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NASP Home NASP Publications School Psychology Review (SPR) Volume 31 Issue 4 (2002) An Investigation of Situational Bias:...
Volume 31, Issue 4 (2002)

An Investigation of Situational Bias: Conspicuous and Covert Timing During Curriculum-Based Measurement of Mathematics Across African-American and Caucasian Students

pp. 529—539

Abstract. This study evaluated situational bias that could be associated with curriculum-based measurement (CBM). Situational bias occurs when testing situations,conditions, or contexts differentially affect the performance of individuals from diverse groups. During CBM, students are timed (e.g., students are told to begin and a stopwatch is started) while responding. Researchers have suggested that African Americans may have different concepts of time, and therefore may respond differently when being timed. In the current study, the mathematical responding of 79 African American and Caucasian general education, eighth-grade students was compared under covertly timed and conspicuously timed CBM conditions.Results showed that students’ accuracy levels increased under the conspicuous timing conditions, but there was no interaction between timing condition and ethnicity for digits correct per minute, digits incorrect per minute, or accuracy.These results suggest that timing procedures used during CBM do not introduce situational bias.

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