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 Pub Number  Title  Date
REL 2016124 Can scores on an interim high school reading assessment accurately predict low performance on college readiness exams?
The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between measures of reading comprehension, decoding, and language with college-ready performance. This research was motivated by leaders in two Florida school districts interested in the extent to which performance on Florida’s interim reading assessment could be used to identify students who may not perform well on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) and ACT Plan. One of the districts primarily administers the PSAT/NMSQT and the other primarily administers the ACT Plan. Data included the 2013/14 PSAT/NMSQT or ACT Plan results for students in grade 10 from these districts, as well as their grade 9 results on the Florida Assessments for Instruction in Reading – Florida Standards (FAIR-FS). Classification and regression tree (CART) analyses formed the framework for an early warning system of risk for each PSAT/NMSQT and ACT Plan subject-area assessment. PSAT/NMSQT Critical Reading performance is best predicted in the study sample by a student’s reading comprehension skills, while PSAT/NMSQT Mathematics and Writing performance is best predicted by a student’s syntactic knowledge. Syntactic knowledge is the most important predictor of ACT Plan English, Reading, and Science in the study sample, whereas reading comprehension skills were found to best predict ACT Plan Mathematics results. Sensitivity rates (the percentage of students correctly identified as at risk) ranged from 81 percent to 89 percent correct across all of the CART models. These results provide preliminary evidence that FAIR-FS scores could be used to create an early warning system for performance on both the PSAT/NMSQT and ACT Plan. The potential success of using FAIR-FS scores as an early warning system could enable districts to identify at-risk students without adding additional testing burden, time away from instruction, or additional cost. The analyses should be replicated statewide to verify the stability of the models and the generalizability of the results to the larger Florida student population.
4/20/2016
REL 2012138 Performance in Science on the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments–Series II for Students in Grades 5 and 8
This report examines how grade 5 and grade 8 student achievement on the 2009/10 MCA–II science assessment differed by student and school characteristics (gender, eligibility for free or reduced-price lunch, special education status, race/ethnicity, and prior-year academic achievement). The study found that most of the variation in scores was associated with demographic differences among students rather than with differences between schools.

Key findings include:
  • Student achievement on the MCA–II science assessment differed across demographic subgroups, favoring male students, students not eligible for free or reduced-price lunch, non–special education students, and White students.
  • After accounting for student characteristics, science achievement tended to be higher in schools with a smaller percentage of students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch and a larger percentage of White students.
  • No school characteristics based on teacher composition were related to student science achievement after accounting for other student and school characteristics.
4/25/2012
WWC QRCS0710 WWC Quick Review of the Report "Charter School Performance in New York City"
"Charter School Performance in New York City" examined the effect of charter school attendance on annual student achievement growth in math and reading. The study analyzed data from a large sample of students in grades three through eight in New York City between 2003 and 2009.
7/7/2010
WWC QRTLSF08 WWC Quick Review of the Report "San Francisco Bay Area KIPP Schools: A Study of Early Implementation and Achievement"
This study examined whether attending a Knowledge is Power Program (KIPP) middle school improved students’ academic achievement. The study found that fifth-grade students in KIPP middle schools generally performed better on math and language arts tests than comparable students in traditional public middle schools. Effect sizes for math ranged from 0.19 to 0.86, while effect sizes for language arts ranged from –0.05 to 0.54.
11/28/2008
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