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ERIC Number: ED544565
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Apr
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
End-of-Course Exams. The Progress of Education Reform. Volume 11, Number 2
Education Commission of the States (NJ1)
In recent years, criticism of high school graduates' lack of readiness for college and work has led a number of states to raise high school graduation requirements -- particularly in terms of the number and rigor of courses students must pass. Yet states have found that without a common end-of- course measure, it is impossible to ensure that a course labeled "Algebra I" holds students to the same expectations statewide. At the same time, states with exit exams have evaluated these high-stakes assessments, wondering if new approaches such as end-of-course exams might provide fairer and more accurate accountability measures for students, schools and the state as a whole. Both of these state policy trends have resulted in the increasing adoption of end-of-course assessments at the high school level. This issue of "The Progress of Education Reform" will address the following questions: (1) What are end-of-course exams (EOCs), and how do they differ from the assessments many states have been administering to date? (2) Why the trend toward EOCs? (3) How many states administer EOCs? (4) For what purposes are these assessments used, including: (a) Are these tests aligned with "college-ready" indicators? (b) Are they used as exit exams? (5) What has been the impact on students of the transition to end-of-course assessments? What does the research say? and (6) Are there "best practices" other states can learn from? (Contains 23 endnotes.)
Education Commission of the States. ECS Distribution Center, 700 Broadway Suite 1200, Denver, CO 80203-3460. Tel: 303-299-3692; Fax: 303-296-8332; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: GE Foundation
Authoring Institution: Education Commission of the States