SOURCE: EDUCATIONAL TESTING SERVICE

April 12, 2006 10:00 ET

ETS Launches Core Version of Its ICT Literacy Assessment; First Test Administration Is Free for Qualifying Colleges and High Schools

PRINCETON, NJ -- (MARKET WIRE) -- April 12, 2006 -- ETS announced today that 7,000 students at more than 38 four-year institutions, community colleges and high schools nationwide are taking the new Core version of its Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Literacy Assessment. Institutions that meet minimum requirements can administer the test free of charge until May 5.

The ICT Literacy Assessment is a simulation-based test designed to measure a student's ability to use critical thinking to define, access, manage, integrate, evaluate, create and communicate information in a technological environment. Test takers are asked to perform 15 information management tasks -- such as extracting information from a database, developing a spreadsheet, or composing an e-mail summary of research findings -- in approximately 75 minutes.

The Core level of the test is designed for high school seniors and first-year students at community colleges and four-year institutions. ETS also offers an Advanced level, designed for rising juniors at four-year institutions and students transitioning from two-year to four-year institutions.

"ETS first launched its ICT Literacy Assessment in January 2005, and that first test was designed for college students transitioning to upper-level coursework," says Terry Egan, ETS's ICT Literacy Project Manager. "What we heard from our customers is that they wanted to test students earlier, as they were entering college, to help them determine which students might need ICT literacy remediation and which could place out of ICT classes. Schools can also use the Core test to support the need for institutional ICT literacy initiatives, better plan curricula to address ICT literacy gaps, and provide evidence to accrediting agencies on student learning outcomes."

Missouri State University is planning to administer the test to 1,500 students as part of its required General Education class, "Computers for Learning."

"There is an assumption that because students have grown up with computers, they are ICT proficient," says Sue McCrory, coordinator of Missouri State's Computers for Learning course. "Yes, they can instant message and buy things online, but many of them have never used a spreadsheet or don't know whether the information they are finding on the Internet is from an authoritative source. This assessment can help us validate areas in which our ICT curriculum is successful, and point out some areas where we may need to make changes to ensure that we are preparing our students to be successful in college and in life."

Only high school seniors and first-year college students can take the assessment during this first test administration. ETS is offering the assessment for free to schools that commit to testing a minimum of 100 students by May 5 and that meet minimum technological requirements.

For more information about the ETS® ICT Literacy Assessment and to view an online demo, visit www.ets.org/ictliteracy.

About ETS

ETS is a nonprofit institution with a long-held commitment to advance learning. The mission of ETS is to advance quality and equity in education by providing fair and valid assessments, research and related services for all people worldwide. In serving individuals, educational institutions and government agencies around the world, ETS customizes solutions to meet the need for teacher professional development products and services, classroom and end-of-course assessments, and research-based teaching and learning tools. Founded in 1947 and based in Princeton, New Jersey, ETS develops, administers and scores more than 24 million tests annually in more than 180 countries, at over 9,000 locations worldwide.

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