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Addressing Test Anxiety in a High-Stakes Environment
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Addressing Test Anxiety in a High-Stakes Environment
Strategies for Classrooms and Schools



September 2005 | 192 pages | Corwin
In an era of high-stakes testing and accountability, improving exam results is at the top of most teachers' to-do lists.

Test anxiety is prompted by situations in which people feel they are being personally evaluated, resulting in cognitive and physical responses. Cizek and Burg use their considerable experience as assessment experts and former classroom teachers to help teachers both understand what test anxiety is and how they can help their students overcome it.

The use of high-stakes testing has increased throughout the country, and testing results are often linked to consequences for the school, the teacher, and the student. With the growing prevalence in high-stakes tests, the level of test anxiety in both students and teachers has increased as well. If educators do not address test anxiety, it can have devastating effects on their students' test scores, confidence, and motivation to learn. In addition, test anxiety affects test results and the validity of tests. As a result, instructional decisions, promotion or graduation decisions, may be faulty because of test anxiety.

This practical guidebook contains:

- A glossary of assessment and measurement terms

- Suggestions for teachers, administrators, school systems, parents, and students on how to control test anxiety

- Situations where test anxiety can be helpful

- Current research findings on how widespread test anxiety is and which students it is most likely to affect

The authors include practical interventions that address students' behavioural and cognitive needs. They also include practical strategies such as study skills and test-staking skills that can help reduce the effects of test anxiety.

 
Preface
 
About the Authors
 
1. Testing in a High-Stakes Environment
 
2. What Test Anxiety Is...And Isn't
 
3. The Effects of Test Anxiety on Students and Teachers
 
4. The Causes of Test Anxiety
 
5. Measuring Test Anxiety
 
6. Tips and Strategies for Reducing Test Anxiety
 
7. Conclusions and Next Steps
 
Resource A: Glossary
 
Resource B: General Resources
 
Resource C: Resources for Measuring Test Anxiety
 
References
 
Subject Index
 
Author Index

"This fascinating, well-researched book makes a wonderful contribution to the field. It provides helpful information on what test anxiety is and what we can do about it. This topic is as important today than ever due to education reform initiatives across the country."

James Kelleher, Assistant Superintendent
Scituate Public Schools, MA

"The book offers answers to the most important question of all: If test anxiety can hinder our ability to make accurate inferences and good decisions for kids, what can we do to ease students' fears? As it turns out, researchers have answers, and the authors present helpful ideas for all of us-parents, educators, and students themselves."

Linda Wacyk, Trustee
Grand Ledge Board of Education, MT

"This book provides a thorough, yet easy-to-read, nontechnical description of test anxiety. Most important, it provides specific actions that can be taken by teachers, parents, and students themselves to reduce test anxiety. In this era of high-stakes testing, this book is a must-read for all concerned parents and educators."

William J. Brosnan, Superintendent
Northport-East Northport Schools, NY

"Cizek and Burg explore the construct of test anxiety . . . (with a) balance between the scholarly research base and the practical suggestions offered. These include strategies of how teachers can head off test anxiety, and how students can reduce test anxiety levels. This book should be required reading for all teachers, counselors, school psychologists, school principcals, district administrators and policy makers."

Mary E. Yakimowski-Srebnick, Director of Assessments
Council of Chief State School Officers

"Educators can use many of the techniques in their classrooms, including assessment and relaxation techniques before testing, preparation of the setting, study skills, and student preparation for testing day."

Childhood Education Magazine, Summer 2006

Sample Materials & Chapters

Preface

Chapter 1: Testing in a High-Stakes Environment


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