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Radically different versus garden variety

Posted By: Michael Martin on February 12, 2003
Your professor probably wants you to review the garden variety history linking test scores to wealth, but I have two radically different approaches to this subject available on-line.

The first involves the fact that lead poisoning is virtually unknown in affluent families but endemic in low-income families and thus any research which attempts to correlate wealth effects will stumble over this very prevalent but generally unknown hidden variable. See at:

The second is a statistical phenomenon I immodestly called Martin's Paradox which details a fundamental question about how tests are scored and how humans learn. Although not directly related to SES and testing it is indirectly related because low SES families tend to cluster in neighborhoods that get labeled failing when they actually are doing well, but not as well as high SES groups. See a series of articles at:

Mike Martin
Arizona School Boards Assn
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 Effects of Socioeconomic Status (SES) and Cultural Background on Standardized Testing Results by Carol Watts on February 5, 2003
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