High stakes testing, educational aims and ideals, and responsible assessment

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


School and government officials, system administrators and other policymakers offer a variety of reasons for engaging in high stakes testing: to monitor student performance, to measure teacher and/or school effectiveness, to ensure accountability, etc. Some of these reasons are good; others not. But the best reason - one that is never offered, because it is not true - is that such testing furthers our efforts to realize our considered educational aims and ideals. I argue that while some testing is perfectly legitimate, current high stakes testing practice is largely inimical to the achievement of our most defensible educational ends.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)219-233
Number of pages15
JournalTheory and Research in Education
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 2004


  • FCAT
  • accountability
  • aims
  • arbitrariness
  • high stakes testing
  • ideals
  • judgment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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