Race and Cognitive-Ability Test Performance: The Mediating Effects of Test Preparation, Test-Taking Strategy Use and Self-Efficacy

Aleksander P.J. Ellis, Ann Marie Ryan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Scopus citations

Abstract

Test-taking strategy use, cognitive-ability test preparation, and test-taking self-efficacy were examined as possible mediators of the relationship between race and cognitiveability test performance. We hypothesized that African Americans would report using fewer test-taking strategies and less test preparation when compared to White Americans. In addition, we proposed that African Americans would report lower levels of test-taking self-efficacy when faced with a cognitive-ability test. It was expected that these 3 variables would mediate the relationship between race and cognitive-ability test performance. Using a sample of 170 college students, results indicated that African Americans reported using more ineffective test-taking strategies, reported participating in more cognitiveability test preparation, and reported higher levels of test-taking self-efficacy when compared to White Americans. A portion of the difference in performance on a cognitiveability test between African Americans and White Americans could be attributed to the use of ineffective strategies and test preparation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2607-2629
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Applied Social Psychology
Volume33
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2003

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology

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