Volume 10 Issue 1 (2021)

Secondary School Teachers’ Knowledge on Procedures for Constructing Quality Classroom Tests in Tanzania

pp. 40-54  |  Published Online: June 2021  |  DOI: 10.22521/unibulletin.2021.101.3

Jaquiline Amani, Septimi Kitta, Orestes Silverius Kapinga and Christina Mbilinyi


Background/purpose – Classroom assessment practices, being either formative or summative, form a fundamental part of the teaching and learning process. This paper presents findings on secondary school teachers’ competences for constructing quality classroom tests. In particular, the study examined teachers’ awareness of skills and procedures for constructing quality classroom tests, established the type of professional support teachers need for constructing quality tests based on the identified areas of deficiency, and determined the influence of experience in the teaching profession on teachers’ competences for test construction.

Materials/methods – This study was conducted with a convenient sample of 246 secondary school teachers who were drawn from four regions in Tanzania, namely Lindi, Mtwara, Kilimanjaro, and Arusha. The study employed a quantitative research approach with the use of semi-structured questionnaires as the data collection tool. Data were analyzed using IBM’s Statistical Package for Social Sciences Version 22.0 to compute frequencies, percentages, and other relevant statistical tests.

Results – The findings show that the majority of the participant teachers lacked competences for preparing quality classroom tests, particularly on the use of Table of Specification and test-item analysis. The results showed that more than 70% of the teachers had never received inservice training on the subjects of assessment and testing. It was further found that the teachers lacked professional support on how to prepare matching items, short answers, and multiple-choice test items.

Conclusion – Based on the findings, the authors recommend strengthening initial teacher education in view of competence-based assessment.

Keywords: Teachers’ test construction skills, classroom-based tests, secondary schools, Tanzania.


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