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SAT Percentile Table

Before presenting information on examples of standardized tests and different methods for scoring those tests, I would like to list some of the terms associated with scores and reliability of standardized tests.  Knowing these terms makes  the issue of testing easier to understand.

Confidence Interval-A range extending one standard error of measurement to either side of the actual test score.
Mean-The average of a set of scores.
Norm-referenced scores-Scores that compare a student's performance with other students' on the same task.
Normal Distribution (normal curve)-The optimal pattern of score distribution.  The performance level of the characteristic being measured is on the x-axis and the number of people scoring at each levels on the y-axis.  A theoretical pattern would have the most people performing at the moderate level and fewer and fewer people scoring at each end.  This is what the graph itself would look like:


Reliability Coefficient (correlation coefficient)-A statistic that measures how reliable a test is.  A reliability coefficient will range from 0 to 1 (with one being perfect reliability and very rare).
Standard Deviation-A statistic that measures the variability of a set of scores.  The smaller the standard deviation, the closer the scores are to each other.
Standard Error of Measurement-The measure of how close a student's score is to what it actually should be (their true score).
True Score-What a person would score if they could be tested with complete accuracy.
Validity Coefficient-A statistic that measures how valid a test is.  A validity coefficient will range from 0 to 1 (the higher the number, the greater the predictive validity of a test).

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