The primary aim of this study was to compare the attitudes and affective dispositions of middle-class versus lower-class Israeli elementaryschool students towards the psychometric examiner. In addition, the commonly held assumption about the meaningful relationship between attitudes towards the examiner and level of attainment in the ability test was put to an empirical test. A student feedback inventory, specifically designed to gauge the affctive reactions of students towards the examiner, was administered to 125 middle-class and 101 lower-class students following standardized group ability-test administration procedures. On the whole, the data show few meaningful social-group differences in attitudes towards the examiner. Also, the correlations between group ability-test scores and examiner attitudes, for both middle and lower-class students, were largely negligible. Thus the data negate the situational bias contention, claiming that the poor performance of disadvantaged students on ability tests may be partially attributed to negative dispositions towards the examiner, which adversely affect their level of test performance. Also, the data suggest that school psychologists in Israel, who spend a good deal of their professional time in administering, scoring and assessing the results of group ability tests, may continue to do so without fear that lower-class students' negativistic attitudes towards the examiner may be systematically debilitating their level of test performance.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Psychiatry and Mental health