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Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research

Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER)

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Full-Text Articles in Education

Infographic: Teaching Practices – Clarity Of Instruction, Jo Earp Sep 2019

Infographic: Teaching Practices – Clarity Of Instruction, Jo Earp

Teacher infographics

As a classroom teacher, how often do you explain what you expect students to learn, or how old and new topics are related? The latest OECD Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS 2018), asked participants about their use of a range of teaching practices associated with clarity of instruction. Today’s infographic takes a look at the results.


Infographic: Student Attitudes Towards Stem, Dominique Russell Aug 2019

Infographic: Student Attitudes Towards Stem, Dominique Russell

Teacher infographics

The Australian Department of Industry, Innovation and Science commissioned a study to examine the attitudes of Australian students towards STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics). In this infographic, we take a look at some of the findings.


Latest From Acer International Offices Aug 2019

Latest From Acer International Offices

International Developments

ACER works through its international offices to deliver a diverse range of results-oriented projects. They are often implemented in partnership with global and local development partners with the goal to advance education outcomes and improve learning.


The Role Of Learning Progressions In Global Scales, Ray Adams Aug 2019

The Role Of Learning Progressions In Global Scales, Ray Adams

International Developments

Learning progressions are valuable tools for the international assessment community. Ray Adams reports.


Developing A Tool For Analysing National Assessment Systems, Ursula Schwantner Aug 2019

Developing A Tool For Analysing National Assessment Systems, Ursula Schwantner

International Developments

The Global Partnership for Education (GPE) Secretariat appointed the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) to develop a tool for analysing national assessment systems and identifying areas for improvement. Known as the Analysis of National Learning Assessment Systems (ANLAS), it provides a framework and tools that help countries, particularly GPE partner developing countries, to examine their national learning assessments and design strategies to address any gaps.


Scottish National Assessments Inform Next Steps For Learning Aug 2019

Scottish National Assessments Inform Next Steps For Learning

International Developments

ACER works with the Scottish Government, in partnership with Twig and SCHOLAR, to develop and deliver assessments of literacy and numeracy learning progress. Since 2017, more than a million assessments have been completed by children and young people throughout Scotland.


Building Capacity For Bhutan’S Learning Assessment, Mee Young Han Aug 2019

Building Capacity For Bhutan’S Learning Assessment, Mee Young Han

International Developments

ACER is supporting development of Bhutan’s National Education Assessment Framework (NEAF) and strengthening local capacity for its implementation. Dr Mee Young Han reports.


International Developments (No.9) 2019 Aug 2019

International Developments (No.9) 2019

International Developments

In this issue of International Developments, we summarise the research evidence gathered through the work of the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) and the impact our projects make around the globe.


Key Skills For The 21st Century: An Evidence-Based Review, Esther Doecke, Quentin Maire Aug 2019

Key Skills For The 21st Century: An Evidence-Based Review, Esther Doecke, Quentin Maire

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

It is vital that education systems deliver quality outcomes for all young people and prepare them well for their future in the economy and society. To do so, many systems have traditionally had a strong focus on developing academic skills, particularly in literacy and numeracy. In recent years, education systems have developed greater expectations that schools will also equip young people with a broader set of skills for the 21st century (e.g. creativity, critical thinking, problem-solving). This paper addresses these developments and the challenges they present. Building on an evidence-based review, this paper asks what are the key skills ...


Assessing Computational Thinking, Daniel Duckworth Aug 2019

Assessing Computational Thinking, Daniel Duckworth

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

This paper provides some context for the role of computation thinking (CT) in the Australian Curriculum, an abridged literature review of CT as a problem-solving framework from the International Computer and Information Literacy Study (ICILS) 2018 assessment framework and some examples of how CT has been used to solve real-world problems. Finally, this paper presents ways to teach and assess CT.


What Can Early Childhood Education And Care Settings Teach Us About Skills For The 21st Century?, Dan Cloney, Kellie Picker Aug 2019

What Can Early Childhood Education And Care Settings Teach Us About Skills For The 21st Century?, Dan Cloney, Kellie Picker

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

Early childhood education and care (ECEC) settings are naturally oriented towards promoting 21st century skills. This can be seen in Australia, where learning is defined as the development of identity, social and emotional skills, problem-solving, and communication skills. A 21st century orientation is also seen in the playbased pedagogies implemented in ECEC settings. A gap, however, exists in the ability of the ECEC sector to communicate its successes. This gap relates to the lack of measurement tools to quantify the quality of the adult–child interactions in ECEC settings, and children’s growth in these 21 century skills and abilities ...


Assessment In The Interpersonal Domain: Experiences From Empathy Assessment In Medical Education, Neville Chiavaroli Aug 2019

Assessment In The Interpersonal Domain: Experiences From Empathy Assessment In Medical Education, Neville Chiavaroli

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

Frameworks for the teaching and assessment of 21st-century skills commonly recognise the importance of learning and skill development in the interpersonal domain. They also usually acknowledge the challenge of reliably and validly assessing students in this domain. In the field of medical education and in selecting students for medical courses, the concept of empathy has become central to representing the particular interpersonal understandings and skills expected of students and practising doctors. Attempts to assess these attributes during medical training are just as challenging as in school contexts. This presentation draws on several years’ experience of working with medical educators to ...


Digital Literacy: Myths And Realities, Julian Fraillon Aug 2019

Digital Literacy: Myths And Realities, Julian Fraillon

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

Digital literacy, under a wide variety of names, is routinely classified as a 21st-century skill and is frequently reported as an area of high priority in school education systems internationally. In comparison with students in other countries, Australian students have high levels of access to digital technologies both at and outside of school. With this access comes the expectations that students will be highly-proficient users of digital technologies and that schools will use digital technologies in transformative ways to support student learning. This session will examine how concepts of digital literacy have developed over time, what data from large-scale assessments ...


Assessing And Understanding Social And Emotional Skills: The Oecd Study On Social And Emotional Skills, Sue Thomson Aug 2019

Assessing And Understanding Social And Emotional Skills: The Oecd Study On Social And Emotional Skills, Sue Thomson

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

In an increasingly fast-changing and diverse world, the importance of developing social and emotional skills is becoming more evident. The large body of accumulated evidence shows that these skills have strong relationships with life outcomes and they have been referred to as a key component of 21st century skills. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Study on Social and Emotional Skills is a new international assessment of these skills in students at primary and secondary schools. This study also gathers information on students’ families, schools and community learning contexts, aiming to provide information about the conditions or practices ...


Teaching And Assessing The General Capabilities In A Secondary School Context, Loren Clarke, Melissa Hughes Aug 2019

Teaching And Assessing The General Capabilities In A Secondary School Context, Loren Clarke, Melissa Hughes

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

Education researchers, policymakers and private enterprise agree that, in addition to content knowledge, students in the 21st century need to acquire particular skills to equip them for active citizenship in the modern world. This is a real challenge for teachers today: how do they teach and assess the skills needed to live and work in the 21st century? This paper will explore the development of Eltham High School’s focus on teaching and assessment of collaboration, problem-solving, and critical thinking over the past seven years. It will explore the development of the assessment program, its connection to the school and ...


Using Learning Analytics To Measure 21st-Century Skills, Dragan Gašević Aug 2019

Using Learning Analytics To Measure 21st-Century Skills, Dragan Gašević

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

The unprecedented opportunities to collect data about learning and contexts in which learning occurs has attracted great attention in education. The use of data analytics and machine learning methods have offered much potential to address many relevant questions in education. This talk will focus on the use of learning analytics to measure 21st-century skills in education and outline the types of data commonly used. It will also discuss approaches that are used for analysis and modelling of relevant learning processes and outline the ways in which learning analytics can be used to track learning progression and how the validity of ...


The Science Behind The Art Of Teaching: Evaluation As Inspiration, Michele Bruniges Am Aug 2019

The Science Behind The Art Of Teaching: Evaluation As Inspiration, Michele Bruniges Am

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

Teachers across Australia inspire students to love learning. Our best teachers are constantly evaluating their impact on learning outcomes and adapting their practice – balancing the art and science of teaching. As we move rapidly towards the third decade of the 21st century, there is more pressure than ever for all teachers to deliver both deep discipline knowledge and the skills students need to survive and thrive in the workplace of the future. We need to use technology and data to support teachers to maximise learning outcomes for their students. This has to be done in a way that helps teachers ...


Building The Capacity Of Teachers For Supporting 21st-Century Learning, Jenny Gore, Michelle Ware, Sui-Linn White, Lee-Anne Collins, Lloyd Bowen, Carole Hansen Aug 2019

Building The Capacity Of Teachers For Supporting 21st-Century Learning, Jenny Gore, Michelle Ware, Sui-Linn White, Lee-Anne Collins, Lloyd Bowen, Carole Hansen

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

Quality Teaching Rounds (QTR) was first conceptualised by Julie Bowe and Jenny Gore in 2007. It involves teachers working in professional learning communities (PLCs) to reflect on their classroom practice through the lens of the quality teaching model. This teacher-led process builds capacity for quality teaching with novice and experienced teachers alike. Following a set of protocols and adhering to essential features of the approach, one PLC member teaches a lesson, observed by all others. The lesson is coded individually and then collaboratively analysed, using the shared language of the model. This poster presentation graphically highlights evidence from several research ...


How Teachers Engage With Student Assessment Data: Understanding Antecedents To Data-Driven Decision Making, Cynthia P. Raffe, Dennis Alonzo, University Of New South Wales Aug 2019

How Teachers Engage With Student Assessment Data: Understanding Antecedents To Data-Driven Decision Making, Cynthia P. Raffe, Dennis Alonzo, University Of New South Wales

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

In recent years, education systems internationally have been encouraging data-use initiatives with the aim of improving student learning through data-driven decision making (DDDM). The use of student assessment data in particular has been promoted to guide teaching practices and progress student learning. Despite this, the adoption of data-use practices by New South Wales classroom teachers has been slow. The study qualitatively examined two core foundational activities that affect New South Wales classroom teachers’ use of student assessment data, referred to as assessment data collection (ADC) practices, and assessment data analysis (ADA) practices. Specifically, the study sought to answer: What are ...


Digital Literacy Skill Development: Prescriptive Learning Analytics Assessment Model, Elspeth Mckay Aug 2019

Digital Literacy Skill Development: Prescriptive Learning Analytics Assessment Model, Elspeth Mckay

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

There is a broad awareness of how information communications technology (ICT) digital literacy impacts everyday life. In schools, use of ICT tools has become mandatory. These tools include computers, tablets and mobile phones. These smart devices are used to send emails, browse the internet and make video calls. It is essential for teachers to identify student digital literacy levels through classroom activities and when to implement flexible ePedagogies for students who need help. This presentation will provide easy-to-follow steps to manage learning analytics to determine digital literacy skill levels. Learning analytics can be used for a range of purposes: to ...


Educational Reform – Scottish Style!, David Leng Aug 2019

Educational Reform – Scottish Style!, David Leng

2009 - 2019 ACER Research Conferences

The government in Scotland has made education their defining mission, setting out a clear framework for improvement based on four key aims as articulated in the National Improvement Framework (2015). One improvement driver is Assessing Children’s Progress. This new approach to assessment has been developed to integrate curriculum, assessment (particularly classroom assessment) and pedagogy. Teacher professional judgement has been central to this, and national initiatives have focused on supporting and strengthening it. In this context, the Scottish National Standardised Assessments (SNSA) was launched in 2017, and is a national assessment tool to support improvement in classroom practice while still ...


Infographic: School Attendance And Mental Health Disorders, Kristen Owen Aug 2019

Infographic: School Attendance And Mental Health Disorders, Kristen Owen

Teacher infographics

Mental disorders are a significant cause of absence, particularly in high school, a new examination of data from the Australian Child and Adolescent Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing shows. Today’s infographic looks at some of the results across Years 1-12.


Improving Young Children's Learning In Economically Developing Countries: What Works, Why, And Where? Scoping Review, Jen Jackson, Syeda Kashfee Ahmed, Toby Carslake, Petra Lietz Aug 2019

Improving Young Children's Learning In Economically Developing Countries: What Works, Why, And Where? Scoping Review, Jen Jackson, Syeda Kashfee Ahmed, Toby Carslake, Petra Lietz

Monitoring Learning

This scoping review responds to the increasing interest in improving early childhood education and care (ECEC) in economically developing countries. It examines available research in relation to the question: What effective interventions have been implemented recently in economically developing countries to improve children’s learning in the years before school? As much of the research underpinning ECEC interventions has focused on economically developed countries, it is timely to review available research about the effectiveness of interventions in the economically developing world. The ECEC interventions were categorised as Income supplementation (n=8); Parent-focused interventions (n=37); Child-focused education and nurturing care ...


Infographic: Teaching Practices – Cognitive Activation, Jo Earp Jul 2019

Infographic: Teaching Practices – Cognitive Activation, Jo Earp

Teacher infographics

In the latest cycle of the OECD’s Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS 2018), participants were asked about their use of a range of teaching practices. Today’s infographic looks at the results for practices associated with cognitive activation.


Infographic: Careers Education In Secondary Schools, Jo Earp Jun 2019

Infographic: Careers Education In Secondary Schools, Jo Earp

Teacher infographics

New research from the UK has explored the impact of extra careers talks by employers on secondary students' motivation to study, achievement, and their career plans and anticipated pathways.


Infographic: Teacher Status Around The World, Jo Earp May 2019

Infographic: Teacher Status Around The World, Jo Earp

Teacher infographics

A global survey asked members of the public in 35 countries about their attitudes to teachers and teaching, with data used to create a ‘status index’ score out of 100. Today’s infographic looks at the 15 countries where teachers are most valued, according to their score.


Infographic: Out-Of-Field Maths Teaching, Dominique Russell May 2019

Infographic: Out-Of-Field Maths Teaching, Dominique Russell

Teacher infographics

A report released by the Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute has revealed the chance of students in Australia in Years 7-10 being taught Mathematics by an out-of-field teacher. In this infographic, we look at the findings.


Infographic: Physical Activity In Schools, Dominique Russell Apr 2019

Infographic: Physical Activity In Schools, Dominique Russell

Teacher infographics

A new report looks at the levels of physical activity among children and young people across the world. Grades were assigned to a number of indicators which influence physical activity.


Feeling Safe At School – What Does The Research Say?, Sue Thomson Mar 2019

Feeling Safe At School – What Does The Research Say?, Sue Thomson

Teacher columnist- Sue Thomson

Most people would argue that children should feel safe at school. For some children, school is possibly the only place in which they feel safe. However, when we see reports of school shootings and large-scale violence in school communities in other countries, we are reminded that this is not universal. On a more day-to-day level, bullying, and cyberbullying in particular, can significantly influence students’ perceptions of school safety. However, the ramifications of bullying on students’ levels of stress and wellbeing are not always considered as elements of school climate.


Infographic: Top Borrowed Picture Books, Dominique Russell Mar 2019

Infographic: Top Borrowed Picture Books, Dominique Russell

Teacher infographics

Each year, a list of the top 10 most borrowed picture books in Australia is released by the Civica Libraries Index. See which picture books made the list for 2018 in today’s infographic.