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The Internal Construct Validity of the SAT Across Handicapped Populations SAT

Bennett, Randy Elliot; Kaplan, Bruce A.; Rock, Donald A.
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Report
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Disabilities, Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT), Test Administration, Test Takers, Test Validity, Validity Studies


This study examined the psychometric characteristics of the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) administered under special conditions for nine handicapped groups. Four psychometric characteristics were studied: level of test performance, test reliability, speededness, and extent of unexpected differential item performance. Results of the study showed that visually impaired students and those with physical handicaps achieved mean scores generally comparable to students taking the SAT in national administrations. Learning disabled and hearing impaired students scored lower than their nondisabled peers. Differences between Verbal and Mathematical performance were also comparable to those for the nondisabled reference group in all but the hearing impaired-regular type test and visually impaired-braille test samples. Hearing impaired- regular students scored higher on Mathematical than on Verbal relative to their nondisabled peers, while visually impaired-braille students showed no consistent superiority for Mathematical over Verbal. It is concluded that, with the exception of performance level, the psychometric characteristics of the SAT are generally comparable for the handicapped and nondisabled groups studied. These results lend support to the contention that scores from special administrations are fair and accurate measures of the developed scholastic abilities of handicapped students. Further studies of these scores—in particular, their factor structure and predictive validity—should provide additional information about their meaning for handicapped students. (79pp.)

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