Teacher Education, Educational Leadership & Policy ETDs

Publication Date

Fall 11-3-2019


Standardized tests are not new to the field of education. The problem with them seems to lie in the ways these tests are now being used as criteria for various high-stakes decisions such as teachers’ evaluations, school grades, school sanctions, and even graduation from high school with a diploma. With so many different uses for standardized tests, it is easy to see how our perception of them has become skewed.

This bounded case study of a small elementary school in a large urban district centered on shifting the focus away from looking at standardized tests as a negative, as mere scores and punitive measures, and looked more towards positive mindsets and growth mentalities. This research focused on how schools can create healthy testing cultures and how principals use standardized test data to lead student learning at the school.


standardized testing, assessment, testing culture, student-centered learning, data

Document Type




Degree Name

Educational Leadership

Level of Degree


Department Name

Teacher Education, Educational Leadership & Policy

First Committee Member (Chair)

Arlie Woodrum

Second Committee Member

Allison M. Borden

Third Committee Member

Sheri Williams

Fourth Committee Member

Russ Romans

Fifth Committee Member

Kathy Alexander