TITLE

Norm-Referenced Testing and Low-Income Blacks

AUTHOR(S)
Castenell Jr., Louis A.; Castenell, Mae E.
PUB. DATE
November 1988
SOURCE
Journal of Counseling & Development;Nov88, Vol. 67 Issue 3, p205
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
The purpose of this article is to highlight biases, that is, learning styles and test bias, involved in testing low-income Blacks with norm-referenced, achievement tests and to offer suggestions to assist counselors in improving their students' test performance.
Two important pieces of research confirm what many observers have suspected for a long time. First, empirical evidence shows that norm-referenced tests are not culturally biased against Blacks as an ethnic group; rather, lower scores of minorities are more closely related to their economic status (Roberts & DeBlassie, 1983). Second, the social psychological characteristics of low-income Black children are uniquely different from other groups, including Black middle-class children, in the areas of cognitive learning styles and transition from concrete to abstract modes of communication. Specifically, Wyche and Wyche's (1984) review of the literature on low-income Black children suggested that (a) low-income Black children exhibit delayed-language skills, (b) low-income Black children use fewer conceptual categories and abstractions and more global descriptors, and (c) the living environments of low-income Black families foster early concrete thinking but do not promote verbal functioning, as do the living environments of middle-class White families.
ACCESSION #
4962098

 

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