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J Pers Assess. 1990 Fall;55(1-2):145-60.

Does test anxiety bias scholastic aptitude test performance by gender and sociocultural group?

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  • School of Education, University of Haifa, Mount Carmel, Israel.


This study examines the commonly held contention that test anxiety may serve as a source of bias in the scholastic aptitude test performance of gender and ethnic minority groups. In addition, this study examines sex and sociocultural group differences in the level and pattern of test anxiety among Israeli college students. The sample was composed of 163 male and 198 female students sitting for scholastic aptitude tests routinely administered to all student applicants as part of their college admissions procedures. About 67% were of Western cultural extraction whereas the remainder were of Eastern extraction. Significant differences in text anxiety scores for males and females were observed, with greater sex group differentiation on the Emotionality than on the Worry scale. Test anxiety scores were not discernible by ethnicity or social class. Furthermore, test anxiety was not differentially related to aptitude test scores by sex or sociocultural group membership. Thus, this study lends little evidence to the common contention that test anxiety differentially debilitates the aptitude test scores of females and ethnic minority student candidates.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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