Smart testing improves quality, writes Mark Kleiman of The Reality-Based Community. He cites W. Edwards Deming’s work on statistical quality assurance, which continuously “feeds back information about processes and their outcomes to operators so the processes can be changed in real time.” In education, this would mean:
– Selecting a sample of students for high-quality, expensive testing rather than settling for the level of observation we can afford to do on every student.
– Using information about the whole range of performance rather than fixating on an arbitrary cutoff.
– Taking measurements all through the school year, not just at the end, and getting the results back to the teachers promptly.
Via Megan McCardle.