Effect on reading test scores when teachers are provided information that relates local curriculum documents to the test

Michael Bernard Zellmer, Marquette University


The purpose of this study was to measure the effects on the reading test scores of third grade students whose teachers were provided information that related their local reading curriculum documents to the mandatory state reading test. This posttest-only control group study was conducted by using random selection of school districts and random assignment of third grade teachers to experimental and control groups. Access to district-specific information about the test was the only variable that differentiated the groups. Teachers in this six-month study provided a variety of quantitative and qualitative information, including student test scores. Findings showed that the test scores in the overall experimental and control groups were not significantly different. The classroom, teacher-determined reading levels, and the interaction between the use and non-use of the information were shown to account for significant amounts of test score variance. Teacher responses on questionnaires provided evidence that teachers in both groups had a similar approach to reading in at least some areas. There is evidence that the state test is having an effect on reading instruction in third grade classrooms in that teachers appear to be considering the test in their planning and teaching. The method of connecting curriculum documents with instruction and the test was general compared with detailed curriculum alignment techniques. The findings indicated that simply providing teachers with information that relates local reading curriculum documents to the test did not lead to statistically significant differences in test scores between the groups. There is evidence that teachers' use of the best means available to them to determine student reading levels in the beginning of the school year can be accurate predictors of reading test scores. This early knowledge can be helpful for teacher planning. Based the findings, several recommendations are made for further research about forming useful connections between curriculum documents, teaching and assessments.

Recommended Citation

Zellmer, Michael Bernard, "Effect on reading test scores when teachers are provided information that relates local curriculum documents to the test" (1997). Dissertations (1962 - 2010) Access via Proquest Digital Dissertations. AAI9823993.