ACARA news, December 2013

The 2013 NAPLAN National Report published

13 December 2013

Today the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) released the 2013 NAPLAN National Report (pdf 7.72 MB).

The National Report provides nationally comparable results for each year level (3, 5, 7 and 9) and for each test domain (reading, writing, spelling, grammar and punctuation, and numeracy). It also gives comparisons of national and state/territory achievement in each year and test domain from 2008 (2011 for persuasive writing) to 2013, and from 2012 to 2013.

Key findings from the 2013 National Report include:

  • Student achievement is stable – the National Report shows that, overall, student achievement has remained stable across 2012–13.
  • For the 2011–13 cohort, the reading gain from Year 3 to Year 5 for Indigenous students was greater than the gains for non-Indigenous students nationally.
  • Encouraging signs of sustained improvement in Year 5 reading with achievement above 2012 results for some states and territories.
  • A moderate increase in Year 3 reading – there has been an overall improvement in Year 3 reading in 2008–13, as shown by the Australian average.

Robert Randall, Chief Executive Officer of ACARA, said today, ‘These results give an understanding of how our students performed in this year’s NAPLAN assessments, which are an important tool to help improve student learning. I am pleased with the identified moderate increase in performance in Year 5 reading’.

Report of 2013 NAPLAN test incidents

13 December 2013

The annual report, which examines NAPLAN test incidents, has found very few allegations of breaches by teachers or students during the staging of the NAPLAN test in May 2013.

The Report of 2013 NAPLAN Test Incidents (pdf 455 BT), released by the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA), shows that out of more than one million students and an estimated 9500 schools participating in NAPLAN throughout Australia, there were only 43 substantiated test incidents.

Of the 43 test incidents, only three cheating breaches were substantiated – three fewer than in 2012.

Almost half of the substantiated test incidents involved improper handling of test materials. Some of the other security breaches involved the use of social media.

The findings in the report show that teachers and schools work hard to ensure the integrity of the NAPLAN tests – this fact is reinforced with an increasing number of schools reporting their own inadvertent breaches.

The transparency and concern shown by schools in reporting test incidents demonstrate their commitment to ensuring that the information they get back from the tests is as useful as possible.

ACARA, in cooperation with states and territories, continues to review the National Protocols for Test Administration to ensure they effectively support educators to administer NAPLAN tests with consistency.

The 2012 National Assessment Program – Science Literacy Public Report published

10 December 2013

ACARA is pleased to announce the release of the 2012 National Assessment Program – Science Literacy (NAP–SL) Public Report (pdf 3.23 MB). The report is available on the ACARA’s National Assessment Program (NAP) website along with the detailed technical report.

The NAP–SL Sample Assessment measures students’ science literacy, their ability to use knowledge, identify questions and draw evidence-based conclusions in order to make decisions about the natural world and the way it changes.

A representative sample of around 13 000 Year 6 students from government, Catholic and independent schools from all states and territories sat for this test.

The findings from the 2012 NAP–SL Sample Assessment presented in the Public Report provide:

a national comparison against the science literacy scale
an analysis of science literacy findings across states and territories
an analysis of science literacy across a range of sub-groups in student population.
The Public Report also provides the results of the student survey, completed by students at the same time as the assessment. The survey results provide a measure of student interest in science as well as their understanding of its relevance to everyday life.

To assist all schools in developing and assessing their students’ science literacy skills, the Science Literacy 2012 School Release Materials are now also available on the NAP website.

Differing reports on literacy and numeracy skills of young Australians

05 December 2013

A recent report by the Australian Council for Education Research (ACER) examines why we receive such differing reports on the literacy and numeracy of young Australians.

Read the entire article