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ERIC Number: EJ865740
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jun
Pages: 23
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 47
ISSN: ISSN-0013-1881
A Brief History of a Testing Time: National Curriculum Assessment in England 1989-2008
Whetton, Chris
Educational Research, v51 n2 p137-159 Jun 2009
Background: National curriculum assessment (NCA) in England has been in place for nearly 20 years. It has its origins in a political desire to regulate education, holding schools accountable. However, its form and nature also reflect educational and curriculum concerns and technical assessment issues. Purpose: The aim of the article is to provide a narrative account of the development and changes in NCA in England from its initiation to 2008 and to explain the reasons for these. Sources of evidence: The sources quoted are in the public domain, but in addition to academic articles, include political biographies and published official papers. Main argument and conclusions: NCA in England has evolved over 20 years, from an attempt at a criterion-referenced system based on tasks marked by the children's own teachers through to an externally marked examination system. This change reflects the political purposes of the system for accountability, and the pressure associated with this has led to growing criticism of the effects on children and their education. Nonetheless, the results provided are widely used by the public and government, and the reasons for the survival of the system lie in both its utility and the difficulty of identifying a new system which is necessarily an improvement for all the stakeholders involved. (Contains 8 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom