ECD 541 ASU Standardized Testing in Early Childhood Education Paper

timer Asked: Apr 16th, 2019
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Question Description

Reflect on the lesson materials regarding standardized assessments, previous lesson materials on content standards, and what you know about the push for accountability in education. Examine the cartoon then answer the following in 3-4 paragraphs:

  • What point do you think the illustrator is trying to make in this cartoon?
  • What opinions do you now hold about standardized testing in early childhood? (no right or wrong opinion)
  • Using what you know about assessment, describe an assessment system that you feel could best address the issue of accountability in early childhood education. (This is opinion so no right or wrong answers).

CARTOON ADDED AS ATTACHMENT along with the chapter for the week.

Websites from this week lesson

***Please use readings to cite APA for citations.

ECD 541 ASU Standardized Testing in Early Childhood Education Paper
ECD 541 ASU Standardized Testing in Early Childhood Education Paper
ECD 541 ASU Standardized Testing in Early Childhood Education Paper
ECD 541 ASU Standardized Testing in Early Childhood Education Paper
ECD 541 ASU Standardized Testing in Early Childhood Education Paper
ECD 541 ASU Standardized Testing in Early Childhood Education Paper
ECD 541 ASU Standardized Testing in Early Childhood Education Paper
ECD 541 ASU Standardized Testing in Early Childhood Education Paper
ECD 541 ASU Standardized Testing in Early Childhood Education Paper

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Studies in Educational Evaluation 55 (2017) 9–18 Contents lists available at ScienceDirect Studies in Educational Evaluation journal homepage: Kindergarten standardized testing and reading achievement in the U.S.: Evidence from the early childhood longitudinal study☆ MARK Haesung Im Ewha Womans University, Banpo Raemian Firstage 104-602, 275 Banpo-daero, Seocho-gu, Seoul, Republic of Korea A R T I C L E I N F O A B S T R A C T Keywords: Standardized testing Kindergarten Reading achievement & reading instruction Early childhood longitudinal studykindergarten (ECLS-K) 2010–2011 Drawing from data use theory (i.e., a theory for making data-driven educational decisions), the present study sought to understand how frequency of standardized testing is related to student learning, mediated by reading instruction, after controlling for child-level (e.g., gender, race/ethnicity) and school-level covariates (e.g., private/public, proportion of students eligible for free lunch). Using data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study Kindergarten Cohort of 2010–2011, the sample included 12,241 children attending 1067 kindergartens in the U.S. findings from a multilevel structural equation mediation model suggest that the frequency of state/local standardized testing in kindergarten did not have a direct effect on reading achievement near the end of kindergarten, after controlling for covariates. However, the amount and type of reading instruction mediated the relationship between the frequency of testing and reading achievement, after controlling for covariates. The implications for policy and practice on the use of standardized tests in kindergarten are discussed. 1. Introduction After the inception of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB, 2001), assessment-driven accountability began to play an increasingly critical role in shaping curricular and instructional practice in the United States (Ravitch, 2011). The common elements of accountability included standards, assessments, and public reporting policies to hold schools and teachers accountable for raising student performance (Goertz & Duffy, 2000). The NCLB utilized standardized tests as a catalyst to improve instruction (Hanushek & Raymond, 2005). By definition, standardized tests are testing instruments that are administered, scored, and interpreted in a uniform manner (Martella, 2010). While some standardized tests are designed based on state content standards (e.g., benchmark tests), other types of standardized tests are developed without referencing the state content standards (Goldstein & Flake, 2016; McMillan, 2013). Typically, those tests include end of year standardized tests that are designed based on state content standards, high-stakes standardized tests, annual statewide accountability tests, interim tests developed by districts, and commercially produced tests (Goldstein & Flake, 2016). Standardized testing has increasingly become a key instructional instrument in the field of early childhood education (Hirsh-Pasek, Golinkoff, Berk, & Singer, 2009; National Research Council, 2008). More than 70% of young children in the U.S. completed standardized tests in kindergarten at least once in the 2010–2011 academic year ☆ (Bassok, Latham, & Rorem, 2016). Increasing numbers of states are developing pre-kindergarten standardized assessments for school readiness. As such, the use of standardized tests during early childhood has been at the center of the educational debate over the last two decades. Proponents of standardized testing believe that these scores can be used for monitoring and evaluating teaching effectiveness and students’ learning outcomes (Hutchinson, & Young, 2011). They believe testing will raise student performance by making teachers more accountable for their teaching (Crocker, 2005; The National Early Childhood Accountability Task Force, 2007). Furthermore, advocates of standardized tests also believe that test scores can be used to improve teaching effectiveness through targeted professional development (Crocker, 2005). Conversely, scholars and experts have published a substantial amount of criticisms, warnings, and guidelines to inform the direction for the use of standardized tests during early childhood (Gullo & Hughes, 2011; Wilson, 2009). In 2003, the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) announced a position statement that argued that standardized testing is inappropriate for young children, due to their distinct nature, developmental stage, and rapid growth. Essentially, this statement purports that young children are not cognitively ready to understand the goals of standardized tests and their process (Goldstein & Flake, 2016; Meisels, 2007; Schultz et al., 2007). A specific level of language skills, possibly beyond the reach of many young children, is required to successfully The data provided in the current manuscript are part of a larger doctoral dissertation study. E-mail address: Received 31 October 2016; Accepted 11 May 2017 Available online 23 May 2017 0191-491X/ © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Studies in Educational Evaluation 55 (2017) 9–18 H. Im Fig. 1. A Conceptual Model Relating Standardized Testing to Student Achievement. 2006; Spillane, 2012). Data use theory offers insight into why certain kindergartens may or may not utilize standardized test scores for student learning (Brunner et al., 2005; Young, 2006). According to this theory, there are three stages of data-driven decision making for student learning (Mandinach, Honey, & Light, 2006). Here, data refers to all types, including information about specific programs, family backgrounds of students, student behavior, attendance, and assessment scores. At the first stage, data exists in a raw state without meaning. At this point, teachers do not use assessment data to improve instruction. At the second stage, teachers utilize data as “information” to understand the educational context and their students. However, they do not use this information to guide their instruction. Finally, at the third stage, teachers utilize data as “knowledge” to modify, or refine their instruction. This continuum of data utilization provides insight into why the frequency of testing may or may not be related to student learning mediated by teachers’ use of data (Hamilton et al., 2009; Marsh et al., 2006). Data use theory helps us to understand the complexity of datadriven decision making practices at multiple levels (Coburn & Talbert, 2006; Kerr et al., 2006). According to Spillane (2012), data-based decision-making is influenced not only by individual teachers’ cognitions, but is also affected by organizational norms at the school level. At an individual level, there are multiple factors that influence teachers’ utilization of assessment data. For example, if kindergarten teachers did not regard standardized tests as valid and reliable instruments for assessing young children, those kindergarten teachers would be more likely to disregard test scores as a means for making instructional decisions (Bauml, 2016; Brown & Goldstein, 2013; Pyle & DeLuca, 2013). Another important factor that impacts kindergarten teachers’ use of data is called “assessment literacy,” which denotes teachers’ ability to collect, analyze, and utilize all types of data for student learning (Hamilton et al., 2009). Teachers’ pedagogical content knowledge also plays a key role in making instructional decision based on the data (Mandinach & Gummer, 2015). For example, when kindergarten teachers believe in a “whole language” approach to reading instruction, these teachers are more likely to allocate more instruction time for whole language reading instruction, when their students do not perform well on reading assessments. Similarly, advocates of “phonics” would complete standardized tests. Further, younger children are more easily distracted and influenced by their emotional status or physical needs such as hunger or fatigue (Charlesworth, Fleege, & Weitman, 1994; NAEYC, 2003). Hence, several national organizations and scholars argue that young children should not complete standardized testing before the end of third grade (NAEYC, 2003; National Association of Early Childhood Specialists in State Department of Education, 2000; Schultz et al., 2007; Solley, 2007). Despite the debate on the use of standardized tests during early childhood, the link between these tests and learning outcomes of young children has been tenuous at best, due to the lack of studies examining early childhood education (Bauml, 2016; Pyle & DeLuca, 2013; Solley, 2007). Specifically, while some studies have investigated the connection between standardized testing and student achievement during middle childhood and early adolescence (Amrein & Berliner, 2002; Dee & Jacobs, 2011; Rosenshine, 2003), fewer empirical studies have explored this relationship during early childhood (Bauml, 2016; Boat et al., 2005; Charlesworth et al., 1994; Hatch & Grieshaber, 2002; Rous, McCormick, Gooden, & Townley, 2007). Additionally, these early childhood studies have exhibited limited generalizability, due to their small sample sizes and qualitative research designs. Even though the administration of standardized tests in kindergarten can result in a significant change in reading instruction (Au, 2007; Gullo & Hughes, 2011; Hirsh-Pasek et al., 2009; Merki, 2011; Miller & Almon, 2009), the existing body of research has primarily focused on direct relationships between standardized testing and students’ academic outcomes, without investigating the mediating role of instructional practices. Thus, the current study examined both the direct and indirect effects of standardized tests on kindergarten children’s reading achievement and the mediating role of the amount and types of reading instruction. 1.1. Theoretical and conceptual framework Drawing from data use theory, the current study sought to investigate the connection between the frequency of standardized testing and reading achievement in kindergarteners, as mediated by reading instructional practice (Hamilton et al., 2009; Marsh et al., 10 Studies in Educational Evaluation 55 (2017) 9–18 H. Im balanced approach. First, phonics is explicit instruction in the form and sounds of letters used to decode written language. The benefits of explicit phonics instruction, particularly on children with low literacy, have been well-documented (Juel & Minden-Cupp, 2000; Morrison & Connnor, & Bachman, 2006; Xue & Meisels, 2004). Next, whole language highlights the importance of learning language as a whole, in a meaningful context, without the need for explicit instruction (Goodman & Goodman, 2009; Pearson, 2004). Children learn to read and write by engaging in self-selected projects, such as writing, retelling stories, and performing plays and skits (Sonnenschein et al., 2010; Xue & Meisels, 2004). Research generally suggests that whole language is generally associated with improved reading achievement (Krashen, 2002; Sonnenschein et al., 2010), except in low-achieving children (Morrison & Connor, 2002; Morrison et al., 2006; Sonnenschein et al., 2010; Xue & Meisels, 2004). Finally, a balanced approach posits that phonics can be fostered in context by reading predictable books, stories, rhymes, and songs (Adams, 1990; Dahl et al., 1999; Farris, Fuhler, & Walther, 2004; Hornsby & Wilson, 2010; Roberts & Meiring, 2006). Going beyond the dichotomy of phonics versus whole language, an experimental study indicated that children who learned phonemes within contextualized instruction displayed higher reading achievement when compared to children in a control group who learned phonemes in isolation (Bitter, O’Day, Gubbins, & Socias, 2009; Dahl et al., 1999; Donat, 2006). A plethora of studies have indicated that curricular decisions made within kindergartens are constrained by standardized tests (Bassok et al., 2016; Bauml, 2016; Gallant, 2009; Gullo & Hughes, 2011; HirshPasek et al., 2009). Although there is a general consensus that testing policy has a tremendous impact on the types of early reading instruction, relatively few studies have provided empirical evidence based on investigating the mediating role of reading instruction. On the one hand, studies have reported that testing policy places greater emphasis on phonics at the expense of whole language (Afflerbach, 2011; Pearson, 2004). In fact, kindergarten teachers in 2009 reported more emphasis on explicit instruction (e.g., worksheets and phonics workbooks), to prepare for state standardized tests compared to reading instruction in 1994 (Gallant, 2009; Lipson, Goldhaber, Daniels, & Sortino, 1994). On the other hand, researchers have also reported that some teachers utilize whole language despite the pressure to teach to the test with direct instruction (Brown & Goldstein, 2013). Given that the frequency of standardized testing may have a serious impact on kindergarten reading instruction, there is a need for evidence of the mechanism through which school-level testing policy affects young children’s learning outcomes mediated by reading instructional practices. increase instruction time with phonics instruction based on the analysis of the same assessment data. At the school-level, when a school encourages their teachers to use data for student learning, these teachers are more likely to use assessment data to collectively modify their instruction (Kerr et al., 2006; Means et al., 2009; Spillane, 2012). In contrast, when a school focuses on accountability, teachers at that school are less likely to use data to facilitate student learning (Schildkamp & Kuiper, 2010; Shen & Cooley, 2008: Young, 2006). In light of data use theory, the conceptual framework outlined in Fig. 1 describes how the frequency of standardized testing in kindergarten impacts children’s reading achievement both directly and indirectly through reading instruction. 1.2. Role of standardized testing in children’s reading achievement The existing body of literature that has sought to investigate the links between standardized testing and reading achievement in middle childhood is laden with mixed findings. Some studies suggest that states with high-stakes testing (i.e., externally mandated standardized tests that are attached with serious consequences for teachers, schools, and students) perform better in fourth grade reading achievement compared to states without this testing policy (Hanushek & Raymond, 2005; Kober et al., 2008; Rosenshine, 2003). Other researchers have found that accountability policy was not related to greater fourth grade reading achievement (Amrein & Berliner, 2002; Dee & Jacob, 2011; Lee & Reeves, 2012; Nichols et al., 2006). According to comparative, interrupted time-series analyses of 1990–2009 NAEP state assessment data, no improvement was noted in average fourth grade reading achievement after the implementation of NCLB (Lee & Reeves, 2012). In fact, investment in statewide educational resources (e.g., investment in qualified teachers and small class size) was found to be more effective in promoting student achievement. Amrein and Berliner (2002) also found that 46% of the states with highstakes testing exhibited fourth grade reading gains. This may have been because many states intentionally excluded English Language Learners and students with special needs. However, the application of empirical findings from middle childhood toward young children requires caution because of the distinct characteristics of early childhood (NAEYC (2003); Schultz et al., 2007; Solley, 2007). 1.3. Associations among standardized testing, reading instruction, and reading achievements Studies have indicated that the use of standardized tests in kindergarten can impact the landscape of reading instruction in significant ways (Hirsh-Pasek et al., 2009; Kontovourki, 2009). Generally, many scholars argue that testing policy has a tremendous impact on both the types and amount of reading instruction. Studies have indicated that administering standardized tests in kindergarten is associated with increased reading instruction time (Bassok et al., 2016; McMurrer & Kober, 2007; Miller & Almon, 2009). This increase in reading instruction time has been shown to be devoted primarily to test preparation, that is, teaching to the test with decontextualized instruction (Gallant, 2009; Kontovourki, 2009). Not surprisingly, research has indicated that increased reading instruction time is associated with greater gains in reading achievement (Cavanaugh, Kim, Wanzek, & Vaughn, 2004; Chatterji, 2005; Harn, LinanThompson, & Roberts, 2008; Simmons et al., 2007; Sonnenschein, Stapleton, & Benson, 2010). However, relatively little research has examined how the effect of testing policy on students’ reading achievement is mediated by reading instruction time. Generally, there is a consensus that the types of instruction make a significant difference in supporting children to read and write (Afflerbach, 2011; Pearson, 2004). In this study, reading instruction was categorized into three types, by its orientation towards meaning versus decoding skills: (1) phonics, (2) whole language, and (3) a 1.4. Present study To fill the gap within the literature, the present study investigated the direct and indirect effects of kindergarten standardized testing on reading achievement, with nationally representative data. To the best of the author’s knowledge, no research has investigated both direct and indirect effects of school-level standardized tests on young children’s learning outcomes in kindergarten. With data use theory, the present study will provide empirical evidence of the process through which the frequency of kindergarten standardized testing impacts reading achievement, as well as the mediation effects of the amount and types of reading instruction. The research questions are as follows: • Is the frequency of standardized testing in kindergarten directly • 11 associated with children’s reading achievement at the end of kindergarten, after controlling for student-level and school-level covariates? Does the amount and types of reading instruction in kindergarten mediate the relationship between the frequency of standardized testing and children’s reading achievement near the end of kinder- Studies in Educational Evaluation 55 (2017) 9–18 H. Im local standardized tests more than one time a month. garten? 2. Methods 2.2.2. Types of kindergarten reading instruction Kindergarten teachers were asked what types of reading instruction they utilized via a 17-item teacher questionnaire in the spring of 2011. These 17 items included, “how often do children in this class do each of the following reading activities, such as matching letters to sound, identifying the main idea and parts of a story, communicating complete ideas orally?” Kindergarten teachers responded to all survey items using a 6-point Likert scale (1 = never, 2 = once a month or less, 3 = two or three times a month, 4 = once or twice a week, 5 = three or four times a week, 6 = daily). The types of reading instruction at the school level were created based on the factor structures previously reported by researchers, using ECLS-K data (Sonnenschein et al., 2010; Xue & Meisels, 2004). The three-factor model from a confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) included whole language (6 items), phonics (3 items), and a balanced approach (3 items). Detailed information about the three factors are documented in the result section and Fig. 2. 2.1. Data and sample In this study, data were selected from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Kindergarten Cohort of 2010–2011 (ECLS-K), which is a nationally representativ ...
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School: UC Berkeley



Early Childhood Education
Student’s Name
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Standardized Testing in Early Childhood Education
In this cartoon, the illustrator is trying to make two points. The first is that we should
have different standards for assessing different types of students. There is a need to develop a
different system for assessing different students because they have different strengths and
weaknesses and it is not fair to use the same standards of assessments for the students. For
example, in this cartoon, the monkey will not have any problem in climbing the tree because
it has the required skills and abilities to climb the tree. However, other animals such as the
fish and elephants cannot climb the tree. Therefore, they will fail the test while the monkey
will highly pass the test (Im, 2017). The second point that the illustrator is trying to make is
that students should have the same method of assessment. Students should have the same
assessment method in that if the students’ abilities are assessed by their ability to write a
persuasive essay, then all stude...

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awesome work thanks

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