Doing Justice to Fairness

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Doing Justice to Fairness

Chapter 5

Gregory Camilli and Paul E. Newton

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Title information


Test fairness, which had a late arrival on the assessment scene, has been closely linked to the earlier concept of test validity. However, among cognitive, social, and behavioral science professionals and the general public, the concept of test validity has been continuously debated since the 1950s. As a result, test fairness does not have a clear or generally agreed-upon fit within the topic of validity. The Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing (American Educational Research Association, American Psychological Association, & National Council on Measurement in Education, 2014) provides a useful starting point for examining fairness and its relationship to validity. However, the relationship of fairness and justice in assessment is a topic that extends well beyond the Standards. The goal of this chapter is to argue for a pluralistic and interdisciplinary approach to fairness and justice in order to promote more useful conversations about the social context of assessment. The authors illustrate how communication about fairness and justice can be sharpened with legal and philosophical illustrations.

Keywords: test fairness justice; validity; Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing; educational measurement


Publisher: American Educational Research Association
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