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How Nebraska Teachers Use and Perceive Summative, Interim, and Formative Data

Region:
Central
Description:

Teachers have access to more data than ever before, including summative (state-level), interim (benchmark-level), and formative (classroom-level) assessment data. Yet research on how often and why teachers use each type of these data is scarce. The Nebraska Department of Education partnered with the Regional Educational Laboratory Central to conduct a study of teachers and principals in 353 Nebraska schools to learn about teachers’ use and perceptions of summative, interim, and formative data and inform a state-level professional learning plan to support teachers’ data use. The findings indicate that teachers used formative data more often than interim or summative data and they perceived formative data to be more useful. Teachers with the least experience (5 years or less) reported using formative data more often than did teachers with the most experience (22 years or more). Teachers’ perceptions of their competence in using data, their attitudes toward data, and their perceptions of organizational supports for data use (professional learning, principal leadership, and computer systems) were each positively associated with teachers’ instructional actions with data. When teachers reported greater competence in using data, more positive attitudes toward data, or more organizational supports for data use, they more often took instructional actions with formative and interim data. Teachers with an advanced degree reported that they felt more competent in, and positive toward, using data than did teachers with a bachelor’s degree.

Publication Type:
Descriptive Study
Online Availability:
Publication Date:
January 2021