Standardized Testing: Policy Implications For Employment In Education

Date of Award




Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


Educational Administration


Congress enacted the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to address the problem of discrimination. Although the Act prohibits racial discrimination, the major thrust of the statute is Title VII which proscribes discriminatory employment practices on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin except where there is a job-related necessity which is reasonable and necessary to the normal operation of that particular business. As overt discrimination is the central theme of Title VII, the statute also proscribes practices that are fair in form but discriminatory in operation. Within the purview of Title VII, legislation has specifically addressed testing practices. The subsequent non-uniformity of lower court interpretations of Title VII has, nevertheless, clearly demonstrated a lack of consistency in the standards applied in lower court case law. In consideration of these various rulings and of recent legislation and litigation, the need for standardized criteria for interpretation is apparent. Therefore, this paper presents recommendations for administrators and legislators.Suggested administrative action includes: a periodic organizational audit of its testing practices, availability of an internal grievance system, maintenance of adverse impact records for easy accessibility, consideration of multiple sources of information about an applicant, fairness in the selection process, validity checks of tests for job-relatedness, EEO training for those involved in the employee selection process, and development, implementation and monitoring of a written affirmative action program.The recommendations for legislative action address the revision of the Uniform Guidelines in order to facilitate employers' compliance with Title VII mandates and to reflect U.S. Supreme Court precedent. Issues might include validation procedures, resource options, suitable alternative selection procedures, recordkeeping procedures that are less costly and burdensome, differential score guidelines, and timely consideration under the law.


Education, Administration

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