AN ASSESSMENT OF TEACHERS’ KNOWLEDGE OF TEST CONSTRUCTION PROCEDURE IN CHEMISTRY
OBJECTIVE TEST IN SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS
Background of Study
Testing has always been an integral part of the educational system since its inception. The concept (testing) can be viewed as a set of tasks presented to a person, the performance of which depends on the possession of a particular body of knowledge and skill. The emphasis being laid on continuous assessment in Nigeria’s educational system has therefore given a boost to the testing system in our educational institutions. The National Policy on Education (2004) emphasizes the importance of continuous assessment by stating that “Educational Assessment and Evaluation will be liberalized by basing them in whole or in part on continuous assessment of the progress of the individual”. This implies that teachers should assess both the entry and terminal behaviour of the students in the subject being taught as this will reveal the progress made by the individual student during the course. Continuous assessment has been presented as a revolutionary approach to assessment (Yoloye, 1984), (Firth and Macintosh, 1984) and (Ughanadu, 1994). They claim that, continuous assessment is a more valid form of assessment than conventional examination or traditional assessment method. The
superiority of continuous assessment is based on the fact that, continuous assessment can sample a much wider range of skills and abilities inherent in a course of study. Continuous assessment in many respects oers a challenge to both the learner and the teacher of science. A Federal Ministry of Education Handbook (1980) portrays continuous assessment as a method of finding out what the students have gained from the learning experiences with respect to knowledge, thinking, reasoning, character development, industry, etc. Science subjects and chemistry in particular, like many of the educational disciplines, provide unique opportunities for the application of continuous assessment. There are three major areas (components) of any science subject which lend themselves to assessment: cognitive (theoretical) aspects; psychomotor (manipulative) aspects and active (attitude) aspects.