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Tuesday, February 27, 2007

He chose... Poorly.

There was an article in the Dallas Morning News yesterday about several of the local school districts using an online test produced by Gallup Corp. to screen potential teaching applicants at their schools. Using what is called the TeacherInsight test, employers are turning away many candidates because of their scores.

The article states:
“Unlike state-required certification exams, TeacherInsight measures values and behavior -- not subject knowledge. Gallup says the questions gauge natural talent based on 30 years of researching top-performing teachers."

According to Gallup officials, even though some of the questions might seem a bit subjective, top-quality teachers select the same answers, thus proving their worth.

They didn't list any of the actual test questions in the article, but I think I can imagine what the questions might look like.

#1 You have given an assessment. What do you do for your Talented and Gifted student, to ensure that he does not get bored when he is done?
A) Provide him with a choice of stimulating books to read when he is finished.
B) Ask him to write his own creative story on the back of the test.
C) Give him a 3-star crossword puzzle to work.
D) Buy him fireworks and chewing tobacco.

#2 You are participating in a fire drill exercise when you notice that one of your students is missing. What do you do?
A) Call the administrator and advise him or her of the situation.
B) Ask another teacher to watch your class while you go to look for the child.
C) Tell your other kids that you will give a reward to whoever runs back into the building and finds the missing child.
D) Use this as a teaching opportunity to explain that 95% out of 100 is still pretty high.

#3 You are having a phone conference with an irate parent, and some hurtful things have been said. How do you end the call?
A) “Thank you very much for your time. I look forward to seeing little Billy tomorrow morning.”
B) “I'm sorry that emotions are running so high, but I think we made some progress here today."
C) “I don't want to argue anymore, I'll have my principal gave you a call."
D) “Smell ya later, Beee-yotch!”

So perhaps it's true, perhaps a large portion of candidates CAN be screened out based on the answers they select on an online test. All I can say is, if you take something like this, be sure to choose your answers carefully…


IMC Guy said...

I love your questions! Do you have any more? I really think that you can never tell how successful a teacher is going to be until they are in the classroom for a while. I've been on interview teams and while some candidates seemed like they'd be great on paper, they didn't work out. There are others who probably didn't get the job because of a poor interview yet would have been fantastic teachers. It's hard to find what it really takes in a test or even an interview.

KauaiMark said...

The answer is 'D'...right?

Or maybe I should say: "The right answer is always 'D'"

Anonymous said...

If only the answers were thta obvious! I've taken it, and most of the questions list at least 3 of the 4 choices that sound like really good answers. Which one you would pick really depends on the student and the individual situation. If they were that obvious, it wouldn't such a big deal!