ERIN Public Lecture: Dr Greg Thompson
The Educational Research Institute Newcastle (ERIN) invites you to a Public Lecture on:
Narratives of NAPLAN
Standardised tests like NAPLAN are not new phenomena in schools, however, this lecture argues that there is an intensification in the impact of these testing choices on school communities. Since 2008 Australian school children in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 have been sitting nation-wide standardised literacy and numeracy tests known as NAPLAN. The Australian Federal Government argues that NAPLAN contributes to improving educational outcomes through promoting accountability and transparency that will lead to improved literacy and numeracy.
Critics of standardised testing in general, and NAPLAN in particular, argue it has a negative effect on schools and learning. This can include narrowing the curriculum, forcing teachers to teach to the test (Reid, 2009), lowering the wellbeing of teachers and students (Polesel, Dulfer, & Turnbull, 2012) with no discernable improvement in the literacy and numeracy skills of students, particularly for those most disadvantaged (Barret, 2009).
This lecture will report on teacher perceptions of the impact of NAPLAN on their classrooms and schools in WA and SA. This is part of a broader research focus that proposes to hold those practices of “accountingization” embedded within much contemporary education policy to account through collecting accounts of the micro-political effects of macro-political educational reform agendas.
Barret, B. (2009). No Child Left Behind and the assault on teachers' professional practices and identities. Teaching and Teacher Education, 25 (8), 1018-1025.
Polesel, J., Dulfer, N., & Turnbull, M. (2012). The Experience of Education: The impacts of high stakes testing on school students and their families. Sydney: Whitlam Insititute.
Reid, A. (2009). Is this a revolution? A critical analysis of the Rudd government's national education agenda. Curriculum Perspectives, 29 (3), 1-13.
For further information please contact: