So if there is no research saying these tests link with teacher quality, why are we making our teachers take them?
In her discussion of the Praxis test evidence, Judge Wilbur rips the plaintiffs' witness, Dr. Ann Wilson from SDSU. The court notes that Dr. Wilson is an expert on infant and early childhood development, not the Praxis test or teacher preparation [p. 139]. Dr. Wilson offered unpersuasive testimony on the Praxis test scores:
Judge Wilbur proceeds to hammer Dr. Wilson for another couple pages. The court sounds inclined against the plaintiffs from the start, but when the plaintiffs have the burden of proof, perhaps that's fair. Again, I'm left wondering why this was the best the plantiffs could muster.
Dr. Wilson did not know whether the differences she observed in the cut scores were even statistically significant—though she could have undertaken this exercise and simply chose not to perform the calculations [p. 140].
...Educational Testing Service (ETS) has warned that scores on its tests should be interpreted “with caution” if there are fewer than 30 test takers. Id. ETS is the company that administers the Praxis exams.
Dr. Wilson’s conclusions were unreliable because she reviewed scores for exams with a very low number of test takers. Wilson Testimony; see also Armor Testimony. Despite ETS’s warning, Dr. Wilson reviewed 19 Praxis II exams with less than 30 test takers [p. 141].