Dr. Silvia Bonaccio, Telfer School of Management, with collaborator Charlie Reeve, Department of Psychology, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, received a $63,898 grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) through the Standard Research Grants program for her project entitled Investigating Test Anxiety, a Source of Psychometric Bias in Aptitude Tests.
The use of aptitude tests is common in both educational and employment settings due to their capability to predict important outcomes such as scholastic achievement and job performance. However, the finding that test scores are often negatively related to self-reported test anxiety continues to fuel concerns that these could be biased against some test takers.
Dr. Bonaccio’s project will examine test anxiety where academic and work performance outcomes are the criteria. This research will contribute significantly to the evaluation of aptitude tests to ensure their fair and unbiased use in organizational and educational contexts, and it has the potential to inform the current debate of whether test anxiety puts test takers at a significant disadvantage relative to non-anxious applicants, and, if so, whether test administrators should provide reasonable accommodations to anxious test takers.