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Dr Melanie Ehren (UCL Institute of Education)
Dr Paul Newton (Ofqual’s Strategy, Risk and Research directorate)
Jeff Goodwin (Independent consultant)
Nick Wollaston (UCL Institute of Education)
For nearly two decades, primary schools in England have been held to account for the effectiveness of their teaching on the basis of results from national curriculum tests in core subjects. Primary schools face increasingly challenging targets for students’ performance on test-based accountability measures. These accountability measures are a double-edged sword: on one edge, they are intended to motivate higher attainment; on the other, however, they risk effort being wasted on strategies that inflate test scores without a corresponding impact on robust, generalizable knowledge, skill and understanding.
This session presents the findings of two studies on the nature, prevalence and effectiveness of test preparation strategies in mathematics. Presentations will look at the design of the key stage 2 test, and whether teachers distinguish patterns in the old and new tests which influence their instructional strategies.