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ERIC Number: EJ801157
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Aug
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0141-1926
Assessing Reading at Key Stage 2: SATs as Measures of Children's Inferential Abilities
Tennent, Wayne; Stainthorp, Rhona; Stuart, Morag
British Educational Research Journal, v34 n4 p431-446 Aug 2008
This article describes two studies. The first study was designed to investigate the ways in which the statutory assessments of reading for 11-year-old children in England assess inferential abilities. The second study was designed to investigate the levels of performance achieved in these tests in 2001 and 2002 by 11-year-old children attending state-funded local authority schools in one London borough. In the first study, content and questions used in the reading papers for the Standard Assessment Tasks (SATs) in the years 2001 and 2002 were analysed to see what types of inference were being assessed. This analysis suggested that the complexity involved in inference making and the variety of inference types that are made during the reading process are not adequately sampled in the SATs. Similar inadequacies are evident in the ways in which the programmes of study for literacy recommended by central government deal with inference. In the second study, scripts of completed SATs Reading papers for 2001 and 2002 were analysed to investigate the levels of inferential ability evident in scripts of children achieving different SATs levels. The analysis in this article suggests that children who only just achieve the "target" Level 4 do so with minimal use of inference skills. They are particularly weak in making inferences that require the application of background knowledge. Thus, many children who achieve the reading level (Level 4) expected of 11-year-olds are entering secondary education with insecure inference-making skills that have not been recognised. (Contains 8 tables.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Intermediate Grades
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (London)