A half century ago, the use of standardized achievement test scores was limited to: (a) informing teachers and parents about students’ achievement relative to their peers; (b) helping place students in appropriate programs; and (c) justifying the allocation of supplemental resources. However, public pressure to improve student achievement
combined with advances in the technology of standardized test taking has led to many new uses of the standardized test results. Scores from standardized achievement tests can be used to make comparisons among students, across classes, within or among school buildings, school districts, or against the national norms. Standardized tests can provide useful information related to individual strengths and weaknesses in individual students, strengths and weaknesses in the curriculum, potential achievement gaps among various groups of students, and long-term trends regarding student achievement.