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Examining the Validity and Fairness of a State Standards-based Assessment of English-language Arts for Deaf or Hard of Hearing Students

Affiliations

  • Educational Testing Service Princeton, NJ

Abstract


This study examines the appropriateness of a large-scale state standards-based English- Language Arts (ELA) assessment for students who are deaf or hard of hearing by comparing the internal test structures for these students to students without disabilities. The Grade 4 and 8 ELA assessments were analyzed via a series of parcel-level exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses, where both groups were further split based on English language learner (ELL) status. Differential item functioning (DIF) analyses were also conducted for these groups of students, and where sample sizes were sufficient, the groups were additionally split based on test accommodation status. Results showed similar factor structures across the groups of students studied and minimal DIF, which could be interpreted as lending support for aggregating scores for Annual Yearly Progress (AYP) purposes from students who are deaf or hard of hearing.

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