Building Your School’s Test Norms:Benchmark Testing Service

Building Your School’s Test Norms:Benchmark Testing Service

From Memberanda, Spring 2012

Country School in Maryland recently took advantage of an The Enrollment Management Association service designed primarily for new member schools: benchmark testing. Benchmark testing helps schools that have never used the SSAT begin to compile local norms against which to "benchmark" new applicants and currently enrolled students. It is particularly useful for schools, which begin in early grades, where students may not have been exposed to standardized admission testing. Glenelg plans to test a single grade annually (in this case their eighth grade) for internal comparison purposes. They are also considering using the results to aid with Glenelg’s merit scholarship program.

Glenelg’s Director of Admission, Karen Wootton, emphasized: "Using the means for SSAT and national standards will help us compare classes from one year to the next. I believe we will plan to do an analysis of the 8th grade SSAT results vs. student performance in their 9th grade year next spring, and to explore the validity of using SSAT scores as a predictor of success in our program. I think it will also help with future SAT preparation. We are seriously looking at doing benchmark tests for our 5th, 6th, and/or 7th grades later this spring."

The Enrollment Management Association Director of Outreach Michael Horsey made a presentation to Glenelg’s eighth grade parents, explaining the SSAT and how to interpret scores. Wootton pointed out that the presentation "was well received by our parents and administrators. I hope to have the opportunity to have Michael on campus again in the future, perhaps for a presentation to our teachers, once we have more benchmarking accomplished!"

 

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