How Should Test Results Be Used? Achievement tests can be used for making many kinds of decisions about education, as suggested by the following list of 16 applications of test results.
Six traditional functions: Diagnosing individual learners' strengths and weaknesses Designing learning methods suited to individuals' aptitudes Diagnosing a group's strengths and weaknesses Designing instruction that corrects a group's shortcomings Assigning students marks or grades Predicting students' future performance Five specified No-Child-Left-Behind functions: Distinguishing between good schools and bad schools Rewarding successful schools and punishing failing ones Transferring students from failing schools to successful ones Informing people of students' achievement-test performance Providing tutors for students whose test-scores have been unsatisfac-
tory An increasingly popular state-mandated function: Determining students' promotion and graduation Four frequently affiliated functions: Controlling the curriculum Evaluating school personnel Motivating school personnel and students Improving instruction The three aims of Chapter 5 are to describe each of the above func-
tions, to inspect the role each plays in typical high-stakes-testing pro-
grams, and to illustrate types of collateral damage that may be associated with such functions.