Research on Baseline Assessment in Mathematics at School Entry
This paper presents findings from research investigating the skills and knowledge in Mathematics of Cypriot pupils entering primary school (Average age=5.92 (decimal years)). A performance test, which was designed to assess skills and knowledge in Mathematics identified in the Curriculum of Primary Education in Cyprus, was administered to a representative sample of pupils in Year 1 (n=835). Teachers were also asked to complete a report for each pupil. The most important findings were as follows. Firstly, the skills included in the curriculum were differentiated into those which more than 75% of pupils entering primary schools had achieved and those which more than 30% of pupils entering primary school had not achieved. Secondly, significant differences among the skills and knowledge of the whole group of pupils entering primary school have been identified. Thirdly, cluster analysis revealed five relatively homogeneous groups of pupils according to their different knowledge and skills in Mathematics. Fourthly, a correlation was identified between findings gathered from the performance test and from teachers' assessment of pupils' skills in Mathematics. Implications for the development of a national policy on baseline assessment are drawn.
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