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What can we learn from NAPLAN?

National and international assessments offer opportunities to identify policies and practices that support improvement in student outcomes.

The National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) makes it possible to explore the reading and numeracy skills of Australian students in some detail, and because it is a ‘census’ of students, it is possible to study changes at the level of individual schools as well as school systems. This introduces the possibility of identifying policies and practices that may have led to these improvements, explains Professor Geoff Masters AO, Chief Executive of the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER), writing in Teacher Magazine.

NAPLAN and international studies like the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment as well as the IEA’s Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study and Progress in International Reading Literacy Study provide us with an opportunity to identify and understand where gains are being made in our schools, but that, Professor Masters explains, depends on taking a systematic approach. ■

Read the full article:

How well are we learning from NAPLAN?’ by Geoff Masters, is published in Teacher.

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