CUNY's Testing Program: Characteristics, Results, and Implications for Policy and Research
This report responds to a request for information about the quality of the tests the City University of New York (CUNY) uses to decide who must take remedial courses and a profile of CUNY freshmen. Roughly 65% of CUNY bachelor's degree students and nearly 90% of associate degree students are required to take remedial courses in reading, writing, or mathematics. CUNY uses three tests to determine whether an incoming freshman requires remedial instruction: (1) the Reading Assessment Test (RAT); (2) the Mathematics Assessment Test (MAT); and (3) the Writing Assessment Test (WAT). These tests are collectively referred to as the Freshman Skills Assessment Test (FSAT). Analyses revealed that the RAT and MAT had adequate score reliabilities, but this was not the case with the WAT. There was some empirical support for the construct validity of the RAT and MAT in their correlation with Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) scores, but the three tests in the FSAT had fairly low criterion-related validity coefficients in that they did not do a good job in predicting first-year grades. There was no evidence of racial or ethnic bias in the FSAT scores. Certain combinations of variables were able to predict first-year grade point averages far more accurately than was possible when the same variables were used individually. If CUNY chooses to continue to devote substantial resources to remediation, rather than raising standards for admissions, the process of determining who is to get remedial instruction should be improved. It is also recommended that CUNY require all students to take the SAT to provide an external, independent, and standardized benchmark of student ability. If CUNY decides to raise admissions standards, it should do so on the basis of high school grade point average and SAT, but the university should monitor the effects of any changes in admissions policy carefully. An appendix contains statistical data from the study. (Contains 5 figures, 15 tables, and 8 references.) (SLD)
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
Other editions - View all
admission standards Assessment Test associate degree students associate students bachelor and associate bachelor degree students bachelor students black and Hispanic College Board Council for Aid Covariates Crosswalk CUNY colleges CUNY students CUNY tests CUNY's testing program cut scores Degree Sought English English English speakers English-language learners essay question first-year GPAs first-year grades Freshman GPA go to CUNY GPA at CUNY grade point average grades at CUNY grading standards high school grades high school graduates higher Hostos incoming freshmen Interquartile Range Item John Jay mean SAT-Total score Model Number of Students pass/fail status passing scores Percentage of Students percentile policies predictive validity R-square Racial/Ethnic Group RAT and MAT RAT score receive remedial instruction relationship Residual Score SAT and FSAT SAT-M scores SAT-V and SAT-M Scholastic Assessment Test score reliability Staten Island Table take the SATs test scores Total Alpha total FSAT scores Total Score Verbal Math Total York City