Improving the Information Value of Performance Items in Large Scale Assessments

The authors of this paper first provide a summary overview of what is already known and what is needed to learn about item types for future NAEP assessments. Essentially, the question addressed here is: Do constructed-response items provide more information about what students are capable of doing than what multiple-choice items alone provide, and if so, what types of skills are tapped by the constructed-response items that are not measured by multiple-choice items? A fresh examination of the relationships between multiple-choice and constructed-response items is needed, according to the authors. The authors propose a set of studies that would provide needed information about the value added of performance items in mixed-format assessments such as NAEP.