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The MPA Major Field Test

The MPA Major Field Test

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The MPA Major Field Test

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  1. The MPA Major Field Test Dr. Elaine Ahumada Dr. Paulette Jones Dr. Pat Kircher Dr. Gary Roberts

  2. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test This presentation will… • Address the history and development of the field test. (Pat and Paulette) • Address results and applications. (Elaine and others) • Address future considerations (Gary and all ) • Provide time for questions

  3. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test • History and Development of the MFT • Impetus for test • Timeline of design • Process • Input from all regions: Oklahoma, California, South Dakota, Mississippi, Florida and Virginia.

  4. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test • How do you measure quality of an MPA Program?-Ideally a test pulling information from academicians and practitioners.-Not an Oklahoma Test – but one for the U.S.

  5. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test

  6. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test • What should be the foundation of the test?NASPAA has been the premiere MPA education entity in the US.The 5 NASPAA competencies seemed to be logical foundation.

  7. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test • RESEARCH DESIGN ISSUES:What are the foundational job-related elements that practitioners believe most strongly affect the practice of public administration?

  8. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test • -How do practitioner job elements compare to the NASPAA competencies?-Which of these job elements are critically relevant to curriculum in MPA programs?-What academic factors do academicians believe are critically relevant for MPA programs?

  9. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test Development process – similar to the GRE -Determining objectives -Item development review -Writing and reviewing questions -Pretesting with a sample group -Removing unfair questions -Finalizing the test (ETS, 2011, How tests and test questions are developed).

  10. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test NASPAA Competencies:1 - Lead and manage in public governance.2 - Participate in and contribute to the policy process. 3 - Analyze, synthesize, think critically, solve problems and make decisions.4 - Articulate and apply a public service perspective.5 - Communicate and interact productively with a diverse and changing workforce and citizenry.

  11. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test BUILDING PART 1: -Practitioners interviewed and material reviewed in view of scholarship. -Each team member emailed their questions to the Project Manager.-All questions were combined and emailed to the team. -The 32 questions receiving the most votes became Part 1 of the test.

  12. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test • IN THE PRACTITIONER INTERVIEWS:-Only one NASPAA competency was discussed -The practitioner was asked if there were any practical applications for everyday life of the public administrator.

  13. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test • -How this concept applies in daily work -How leadership is a key ingredient to strong organizations-How motivating and managing people are skills that can be learned. -The professor would then review the information to determine how it compared with p a scholarship.

  14. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test • WRITING & REVIEWING QUESTIONS-Pretesting with a Sample Group -Removing Unfair Questions-Scrutinized it for correctness, clarity, and more than one correct answer-The test was also administered to some faculty and graduates to determine any problem questions.

  15. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test • FINALIZING THE TEST Finally the test was administered to four of the team schools, and an additional school in the northeast.

  16. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test

  17. Results and Applications • 6 cohorts of graduates at CBU = 64 students • Fall 2011-present • Assessment methods • Blackboard Scoring of MFT and Rubrics • Triangulated data – written, oral, MFT

  18. Results and Applications

  19. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test: Future Considerations • Test Future Uses: • Pre and Post Test Measure of Learning (Require multiple versions) • Use as admissions competency diagnostic (exempt intro class for example) • Use as an exit exam requirement (stand alone or as part of a comprehensive exam) • Assessing teaching effectiveness

  20. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test: Future Considerations • Test Sponsorship Options for Central Administrative Support • a. Single university (high costs, unless prestigious school, reduced credibility) • b. Consortium of schools (ideal option, blend of private and public, free rider problems) • c. NASPAA • d. ETS (Gold Standard, costly, lacks economic viability)

  21. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test: Future Considerations • Test Development and Administration Viability Issues • Key elements: Ongoing psychometric development • Reliability, validity, utility and updating of content • Multiple versions for pre and post

  22. Master of Public Administration Major Field Test: Future Considerations • Administration Options: • Computer Based Best for Cost, Convenience and Integrity • Security Issues: • Proctored Central administration at each School: Office of Academic Testing, Texas A&M, Corpus Christi example, http://testing.tamucc.edu/major_field_tests/index.html • Individual departments

  23. Questions • eahumada@calbaptist.edu • pjones@hc.edu • pkircher@calbaptist.edu • garyrob@regent.edu