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Standard Tests And Bias

steve_bank

Diabetic retinopathy and poor eyesight. Typos ...
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Claims have been made that standardized tests like SAT are racially biased.

How is this so?

How can reading comprehension and math be radially biased?

I agree tests can be intentionally biased. As part of past voter suppression tests were required to be allowed to vote. Questions were asked that blacks many of whom did not go to high school could not possibly answer.
 
South Korea has standardized tests for its competitive universities. Racial bias? Obviously.
 
South Korea has standardized tests for its competitive universities. Racial bias? Obviously.

SK is largely mono culture and small.

Despite what others may say, the US is also a monculture. But even if you don't accept that, the argument that standardized tests are bias is bullshit. When the tests are offered to low income people, those who lack wealth but are otherwise talented reveal themselves. Standardized tests are the great equalizer.
 
Standardized tests are the great equalizer.

Given how different US high schools are, and how prevalent grade inflation is, colleges need a way to compare applicants on an equal footing. SATs/ACTs may not be perfect (nothing is) but it is better than going without an objective measure of all students using the same yard stick.

Same goes for professional and graduate school tests such as MCAT. There are huge differences in grading and even what material is covered in ostensibly equivalent courses at different schools so that a common yard stick is again very necessary. That is not to say that MCAT is perfect - for example it should include a math/stats section instead of the behavioral section that is largely politicized.
 
Example of how SAT can be biased rests in the accuracy of the test materials. For example I did well in math and science but failed history because I disagreed with the SAT on History as it is mostly from an inaccurate & WHITE perspective.
 
Example of how SAT can be biased rests in the accuracy of the test materials. For example I did well in math and science but failed history because I disagreed with the SAT on History as it is mostly from an inaccurate & WHITE perspective.

When was history added to the SAT?
 
Claims have been made that standardized tests like SAT are racially biased.

How is this so?

How can reading comprehension and math be radially biased?

I agree tests can be intentionally biased. As part of past voter suppression tests were required to be allowed to vote. Questions were asked that blacks many of whom did not go to high school could not possibly answer.

Whether you agree with it or not, here is a relatively recent article from Forbes that reports on a lawsuit alleging such a bias - https://www.forbes.com/sites/kimelsesser/2019/12/11/lawsuit-claims-sat-and-act-are-biased-heres-what-research-says/?sh=1b066c8e3c42
 
Claims have been made that standardized tests like SAT are racially biased.

How is this so?

How can reading comprehension and math be radially biased?

I agree tests can be intentionally biased. As part of past voter suppression tests were required to be allowed to vote. Questions were asked that blacks many of whom did not go to high school could not possibly answer.

Whether you agree with it or not, here is a relatively recent article from Forbes that reports on a lawsuit alleging such a bias - https://www.forbes.com/sites/kimelsesser/2019/12/11/lawsuit-claims-sat-and-act-are-biased-heres-what-research-says/?sh=1b066c8e3c42

That’s from 2019. In 2020 the U Cal did a lengthy study and determined no bias, that the SAT was predictive of first year achievement, and recommended keeping the tests.
 
Claims have been made that standardized tests like SAT are racially biased.

How is this so?

How can reading comprehension and math be radially biased?

I agree tests can be intentionally biased. As part of past voter suppression tests were required to be allowed to vote. Questions were asked that blacks many of whom did not go to high school could not possibly answer.

Whether you agree with it or not, here is a relatively recent article from Forbes that reports on a lawsuit alleging such a bias - https://www.forbes.com/sites/kimelsesser/2019/12/11/lawsuit-claims-sat-and-act-are-biased-heres-what-research-says/?sh=1b066c8e3c42

That’s from 2019. In 2020 the U Cal did a lengthy study and determined no bias, that the SAT was predictive of first year achievement, and recommended keeping the tests.
The OP asked how - the article provides an answer.

In 2020, U of Chicago found that HS GPA was a better predictor.
 
Example of how SAT can be biased rests in the accuracy of the test materials. For example I did well in math and science but failed history because I disagreed with the SAT on History as it is mostly from an inaccurate & WHITE perspective.

Not to mention that, now that Loren in the other thread brought up Baseball questions, there was at least one or two baseball questions on the SAT in the math portion when I took it. In fact, sports seems to be a very common basis for word problems in math, owing to the fact that numbers feature so heavily in player statistics.

With regards to reading comprehension, similarly, there are vast differences between certain cultural groups of the United States, and various forms of English to comprehend in the first place. English Professors in general tend to be pretty culturally biased when it comes to an idea of which "English" is the correct "English". In fact a lot of the posters posting in this thread seem to have some rather concrete ideas about what constitutes "correct" English which I have tried to disabuse them of on various occasions, and here they are expressing Incredulity that tests could potentially fail to reflect individual ability.

Really, all those tests should be good for is to discern over/under on "has at least the bare minimum of learning ability". "What you know" is a bad proxy for how capable you are of "ability to know". It's easy enough to catch up with an ability to know, but it's hard to continue learning more regardless of what you know if you lack the ability to keep learning.

This is, ultimately, what admissions should be focused on.

I would, were I considering admissions of some sort, be more intent on admitting the student from a shitty highschool with a moderately high SAT score than I would be on admitting a student from a great school with a slightly higher SAT score. This is because one student demonstrates an above average ability to learn, and the other has demonstrated mediocrity, even though the mediocre student still scored higher.

Further, as long as it includes "history of white people as taught by white people", it will continue to transmit such blatant biases as you point out
 
Example of how SAT can be biased rests in the accuracy of the test materials. For example I did well in math and science but failed history because I disagreed with the SAT on History as it is mostly from an inaccurate & WHITE perspective.

When was history added to the SAT?

Ok let me rephrase. The reading section (IIRC) had some materials centered on history. It also tended to use words myself and my homies would never use in our entire lives as well as I've never heard any white people use. This was somewhere between the late 90's early 2000's and based purely on my memory doused with irish whiskey. I'll take my exit.
 
Example of how SAT can be biased rests in the accuracy of the test materials. For example I did well in math and science but failed history because I disagreed with the SAT on History as it is mostly from an inaccurate & WHITE perspective.

When was history added to the SAT?

Ok let me rephrase. The reading section (IIRC) had some materials centered on history. It also tended to use words myself and my homies would never use in our entire lives as well as I've never heard any white people use. This was somewhere between the late 90's early 2000's and based purely on my memory doused with irish whiskey. I'll take my exit.

Shit, it had words and such that I had to figure out as if they were part of a math problem. I remember that myself from 2001. Like some kind of twisted word problem with no actual numbers in it.

I am also now remembering the DLAB test, which I took when I joined the army and hit inprocessing. There was a part of it, a listening section, where there was heavy part-of-speech vocabulary usage. Like "what is the participle in this sentence", which I couldn't even begin to answer on the basis of not knowing what the fuck a "participle" was. Of course if you asked me "which action word is being used to describe a thing rather than being used to describe an action?" I would have gotten it just fine. The test was for seeing how fast someone can "solve" a language, and I can guarantee you, the kid who learned four languages growing up in a diverse backstreet neighborhood will be much more likely to fail that part of the DLAB than a white kid who has a decent education on part-of-speech vocabulary.
 
Ok let me rephrase. The reading section (IIRC) had some materials centered on history. It also tended to use words myself and my homies would never use in our entire lives as well as I've never heard any white people use. This was somewhere between the late 90's early 2000's and based purely on my memory doused with irish whiskey. I'll take my exit.

Shit, it had words and such that I had to figure out as if they were part of a math problem. I remember that myself from 2001. Like some kind of twisted word problem with no actual numbers in it.

What pissed me off is none of those damned words was taught to me in english class. So when they appear in the SAT where said word is crucial to understanding the context I was pissed. Got escorted out of the test area because I simply asked "why yall using new words?".
 
This is just me opining based on life experiences and knowledge...

I think there are different kinds of biases. There's a kind that is related to the structure and content of specific questions (A). And then there's a kind that is related generally to access to education and opportunity (B).

(A) So this type of content-type bias has a lot to do with economics and possibly culture. The usage of particular words can be correlated to particular material things. Economically disadvantaged persons may not have access to those concrete things and therefore have less probability to understand certain questions. Likewise, culturally, there may be words used that are uncommon or non-existent in another culture.

Consider the word "ottoman," for example. I am not claiming the word is on the test or has been, but kids that have families who own furniture sets have a greater chance to be exposed to such things. It's just an example of an entire class of words. Material things.

It's also true that the makers of the SAT are more cognizant of this type of bias than in the past and so actively try to remove this bias. Now. Historically, no. But even historically, there's been a screaming about SATs not being biased in this way...when they clearly were.

(B) The other type of bias is more systemic because it relates to biases elsewhere. So, if a family has a lot of money, they can send their kids to SAT prep or buy prep books and tutors. The kids have more access to better education more often and may be in summer programs of enrichment. They have more opportunity to learn critical thinking skills, possibly to even take community college courses while in high school because the family has a car and money to invest in such thing with no consequence. They will perform better at the SAT because they have a better education and because they have a lot more familiarity with how the test tests them. They have a better preparation in part due to economics.
 
I'm not too concerned about it though. Many black people do just fine with or without SAT and other tests. Some even manage to succeed without graduating Highschool (said while whisking dust off my shoulder). The efforts made towards inclusion have me slightly at ease. I mean look, even Derec gets it, he includes my people in almost all of his posts. Anyhow, anyone looking at the bigger picture as far as statistics go can see a gradual improvement in Black SAT scores VS White. Overall White SAT scores have neither increased nor decreased over the same amount of time that Black SAT scores have been on the increase. Which in my opinion shows black people are working on it while Asians are kicking yall asses for just doing the bare minumum VIA "white privilege". If I was white I'd want to work on doing away with privilege cause it's clearly making yall dumber (look at your recent choices in political leadership vs back in the "good ole days"). Yall had some truly educated folk (despite them being slave-owning cock buffers).
 
That’s from 2019. In 2020 the U Cal did a lengthy study and determined no bias, that the SAT was predictive of first year achievement, and recommended keeping the tests.
The OP asked how - the article provides an answer.

In 2020, U of Chicago found that HS GPA was a better predictor.

And using both GPA and SAT is an even better predictor. Why limit yourself to just one when both work together to add relevant information to help determine likelihood of successful completion of a program?

https://www.jamesgmartin.center/2020/02/gpa-or-sat-two-measures-are-better-than-one/
 
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