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ERIC Number: ED504214
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Aug
Pages: 35
Abstractor: ERIC
Teachers' Use of Student Data Systems to Improve Instruction: 2005 to 2007
Gallagher, Lawrence; Means, Barbara; Padilla, Christine
US Department of Education
The availability and use of electronic student data systems for instructional improvement are rapidly changing. Federal, state, and district efforts to promote the use of data to improve instruction and student achievement are being accompanied by changes in teacher access to student data systems and data use. Nearly three-quarters of all teachers reported having access to an electronic student data system in school year 2006-07, nearly a 50 percent increase from two years earlier. Such rapid change in a two-year period is notable for American education, but a significant proportion of teachers still do not have access to the data necessary for making instructional decisions. Only half of teachers with access to a student data system report that it provides them with achievement data for the students in their classroom, or only 37 percent of teachers as a whole have achievement data for their current students from the data system. Fewer have access to achievement information more recent than the scores on the prior spring's state test or to longitudinal views of student achievement over multiple years. Of those teachers who reported having access to a student data system, a majority reported making use of it for keeping parents informed, monitoring student academic progress, and tracking individual test scores. Teachers who expressed confidence in their ability to use data and student data systems and those who felt well supported by their colleagues in this endeavor were likely to report making additional uses of data, such as identifying student skill gaps, informing changes to the curriculum, and identifying promising practices. Teachers express the desire for more professional development in using data, particularly for training in how to develop diagnostic assessments and how to adjust instruction based on diagnostic data. In addition to the need for improved access to the kinds of data that teachers can use to inform instruction and to more professional development, teachers need time to devote to examining data and making plans on the basis of that data. Lack of time set aside for these activities was cited as a barrier in both 2005 and 2007. Most teachers continue to be expected to use the data system as an extra activity, either conducted on their own time or substituted for other activities during their regular planning period. (Contains 11 footnotes and 17 exhibits.)
US Department of Education. Available from: ED Pubs. P.O. Box 1398, Jessup, MD 20794-1398. Tel: 877-433-7827; Fax: 301-470-1244; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Office of Planning, Evaluation and Policy Development (ED), Policy and Program Studies Service
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A
IES Cited: ED560820