The 2014 Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing significantly elevated the importance of fairness in testing.
The standards emphasize that fairness is an essential part of the validity of score interpretations. Thus, alongside validity and reliability, fairness gained status as one of three primary tenets of best practices in test design, development, implementation, and score interpretation. Furthermore, the standards emphasize the importance of considering the characteristics of all possible test takers throughout the entire testing process. Fairness can no longer be an afterthought. The standards’ emphasis on fairness as an essential component of validity is especially important for deaf people. Deaf people are diverse with varying needs for access to assessments that allow them to demonstrate their knowledge and skills. High-stakes assessment is infused throughout education and employment, particularly during transition periods.
The focus of this document is on testing fairness considerations for young deaf adults transitioning from secondary education systems to higher education or to postsecondary jobs and training.