In the article, "No Longer a Year Behind," Valerie Stokes discusses how beneficial it is if schools adopt the Measure of Academic Progress (MAP) program. This program allows schools to test their students as many as four times a year in different areas. Rather than consisting of a written test that the students have to fill out, this test is a computer generated test. Students who take the test are asked questions that are at a lower level. Then, as the student answers questions, the computer generates questions that are easier or harder, depending on their level. This allows the results to record the true level of the student based on their abilities.
The teachers are then able to use the results to determine where the student needs more attention and aid. The computer results can precisely determine what areas the student is behind and where the student is excelling. Furthermore, the school can use this data by looking at the accumulation of all the test results to discover what weaknesses and strengths the school has as a team. The testing results will determine what areas the school needs to pull more resources in to better meet the standards.
1. How many schools use the MAP program? I would assume that only a few schools use this program, but I feel that its usage will increase over time.
2. How effectively does the computer generate the appropriate test for each student? The computer generates fairly accurate results. It has the ability to narrow down a student's level more accurately than a written test.
I feel that this is an excellent program because it closely monitors students and what they have learned. It is an ongoing assessment that serves as a tool to better enhance the learning experience for the children and the school has a whole.
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