A new authoritative overview of national and international measures of school student achievement used in Australia has just been released.
Measures of student achievement: a quick guide is published by the Parliamentary Library which serves federal Members of Parliament.
The guide lists six national and three international assessment measures and discusses what and who is assessed, who does the assessing and how often. The report analyses the strengths and weaknesses of each. It notes that measures of student achievement are regularly used in the development and evaluation of education policy, including determining the relative achievement of sub-groups in the community, for required standards such as university entrance scores, and to compare Australian education internationally.
There is considerable national public discussion about the merits of various ways of showing how well students are being educated. This report will be valuable for the education sector but also for parents trying to work out what is best for their children and how well they are doing at school.
We believe that it is a fair, balanced and sensible summary, which considers the strengths and possible pitfalls of the various assessment measures.