Governments usually measure outcomes by standardised tests, such as NAPLAN. If schools are scrambling to improve their outcomes to gain funding, this can have a detrimental effect on teaching quality.
Literacy and numeracy can be assessed through creative tasks, like creating a drama performance or an electrical circuit, without hindering creativity.
NAPLAN has now been in place for a decade and needs ongoing review and refinement to make it more useful to classroom teaching and learning.
The year 2017 is finally coming to an end, so here's a wrap of our coverage for the year, with bonus quiz!
The results are in, and student achievement on NAPLAN has plateaued in literacy and numeracy, with some areas of improvement.
Standardised tests are a powerful tool for building an evidence base of what works to guide education policy.
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.
If we fail to recognise that standardised tests are metro-centric, we will continue to produce disadvantage for rural students.
Contrary to some reports, there is no new English language test for international students - the government is simply expanding standards already being met by most providers.
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.
NAPLAN is great at tracking changes over time and between demographics, but not so great at measuring what factors effect change, engagement or creativity.
The use of standardised testing is a divisive topic, and most of the disagreement comes down to beliefs about whether using it to control education is a good or bad thing.
Assessment should be a part of teaching and learning at universities. It's important because it will subvert exclusion and allow all students to take responsibility for their work.
Various forms of testing that reduce students’ knowledge, capacities and skills to a single number cannot of themselves help inform improvement.
The Scots thought their education system was world-beating, until the OECD started publishing rankings.