ERIC Number: ED436546
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1995
Student Achievement: A Study of the Effects of First Steps Teaching on Student Achievement.
Western Australia Education Dept., Perth.
First Steps is a program instituted by the Western Australia Ministry of Education to improve the literacy and numeracy of primary school students, particularly those at risk of academic failure. First Steps is organized around reading, writing, spelling, and oral language; children's skills are organized along developmental continua. This study, conducted by Murdoch University, was an attempt to find out if the effects of teachers using First Steps strategies could be measured in terms of student achievement. Participating schools (n=22) tested their Year 3 and Year 7 students with the Monitoring Standards in Education (MSE) reading and writing tests, and their teachers completed a questionnaire regarding their training in and use of First Steps strategies. In all, 889 Year-3 and 902 Year-7 students were tested. The analysis adjusted and removed effects of students' socioeconomic status, ethnic background, first language other than English, and recent arrival in Australia. After removing effects of these factors, there was a positive relationship between the degree of implementation of First Steps and student results on literacy tests, a finding that supports the position that First Steps was assisting students to master literacy skills more successfully than traditional methods. The effects of First Step were much stronger for Year 3, and, in fact, the understanding and use of First Steps were much higher in Year 3. An appendix contains the teacher survey instrument, the student background information sheet, and the data analysis report from Murdoch University. (SLD)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Child Development, Developmental Stages, Elementary Education, Elementary School Students, Elementary School Teachers, Foreign Countries, Grade 3, Grade 7, High Risk Students, Literacy, Program Evaluation, Reading Achievement, Teacher Attitudes, Teaching Methods, Writing (Composition)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Western Australia Education Dept., Perth.
Identifiers - Location: Australia