ERIC Number: ED457242
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001
Reference Count: N/A
Changes in High School Grading Standards in Mathematics, 1982-1992.
Koretz, Daniel; Berends, Mark
Changes in high school grading standards were evaluated, focusing on mathematics because only in mathematics was it possible to adjust grades to take into account tested achievement. Data are from nationally representative surveys, the High School and Beyond Study, and the National Education Longitudinal Study of 1988. Descriptive analyses were carried out for overall high school grade point average (GPA) and for academic GPA in several subject areas. The term "grade inflation" typically refers to an increase in the average grades attained by students with a given level of proficiency in the material grades are supposed to represent. This change, called "mean shift" inflation in this report, is one way in which grades might become inflated; another way is in the weakening of the relationship between proficiency and grades ("decreased correlation"). This study examined both of these possible changes, and the analyses did not show substantial grade inflation between 1982 and 1992. Results suggest that, if changes in tested proficiency are taken into account, grades were deflated over the period, at least in academic mathematics courses. The report also discusses the widespread perception, not supported by these findings, of grade inflation. (Contains 16 figures, 33 tables, and 41 references.) (SLD)
Descriptors: Change, Grade Inflation, Grading, High School Students, High Schools, Mathematics Achievement, National Surveys, Standards
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Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: College Entrance Examination Board, Princeton, NJ.
Authoring Institution: Rand Corp., Santa Monica, CA.