ERIC Number: ED416080
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
Great Expectations? Defining and Assessing Rigor in State Standards for Mathematics and English Language Arts.
Joftus, Scott; Berman, Ilene
Are states setting high expectations for student learning? To answer this question the Council for Basic Education (CBE) evaluated the rigor of mathematics and language arts standards in the United States. This report is divided into the following sections: (1) Context for the Study; (2) Rigor in State Standards; (3) Issues Affecting the Evaluation of Rigor in State Standards; (4) Application of the Evaluation Process; (5) Process Design; and (6) Future Directions. Evaluation of the standards documents from 43 states yields several important findings: (1) in language arts, seven states had very rigorous standards, 21 had rigorous standards, and 14 had standards with low levels of rigor; (2) in mathematics, 16 states had very rigorous standards, 24 had rigorous standards, and three had standards with low levels of rigor; (3) state mathematics standards tend to be more rigorous than language arts standards; (4) most states' language arts standards address basic skills but do not address literature study, research, or language study such as word origins and differences between standard usage and slang; (5) most states' mathematics standards contain few major gaps in the concepts or skills included, and states with low to moderate levels of rigor tend to address the most essential concepts and skills but at a lower level of sophistication; and (6) states are incorporating both concepts (e.g., algebra and geometry) and skills (e.g., problem solving and reasoning) into their standards. Appendices contain advisory panels, grades for rigor of state standards, frameworks for mathematics and language arts, and scoring rubrics. (PVD)
Descriptors: Academic Standards, Educational Assessment, Educational Objectives, Elementary Secondary Education, Language Arts, Mathematics Education, Program Evaluation, State Standards
Council for Basic Education, 1319 F Street NW, Suite 900, Washington, DC 20004-1152; phone: 202-347-4171 ($8).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Council for Basic Education, Washington, DC.