Posts tagged "grading the grading"
January 9, 2013
The Regents exam that high school students are most likely to fail will not be scored under a new system designed to curb score inflation.
In recent years, exams across the city received a disproportionate number of 65s, suggesting that teachers might be bumping up the scores of students on the verge of passing, sometimes illicitly. Aiming to reduce incentives to pad scores, the Department of Education last year began rolling out a system in which teachers are not permitted to grade exams taken by students in their school.
This month, all exams for all schools were supposed to be scored under the model. But when the department put out a call for teachers to grade the global history exam, only about 1,000 signed up, officials said. That meant the department was short at least 700 teachers to ensure that all global history exams could be graded on time.
The shortfall means the department’s shift to distributed scoring will be incomplete when students take exams later this month. (more…)
July 11, 2012
Last year, the Evander Childs Campus got a new library, replete with rows of new computers and a mural depicting scholarly pursuits.
The library opened its doors for the first time last month — but not to students. Instead, it housed teachers from other high school campuses, who convened there to try out a new model for grading students’ final exams.
Regents exams, which students must pass to graduate from high school, have been scored by the teachers who administered them since the Regents exam program began in the nineteenth century. But mounting concerns about cheating — spurred on by the finding that students hit the minimum passing score at a disproportionately high rate — have prompted the city and state to make changes to how the exams are graded.
The state’s test security overhaul calls for schools to stop grading their own Regents exams by June 2013. The changes are meant to reduce opportunities and incentives for teachers to inflate their students’ scores, which under state law could factor into teachers’ evaluations in the future. The shift would bring Regents exam grading in line with how most states score high-stakes exams and with New York State’s requirements about elementary and middle schools’ exams.
Buoyed by its own concerns about cheating and softer forms of score inflation, the city has sped that timeline up. In January, a handful of schools tested out a system to ensure that teachers do not grade their own students’ exams.
Department of Education officials expanded that system, known as “distributed scoring,” to more than 160 schools this spring. Most of the schools deployed teachers to centralized locations such as Evander Childs, and teachers from 17 schools tested a system for grading exams online. In total, about 107,000 exams were graded under distributed scoring last month.
Teachers who participated in the pilot gave it mixed reviews. Some said the system made them better graders because they considered only the answers, not the students, when assigning scores. But others said the system of musical graders was complicated, time-consuming, and likely to lead to unfairly deflated scores. And a small number of missing tests highlight the potential cost of logistical mishaps. (more…)