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Technology for Large-Scale Assessment CBT

Bennett, Randy Elliot
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Memorandum
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Automated Scoring, Computer-Based Testing (CBT), Computer Assisted Testing, Online Assessment, Simulation, Technology, Large-Scale Assessment


In this paper, the recent evolution of technology for large-scale educational assessment is reviewed. The review is structured around a conceptual framework comprising 3 generations of tests: (a) infrastructure building, (b) qualitative change and efficiency improvement, and (c) reinvention. Examples that illustrate key characteristics of each generation are given. These examples suggest that a 1st generation of electronic tests is in place, and that next-generation tests designed to change what is being assessed and improve efficiency are beginning to emerge. Finally, although operational 3rd-generation tests do not exist, some characteristics of these envisioned assessments have appeared in instructional products and national studies.

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