The validity and reliability of tests constructed by Seychellois teachers

Year: 1996

Author: Godfrey, John, Valentin, Justin

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Seychellois teachers seldom are trained in test construction. Yet, the use of teacher-made tests for assessing students are common occurrences in schools in the Seychelles. This study examines the quality of tests constructed by Seychellois teachers without measurement and testing knowledge.

A sample of tests constructed by Primary 5A mathematics teachers in the Seychelles is analysed. The teachers who submitted the tests have not completed a course in measurement and testing. The purpose of the study is to ascertain whether the tests are sufficiently valid and reliable to make decisions about student learning.

The results obtained indicate that the test results have high internal reliability. However the tests are low in content-related validity. They also have a low percentage of effective items as judged by traditional norm-referenced item analysis techniques.

Recommendations are made to the Department of Education in the Seychelles to assist teachers in test construction and to include a measurement course in pre-service teacher training. It is also recommended that in-service teachers lessen their dependence on tests to measure student performance and that other assessment instruments be developed and implemented.