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ERIC Number: EJ1097624
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 25
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0737-5328
Assessing Academic Language in an Elementary Mathematics Teacher Licensure Exam
Castellano, Katherine E.; Duckor, Brent; Wihardini, Diah; Telléz, Kip; Wilson, Mark
Teacher Education Quarterly, v43 n1 p3-27 Win 2016
With the adoption by most states of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for English language arts and literacy and for mathematics (CCSS Initiative, 2010a, 2010b) comes major changes in public education that will affect instructional practice, curriculum, and assessment across the nation. Heritage, Walqui, and Linquanti (2015) argued that the success of these policy changes will depend, in part, on several important shifts in educators' perspective on language use and language learning, such as from an individual to a socially engaged activity, from a linear process aimed at correctness and fluency to a developmental process on comprehension and communication, and from a separate area of instruction to an embedded component of subject-area activities. This relationship between language and any discipline is generally referred to as "academic language" (AL). The Performance Assessment for California Teachers (PACT) is the first assessment of teaching to include mastery of AL knowledge by teachers not specializing in teaching English Language Learners (ELLs). The PACT has not only moved from pilot to full implementation in California but has also inspired the birth of a nationwide teaching licensure exam called "edTPA" (edTPA, 2014; Sato, 2014; Stanford Center for Assessment, Learning, and Equity [SCALE], 2015). In this study, the authors investigated the validity of the internal structure of the PACT with operational data for Elementary Mathematics using multidimensional item response theory (MIRT) models. In particular, they aimed to determine which and how many distinct constructs the Elementary Mathematics PACT instrument assesses, with a particular interest in how the evolving AL domain behaves in relation to the other domains. The authors addressed this aim by determining the extent that various MIRT models fit and provide meaningful feedback about teacher candidate performance. The goal of the study is learn more about the meaning of the AL construct, and thus they focus on a single but important aspect of validity evidence, namely, the internal structure of the Elementary Mathematics PACT, which allows them to answer critical questions about the assessment of AL for elementary mathematics teacher candidates: What does it mean to be AL proficient on the PACT? Which AL tasks are more difficult than others? How, if at all, are AL tasks on the PACT related to those in other content domains?
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Institute of Education Sciences (ED)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California
IES Funded: Yes
Grant or Contract Numbers: R305B110017