NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ975344
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Aug
Pages: 27
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 95
ISSN: ISSN-0022-4308
The Consequences of "School Improvement": Examining the Association between Two Standardized Assessments Measuring School Improvement and Student Science Achievement
Maltese, Adam V.; Hochbein, Craig D.
Journal of Research in Science Teaching, v49 n6 p804-830 Aug 2012
For more than half a century concerns about the ability of American students to compete in a global workplace focused policymakers' attention on improving school performance generally, and student achievement in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) specifically. In its most recent form--No Child Left Behind--there is evidence this focus led to a repurposing of instructional time to dedicate more attention to tested subjects. While this meant a narrowing of the curriculum to focus on English and mathematics at the elementary level, the effects on high school curricula have been less clear and generally absent from the research literature. In this study, we sought to explore the relationship between school improvement efforts and student achievement in science and thus explore the intersection of school reform and STEM policies. We used school-level data on state standardized test scores in English and math to identify schools as either improving or declining over three consecutive years. We then compared the science achievement of students from these schools as measured by the ACT Science exams. Our findings from three consecutive cohorts, including thousands of high school students who attended 12th grade in 2008, 2009, and 2010 indicate that students attending improving schools identified by state administered standardized tests generally performed no better on a widely administered college entrance exam with tests in science, math and English. In 2010, students from schools identified as improving in English scored nearly one-half of a point lower than their peers from declining schools on both the ACT Science and Math exams. We discuss various interpretations and implications of these results and suggest areas for future research. (Contains 2 figures, 5 tables, and 2 notes.)
Wiley-Blackwell. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8598; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 12; High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Indiana
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: ACT Assessment; Indiana Statewide Testing for Educational Progress; SAT (College Admission Test)