High stakes testing is a major focus of time and concern in the world of education today. As part of our two-year study we looked to see what was being tested, and the methods by which this testing is done. While most testing is not civics centered, we did manage to find some civics-related sample test questions among the mostly social studies examples below.
This is the only National test we could find that deals with Civics and Government topics. (Note: On November 22, 2006, the Christian Science Monitor published this article on the effort to revise the national citizenship test.) The government has put up this page with links to materials for individuals wanting to prepare for the naturalization test.
A non-government site also offers test prep and sample questions:
- California tests for Social Studies Teachers
Here are links to sample questions from certification tests for California elementary (multiple subject) and secondary (single subject) teachers:
STAR (Standardized Testing And Reporting) tests are required for all California students. The linked site contains sample questions from the Department of Education.
Bloom’s taxonomy categorizes questions commonly found in educational settings by levels of abstraction. Most of the questions on the tests linked to above fall into the lower levels of the taxonomy. It would be nice to see questions testing more complex skills.
- On September 13, 2007, educator Jonathan Kozol published a withering critique of the “mania of obsessive testing” embodied in the No Child Left Behind Act of 2002.