and journalists who specialize in education and psychology—should find a wealth of usable information here with which to balance the debate.

Table of Contents


Thomas Oakland

Richard P. Phelps

  1. Logical Fallacies Used to Dismiss the Evidence on Intelligence Testing
    Linda S. Gottfredson

  2. Psychological Diagnostic Testing: Addressing Challenges in Clinical Applications of Testing
    Janet F. Carlson and Kurt F. Geisinger

  3. Educational Achievement Testing: Critiques and Rebuttals
    Richard P. Phelps

  4. College Admission Testing: Myths and Realities in an Age of Admissions Hype
    Wayne J. Camara

  5. Criticisms of Employment Testing: A Commentary
    Ernest H. O'Boyle Jr. and Michael A. McDaniel

  6. Mission—Protect the Public: Licensure and Certification Testing in the 21st Century
    Stephen G. Sireci and Ronald K. Hambleton

  7. Mistaken Impressions of Large-Scale Cognitive Diagnostic Testing
    Jacqueline P. Leighton

  8. Summary and Discussion
    Richard P. Phelps and Linda S. Gottfredson


Author Index

Subject Index

About the Editor

Editor Bio
Richard P. Phelps, PhD grew up in St. Louis, Missouri a few blocks from Route 66 and the Frisco Route main line. He received degrees from Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri; University of Indiana, Bloomington; and Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, as well as a PhD from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. He taught secondary school mathematics in Burkina Faso, West Africa; worked at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development in Paris, France; the U.S. General Accounting Office, Washington, DC; Westat, Rockville, Maryland; and the Indiana Department of Education, Indianapolis. Dr. Phelps is author or editor of four books, several statistical compendia, and dozens of articles in scholarly journals.