Articles on NAPLAN

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The average year nine Indigenous student in a very remote area scores about the same in NAPLAN reading as the average year three non-Indigenous city student, and significantly lower in writing. Aap/Tracey Nearmy

Closing the gap in Indigenous literacy and numeracy? Not remotely – or in cities

Using equivalent year levels provides us with a clearer picture of the gap for Indigenous students, who can be up to an equivalent of 7.7 years behind their non-Indigenous counterparts in writing.
Standardised assessments can inform what teachers teach, based on evidence of student learning. Shutterstock

Evidence-based education needs standardised assessment

Standardised tests are a powerful tool for building an evidence base of what works to guide education policy.
For a student who is blind, the obvious test adjustment is providing a braille test if they are proficient in braille. Shutterstock

Standardised tests limit students with disability

Standardised tests restrict how well students with disability can do, which reinforces the idea that there are things they can't do that children without disability can.
Results from the 2017 NAPLAN results showed very little improvement since the test was introduced 10 years ago. Richard Wainwright/AAP

NAPLAN has done little to improve student outcomes

NAPLAN is good at measuring some aspects of education, including knowledge difference between demographics, but has not produced a positive effect on student learning outcomes.
“Slow” movements promote concepts of mindfulness and a consideration of process as well as outcomes. Shutterstock/Jaromir Chalabala

For long-term improvements, schools need to slow down

Pressure on schools to make rapid improvements discourages deeper thinking about long-term solutions. Education can learn a lot from "slow" movements.
How can we use data from international tests to improve student learning? from

NAPLAN results: moving beyond our obsession with numbers

Various forms of testing that reduce students’ knowledge, capacities and skills to a single number cannot of themselves help inform improvement.
Australia has slipped further down the international rankings in maths, science and reading. from

PISA results don’t look good, but before we panic let’s look at what we can learn from the latest test

Rather than leaping to conclusions about a failing education system, we need to look at what the data tells us about student performance at a state level to help us make more informed decisions.

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