n South African Journal of Education - (Re)conceptualizing validity in (outcomes-based) assessment

Volume 25, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0256-0100
  • E-ISSN: 2076-3433



Validity is one of the traditional touchstones of assessment practices. However, the definition of validity has evolved over time along with changes in assessment practices. Killen argues that the common view at present that a test is valid when it measures what it is intended to measure provides a necessary, but insufficient basis for considering validity. He proposes that it might be more pertinent to focus on evidence from which valid inferences can be made about learning. We accept Killen's argument but wish to extend his ideas by looking at how validity has been (re)conceptualized in discourses on educational research and to explore how insights gained from this work apply to assessment practices. We examine how triangulation, face validity, catalytic validity, and rhizomatic validity could broaden our thinking about assessment and enhance assessment practices

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