Evaluation of the predictive validity of tests of mental ability for classroom performance in elementary grades

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Abstract

Examined the relationship between scores on tests of mental ability and classroom performance in approximately 5,200 British early elementary school children (2nd-4th graders). The predictive validity of tests of mental ability for classroom performance recently has come under question, especially when used to examine members of disadvantaged groups. The few relevant studies that have used grades as their criteria of performance have produced contradictory findings. The present investigation yielded a strong predictive relationship between mental ability scores and classroom performance, irrespective of Ss' socioeconomic status (SES) and, in addition, indicated that the predictions of academic performance derived from standardized tests are not biased against children of lower SES. These findings are used as the basis for discussing possible reasons for inconsistencies in the past research and to suggest the appropriate function of mental ability tests in elementary education. (19 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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