Outcome-based report cards represent teacher judgments about student progress as determined by comparing the student's work against curricular outcomes. The outcome-based report card has become an important tool for student assessment, evaluation, and reporting. Because parents have an important role to play in supporting student learning, parental support and understanding of this new educational tool is critical. In 2009, the Yellowknife Education District No.1, in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories in Canada implemented the outcome-based report card to report assessment data of students in kindergarten to Grade 8. This qualitative research single case study explored parental support for and understanding of the outcome-based report card in this rural Canadian educational district. Data was collected using four focus groups, each made up of 4-6 parents of students in Grades 4-8. To confirm and validate the results, data from focus group process was triangulated with relevant historical/archival descriptive summaries and qualitative data retrieved from parent surveys in Yellowknife Education District No.1. Results of this study show that parents have a desire to know about the outcome-based report card and how it connects to formats of which they were more familiar (like the letter grade or percentage systems). Parents described a need for plain language alternatives for complex educational terms, phrases, and references. Parents expressed the need for personalized comments to describe individual student capabilities, and they desired grading level system that indicates student progress. Results from this study converge on a number of recommendations, including one that encourages leaders within the Yellowknife Education District No.1 to support additional research on the parental acceptance of the outcome-based report card once the recommendations for the practical applications of this case study have been acted upon. Further research could focus on the application of the outcome-based report card to engage students in self-assessment, increase motivation, and goal setting. This case study on the topic of parental support for and understanding of the outcome-based report card could be considered the starting point for future studies around how to realize the full benefits of formative assessment as it relates to grading and reporting.
|Advisor:||McNamara, Patrick, Givan, Aaron|
|Department:||School of Education|
|School Location:||United States -- Arizona|
|Source:||DAI-A 76/05(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Educational evaluation, School administration|
|Keywords:||Assessment, Grading, Outcome-based, Parent, Report cards, Standards-based|
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