Completed Thesis by Mia Mahnke
Since refugees, who come to Germany, often do not have formal proof of their education (Bundesagentur für Arbeit, 2017), diagnostic assessment becomes relevant in their job seeking process. Cognitive ability tests, which are frequently used to predict job applicants’ qualifications, seem to be biased against people from non-western cultures; the use of them may not be fair (e.g. Stumpf, Leenen, & Scheitza, 2016). The thesis of Mia Mahncke therefore elaborates on how fair diagnostic assessment with refugees may be conducted. Specifically, she suggests to apply coaching programs targeted to address test-wiseness and test anxiety. Moreover, Mia Mahncke developed in her thesis an experimental design to test the effectiveness of such an intervention. If subsequent empirical studies will show that the coaching is effective, this could potentially result in more unbiased assessments and, ultimately, better decisions. For more information about this topic, please contact stefan.krumm[at]fu-berlin.de
We are currently conducting research on differences in test wiseness, test anxiety, and test-taking strategies between refugees and non-refugees. We consider this important because these aspects are known to impact test performance and may thus have an impact on the validity of refugees’ test scores and potentially lead to false conclusions.
Further research projects are planned. If you are interested in our results or in contributing to our research, please contact us.