Naplan Testing: “does More Harm Than Good”

New research study raises questions about the effects of the National Assessment Program– Literacy And Numeracy (NAPLAN) on the health and wellbeing of students and on positive teaching and discovering approaches. NAPLAN was introduced to enhance literacy and numeracy in Australian primary and secondary schools, but the question has to be asked: is it worth it?

The suite of tests that comprise NAPLAN, administered in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9, are intended to determine 3 things: initially, how individual students are carrying out; 2nd, the level to which nationwide literacy and numeracy benchmarks are being achieved at each school; and third, how well curricula are working in Australian schools.

7 years of NAPLAN testing have actually produced mixed results.

Our group spent time in five school communities (in Victoria and New South Wales) where we spoke with trainees, moms and dads, instructors and school principals. The report is possibly the most significant to this day as it is the first to study the effect on trainees.

Exactly what did the research discover?

The findings reveal that, versus its specified goals, NAPLAN is at best a blunt tool.

The outcomes aren’t universally unfavorable. Some teachers find the results informative, there is evidence that in some schools NAPLAN results have been a trigger to execute literacy and numeracy programs, and some moms and dads appreciate the straightforward evaluation of their children’s accomplishment levels.

However, the research study shows that NAPLAN is plagued by unfavorable impacts on student wellbeing and knowing. Our previous study of instructors discovered that 90% of teachers reported that students felt stressed out prior to taking the test.

This study of student experiences of NAPLAN accentuates the need to take trainee wellness into account in educational initiatives. While Australian instructional policies do not explicitly state all measures need to remain in the best interests of the kids, they need to comply with the ethical practice of “doing no harm”.

The numerous unintended consequences of NAPLAN stem from the failure to take the interests of all trainees seriously. The inflexible and official style of NAPLAN is not conducive to learning and teaching techniques that stress deep learning.

NAPLAN, which utilizes language and a design of testing that is frequently foreign to trainees, wanders off from the systems integrated in class that promote knowing.

Our report found that a bulk of trainees did not like NAPLAN and were not sure of its purpose. A bulk reported sensations of tension.

Those who were struggling in mathematics and/or literacy were the most nervous about whether they would fail. Worryingly, schools reported that these trainees (whom the tests are designed to help) were often the ones least likely to sit the tests. A smaller proportion reported particular stress-related conditions such as sleeping disorders, hyperventilation, excessive sweating, nail biting, headaches, stomach pains and migraines.

Majority desire NAPLAN scrapped

When asked what message they want to give to the Australian federal government about NAPLAN, a majority of participants recommended that it needs to be ditched.

Lots of also made tips about how NAPLAN could be made more relevant (through the usage of much better examples and more accessible language) and how to lower levels of stress. Those in favour of NAPLAN concentrated on the opportunity it offers trainees to practise the art of sitting tests.

The comprehensive analysis of trainees’ experiences in 5 diverse Australian communities included in our report provides the very first systematic analysis of the effect of NAPLAN testing on trainees. It strengthens the views of lots of moms and dads, school principals and instructors: that NAPLAN has substantial unexpected consequences, which have an unfavorable influence on the quality of learning and student wellness.

NAPLAN testing is created to improve the quality of education young individuals receive in Australia, its application, misuses and uses mean that it undermines quality education and does harm that is not in the finest interests of Australian kids.