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A test or exam is an educational test meant to measure the knowledge, skill, ability, aptitude, mental aptitude, emotional aptitude, logical skills, or sociability of a test taker. There are numerous ways by which we can evaluate our knowledge, but the most common types include IQ tests, GRE tests, personality tests, and intelligence tests. Although each type has its own specific purposes and features, there are some similarities among all of these types of tests.
All IQ tests and most intelligence tests use at least two types of stimuli for measurement. Typically, they utilize a verbal or non-verbal response such as writing or speaking and a visual/spatial response like pointing or making a hand motion. Typically, these kinds of test measures reasoning and/or memory abilities. Some intelligence tests use only one type of stimuli, while others may combine two or more types of stimuli to calculate IQ scores. The combinations and types used in IQ tests and intelligence tests vary significantly from one type to another.
Verbal and oral tests, on the other hand, involve the interaction between the taker and the assessor. An interviewer collects information from students taking the test and then asks them questions that are specifically designed to categorize them into groups, sub-groups, and so forth. Students taking oral tests are then asked to complete a series of structured questionnaires, and the results are afterwards scored and analyzed. Oral assessments typically measure comprehension, verbal and reading skills, as well as personality traits.
Performance tests, as their name implies, are administered by testing agencies and teachers at different educational institutions and schools. Different versions of these kinds of tests are administered at different times of the day, week, month, or year. In most cases, the entire class or school is administered the test, while other tests cover only a small part of the students in a class or school. Students taking a performance exam are assessed by certain criteria, and they must pass a test in order to qualify for graduation or admission to the educational institution.
Standardized Testing An alternative to the previously mentioned types of exams is standardized testing. Standardized tests may be administered by private or public organizations such as the Educational Testing Service (ETS) in the United States, the Central Intelligence Agency (Crown Insignia) in the United Kingdom, and the National Assessment for English Language Education (NAELE) in Australia. The NAELE tests are administered twice a year, and the CTS and the ACAT exams are usually administered at least once a year. In both cases, standardized testing is used to determine achievement levels in various subject areas.
In the United States, standardized testing has been a key factor in determining how schools should teach. The National Standards sets educational standards for academic performance, and educational tests are the main tool for determining how schools evaluate student performance. Although most people associate standardized tests with school testing, in fact any kind of test that can measure general competence is a testing tool. In the case of standardized tests, the assessment tool refers to the various elements of a test and how they relate to the lesson being taught.