Equity in Gifted/Talented (G/T) Education

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Reliability & Validity

While reliability and validity are always important, they are particularly critical when testing children and youth from poverty for G/T programs.

Reliability refers to the relationship between scores of the same individuals on the same instrument at two different times.

Validity refers to the degree to which correct inferences can be made based on the results obtained from an instrument.

When assessing students who are from poverty, several factors must be considered:

  • The sample on which the test instrument was tested should reflect a diversity of student populations, not only in terms of race/ethnicity and gender, but also socioeconomic background.
  • An instrument that has been developed with student samples that barely or marginally reflect students from lower socioeconomic levels is not suitable to identify students from poverty for gifted programs.
  • It is imperative that assessments be used that have been standardized on samples of students that reflect the population of students with whom the test is going to be used locally.

Acceptable Processes for Determining Reliability and Validity