Memorial consequences of answering SAT II questions.
Many thousands of students take standardized tests every year. In the current research, we asked whether answering standardized test questions affects students' later test performance. Prior research has shown both positive and negative effects of multiple-choice testing on later tests, with negative effects arising from students selecting incorrect alternatives on multiple-choice tests and then believing they were correct (Roediger & Marsh, 2005). In the current experiments, undergraduates and high school students answered multiple-choice questions retired from SAT II tests (that are no longer in the testing pool) on biology, chemistry, U.S. history, and world history, and later answered cued-recall questions about these subjects. In 3 experiments, we observed positive testing effects: More final cued-recall questions were answered correctly if the items had appeared on the initial multiple-choice test. We also sometimes observed negative testing effects: intrusions of multiple-choice distractors as answers on the final cued-recall test. Students who scored well on the initial test benefited from taking the test, but lower achieving students showed either less benefit (undergraduates) or costs from the testing (high school students).
Marsh, EJ; Agarwal, PK; Roediger, HL
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