Does teaching to the test improve student learning?
A central concern surrounding test-based accountability is that teachers may narrow teaching practices to improve test performance on a curriculum-based specific knowledge test rather than student learning more broadly. Two of the most common teaching practices that “teach to the test” are providing test-specific classwork and increasing the frequency with which students take practice tests. Whether such teaching practices improve student learning—both in terms of learning the content associated with a specific knowledge test as well as more general learning—is a largely unanswered question. To approach this question, this paper uses a student fixed effects approach to analyze the impact of these kinds of narrow teaching practices on student performance on a specific test as well as a general knowledge test. We find that test-specific classwork and practice tests with specific test items tend to have little or negative impacts on curriculum specific or general knowledge test performance, except for male students, and that subject practice tests (without emphasizing test-specific items) have positive effects on student outcomes on both kinds of tests, but larger on the curriculum-specific than on the general test, and much larger on the curriculum-specific test for male students. We discuss the logic for these results and what they tell us about the effectiveness of test-focused teaching practices more generally.
The authors estimate contribution of different factors in reading skills of 15?year-olds by using four models of multilevel regression analysis. It turned out that the most significant factor is family background — not only at the individual level, but at the school level as well (average school socio-economic status of schoolchildren families effects average reading skills). At the school level the aggregated family characteristics of students affect individual achievements, and this effect surpasses an effect of school resources and localization of schools — those school factors that show a significant contribution to achievement. Attitudes toward reading and learning are significant at the individual level, but at the school level children’s attitudes toward reading and school don’t make an independent contribution to the individual results.
On the basis of PISA-2009 materials: Reading literacy The efficiency of one year of study was explored on the basis of PISA-2009 (reading) materials in seven countries: Russia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia, Germany, Canada and Brazil. An instrumental variable was used, which enabled to assess the effect of one year of study by the nonstrict method of regression discontinuity. The analysis included both general educational programs and vocational educational programs together and comprehensive schools separately. It is found that in Russia the efficiency of one year of study is insignificant to all programs’ students. In the countries where early division into general educational and vocational programs is practised, the efficiency of studying is lower than in the countries where all pupils of 15 years old learn a general educational program. For general educational programs’ students the efficiency of studying is significant in all countries. Compared to the general educational trajectory, low efficiency is typical of vocational programs’ students. The way a family’s socio-economic status and efficiency of school education are interrelated and how much they are interrelated depends a lot on an educational system and vary widely by country. In Russia, as well as in some other countries, efficiency of studying does not depend on pupils’ socio-economic indices. The importance of the results obtained for assessment of efficiency of studying is discussed, and particularly for fair assessment of national achievements in countries with different sets of educational trajectories.
The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) is a worldwide study by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in member and non-member nations of 15-year-old school pupils' scholastic performance on mathematics, science, and reading. It was first performed in 2000 and then repeated every three years. It is done with view to improving education policies and outcomes. The data has increasingly been used both to assess the impact of education quality on incomes and growth and for understanding what causes differences in achievement across nations.
In 2012 the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), for the first time in the history of large-scale assessments, included a new type of problems called “interactive problems”. This article will analyze the problems. The research area behind it is the psychology of complex problem solving in a complex multi-factor environment which involves search, experimenting and control in conditions of uncertainty. The article discusses the new opportunities that open up and the problems that arise in introducing such problems in large-scale assessment practice, with particular focus on the problem of standard assessment of creative problems. It looks at the growing importance of studies into exploratory behavior and “experimentation with experimentation” and their impact on education policy.
Full text (Russian): Poddiakov, A. (2012). Reshenie kompleksnykh problem v PISA-2012 i PISA-2015: vzaimodeistvie so slozhnoi real'nost'yu [Complex Problem Solving at PISA 2012 and PISA 2015: Interaction with Complex Reality]. Obrazovatel'naya Politika, 6, 34-53. http://edupolicy.ru/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/Poddjakov-No.6.2012.pdf
Full text (English translation): Poddiakov, A. (2012). Complex Problem Solving at PISA 2012 and PISA 2015: Interaction with Complex Reality]. Obrazovatel'naya Politika, 6, 34-53. https://www.hse.ru/data/2013/11/24/1337084180/cps-in-pisa.docx
Period of training in a higher school is a threshold on the professional life way, therefore, it reflects the willingness to vigorously respond to all the vicissitudes of life and desire for constant self-improvement. Data collection is produced at the Higher School of Economics, Department of Management. We assumed that students with high levels of emotional intelligence must have a high rank.
This publication presents Russia results in PISA 2018. It also shows the dynamics of PISA scores in the 2000-s. The changes in different types of reading skills are presented as well as the proportion of functionally illiterate students. Besides the scores, the data that describes schools climate, including attitude to school, bullying, discipline in class, are analysed. Some issues related to the provision of schools with resources are being addressed.In addition, the social and territorial inequality of educational outcomes in Russia is described. In particular, PISA 2018 allows us to compare the results of the Moscow region and the Republic of Tatarstan with the average scores in the country. Based on the analysis, authots make basic hypothesis about possible changes in Russian education that can be associated with Russia results in PISA. At the end, the publication proposes some steps that could help to improve educational outcomes of Russian students. The publication will be interesting to a wide audience of specialists engaged in educational policy and practice, as well as to researchers of educational inequality and education quality factors.
Using a natural experiment situation, this chapter describes the process of curriculum reform in Russian-medium schools in Latvia and Estonia. The research question focuses on whether those curriculum reforms were successful from the perspective of schools’ interiorisation of new curriculum and PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) performance improvement. Using the three-layered curriculum approach (intended, implemented and attained curriculum), this chapter analyses how the intentions of the laws and other reform-related documents were implemented in everyday school practice and are reflected in attained educational results. To address this issue, a series of in-depth interviews in Russian-medium schools, in conjunction with the PISA 2003 2012 trends analysis, were conducted. The results showed that intended and attained curricula have grown closer in both countries. Schools actively implement proposed reforms in teaching, and PISA performance has been constantly improving, showing that the attained curriculum is approaching what was intended, though this process is different in the two countries.
The quality of education in the United States has been heavily criticized in part because of U.S. students’ performance on international tests, such as the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) and the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS). Although simple country averages may support such criticisms, there are many problems in comparing test scores of students in the U.S. as a whole with students in countries with very different social and educational environments. Not least of these problems is that students in the United States do not attend school in a “U.S. educational system,” but rather in at least 51 different systems, many of which have experienced very significant progress over time. The most relevant lessons for improving U.S. education may therefore be found in our successful states, rather than in other countries.
Institutions affect investment decisions, including investments in human capital. Hence institutions are relevant for the allocation of talent. Good market-supporting institutions attract talent to productive value-creating activities, whereas poor ones raise the appeal of rent-seeking. We propose a theoretical model that predicts that more talented individuals are particularly sensitive in their career choices to the quality of institutions, and test these predictions on a sample of around 95 countries of the world. We find a strong positive association between the quality of institutions and graduation of college and university students in science, and an even stronger negative correlation with graduation in law. Our findings are robust to various specifications of empirical models, including smaller samples of former colonies and transition countries. The quality of human capital makes the distinction between educational choices under strong and weak institutions particularly sharp. We show that the allocation of talent is an important link between institutions and growth.