• Validating inferences from a standards-based fifth grade mathematics assessment

      D'Agostino, Jerome V.; Stoker, Ginger Lynn (The University of Arizona., 2001)
      The purpose of this study was to investigate the construct validity of the performance levels and their associated descriptors for a state standards-based fifth grade mathematics assessment. Using item responses from 65,291 students, who took the test during the Spring 2000 semester, the study seeks to evaluate the degree to which the descriptions of the performance levels constructed for a state standards-based assessment accurately represent what students at each level know. This was done through four separate, but related, analyses: (1) mapping items to performance level descriptions, (2) assessing the fit of the items to an IRT model, (3) assessing correspondence between items and performance level descriptors, and (4) assessing fit of student responses to the expected response pattern. Results of the analyses show that the performance level descriptions do not provide completely valid portrayals of what students know and are able to do.