15 October 2012
(Widyaiswara LPMP Sulawesi Selatan)
Raw scores are obtained simply by counting the number of correct answers. A raw score as such, however, has no or very limited meaning; without other information we cannot tell whether a raw score of ,say, 60 out of 100 represents superior, average, or poor performance. In Harris’ words (1969: 121): ‘It would seem a truism, that a raw score without context can have little real meaning’. He further gives an example by saying that we, ordinarily, suppose that a raw score of 24 out of 26 would be excellent, while a score of 12 out of 26 would be quite low. But if, as part of a test where a group of college graduates were asked to name the letters of the alphabet in proper sequence, a score of 24 correct out of 26 would hardly qualify as excellent. If, on the other hand, another test where these same subjects were asked to recite the letters of the alphabet in reverse order within very limited time, a score of 12 out of 26 might very well have a rating of superior.
The question, then, is:”how to give meaning to raw scores?” One simple method is to determine the average score on the test so that each subject’s performance may be compared with the “average” (Harris, 1969: 122), (Jabu, 2008: 133). Another way is to convert the raw scores into percentile or standard scores in order to show approximately how far above or below the “average” each subject’s score is.