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ERIC Number: ED514724
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Feb
Pages: 14
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
The 2010 Brown Center Report on American Education: How Well Are American Students Learning?--An Early Release of Part III. Volume II, Number 5
Loveless, Tom
Brookings Institution
This study coded the grade level of 171 items from the number and algebra strands of the eighth-grade NAEP (National Assessment of Educational Progress) test. The Common Core standards in math were used as the coding rubric. Items from the number strand range from the first to eighth grade, with a median level of fifth grade and mean of 5.2. Items from the algebra strand range from the second to eighth grades, with a median level of sixth grade and mean of 6.3. In both strands, calculators are provided about 33 percent of the time overall and 2 and a half times more often on items from upper grades (sixth through eighth) compared with items from lower grades. Sample NAEP algebra items were presented. The items would all come from a pre-algebra course or earlier in a student's mathematics education and would not be part of a formal algebra course. The items support two criticisms. Critics of the Common Core have complained that the eighth-grade standards reflect mathematics learned prior to algebra, undermining the contemporary movement to provide "algebra for all" in eighth grade. Critics of NAEP have similarly pointed out that the eighth-grade assessment contains problems called "algebra" that are in fact pre-algebra in origin. The Common Core and NAEP share common ground--and some would say a common weakness--in how they test algebra. And yet they seem to diverge on the crucial question of content. (Contains 2 tables and 15 notes.) [This report was made possible by the generous financial support of The Brown Foundation, Inc., Houston. For "The 2009 Brown Center Report on American Education: How Well Are American Students Learning? With Sections on NAEP Trends, the Persistence of School Test Scores, and Conversion Charter Schools. Volume II, Number 4", see ED512249.]
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Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 5; Grade 6; Grade 8; Middle Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Brookings Institution, Brown Center on Education Policy
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: National Assessment of Educational Progress