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The Nelson-Denny can be easily administered to large numbers of
students.  That's the only good statement I can make about this test!
It is certainly NOT an exit exam. Exit exams should test what has been
taught.  Who would spend a school term teaching what's necessary to
pass the Nelson-Denny!!

Although I've never been so unlucky to teach anywhere where this test
was used as an exit exam, I have been forced to use it as a post-test
(where the results were compared with another form of the N-D given as
a pretest).  The first time I gave it as a post-test, I was dismayed to
see very little change in scores.  I don't know why I was surprised
since I had not taught to the test nor had I given any test-taking
tips.

After a while, I decided to make myself look good, so I spent two class
periods on How to Score High on the Nelson-Denny.  (Answer every
question.  When there's 15 seconds left on the clock for the vocabulary
section, just bubble in answers but choose the same answer (e.g. all
"c" answers) to the end.  In the comprehension, look at the questions
before reading the passage and scan for the answers, and other common
test-taking tips.)  Magically, my students' scores improved!  (Not
their reading abilities, mind you, but their scores!)  What a crock!!!

Lonna Smith