Revolution Lullabye

May 1, 2009

Veal and Hudson, Direct and Indirect Measures for Large-Scale Evaluation of Writing

Veal, L. Ramon and Sally Ann Hudson. “Direct and Indirect Measures for Large-Scale Evaluation of Writing.” Research in the Teaching of English. 17 (1983): 290-296. In Assessing Writing. Eds. Huot and O’Neill. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2009. 13-18.

Using data collected from over 2400 students attending 24 geographically, ethnically, and culturally diverse Georgia high schools, Veal and Hudson argue that holistically-scored essays allow for the best balance of validity, reliability, and cost-effectiveness in writing assessments. The students took different kinds of national achievement tests which scored their essays using holistic, analytic, primary-trait, or mechanics-based assessments, and the researchers detailed the validity, reliability, and costs associated with the different measures.

Quotable Quotes

“The consideration of the user at this point becomes whether the cost or the face validity of a direct assessment of writing is more critical” (18)

Notable Notes

1983 publication, before portfolios came on the scene, doesn’t address larger questions of ethics or the nature of validity

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