ERIC Number: ED340740
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1990-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Controlling Curricular Change through State-Mandated Testing: Teacher's Views and Perceptions.
Bauer, Sally; And Others
The perceptions of elementary school teachers toward the initiation of the New York State program evaluation tests (PETs) in science and social studies were studied. In New York, the PETs are intended to assess the local instructional program, rather than evaluate students. The social studies (grade 6) and science (grade 4) PETs were implemented in 1987-88 and 1989, respectively. Both tests are driven by the state syllabus for elementary school social studies and science. The following groups of 600 teachers each were sampled: (1) fourth-grade teachers; (2) sixth-grade teachers; and (3) teachers for kindergarten through third-grade and fifth-grade. Overall, 477 teachers (27%) responded to a Likert-type mail survey. Responses of fourth-grade and sixth-grade teachers were analyzed for this study. Teachers in general agreed with statements about why program evaluation is conducted, but they also perceived PETs as an assessment of student and teacher performance and a means of encouraging teachers to teach social studies and science. Teachers indicated some general negative attitudes toward the PETs and had mixed responses concerning how PETs were being perceived and used in their schools. Fourth-grade teachers, who had one more year of experience with the test, were somewhat more positive about the usefulness of the test and were more likely to have changed their teaching as a result of the PETs. Both groups reported including changes in teaching strategies that reflected the structure of the tests. It is too early to tell if changes in content coverage and the real adoption of the syllabus will occur as a result of these tests. Four tables present study data, and a 10-item list of references is included. (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: State Univ. of New York, Albany. Evaluation Consortium.