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Validity Evidence to Support the Revision of a Licensure Assessment for Government and Political Science: A Job-Analytic Approach

Swiggett, Wanda D.; Tannenbaum, Richard J.; Wagner, Edward; Wolcott, David B.
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Memorandum
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Job Analysis, Licensure, Certification, Government/Political Science, Validity


A job analysis was conducted to define knowledge/skills important for entry-level government and political science teachers. The results will be used to guide the development of new test content specifications for the Praxis™ Government/Political Science assessment. A draft domain was constructed from existing test specifications, content standards from user states, major textbooks in political science, and scholarly publications in major journals. A national advisory committee (NAC) of government and political science teachers and college faculty reviewed and modified the draft domain to reflect the knowledge/skills they believed were important for safe and effective practice and needed at time of entry into the profession. The revised domain consisted of 69 statements clustered within seven major categories: United States Constitution; Federal, State, and Local Institutions; Civil Rights: Landmark Court Decisions; United States Politics; Comparative Politics: Government, Ideologies, and Public Policies; International Relations; Teaching and Pedagogy in Political Science. Survey responses of 451 government and political science educators provided independent evidence of the importance of the domain. Respondents judged each knowledge/skill statement on a scale ranging from 1 (not at all important) to 5 (extremely important); 62 knowledge/skill statements had mean ratings above 3.50 in the aggregate sample as well as in subgroups containing more than 30 respondents. These results indicate that 62 statements may be considered appropriate for guiding the development of new test content specifications for the Praxis Government/Political Science assessment.

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