ERIC Number: ED316880
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1990
Reference Count: N/A
Writing, Grades 6 and 8. Report of Student Performance 1989-90.
The North Carolina Annual Testing Program assessed the writing skills of students in Grade 6 and Grade 8 in the 1989-90 school year. Sixth-grade students were asked to write a clarification composition focusing on a special day and explaining to the reader why the day is special, and eighth-grade students were asked to write a letter to their principal persuading the principal, with sufficient elaboration, that a new subject of their choice should be taught at their school. Each of the 80,902 sixth-grade student papers and the 77,976 eighth-grade papers was read by two readers, who determined the quality of the compositions based on the composing characteristics of main idea, supporting detail, organization, and coherence. Essays were scored using a focused holistic score scale of 1 to 4 and a second, independent score of plus/minus with respect to conventions and mechanics. Results revealed that the majority of students wrote well enough to score at or above the mid-point of the 4-point scale. About 9.02% of the sixth graders and 12.59% of the eighth graders received a score of 3.5 or 4.0; approximately 15.34 sixth graders and 10.36 eighth graders scored 1.0 or 1.5. A majority of the students also displayed a reasonable command of English conventions. Writing scores have improved at the sixth grade level at 2.5 and above from previous years, but there was a slight decline in grade eight scores. Also, regional scores varied somewhat but were in line with statewide averages. (Ten tables and four figures of data are included; an appendix containing summary reports of Grade 6 and Grade 8 writing assessment from eight regions of the state is attached.) (KEH)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Reports - Research; Numerical/Quantitative Data
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: North Carolina State Dept. of Public Instruction, Raleigh.