OECD Reviews of Evaluation and Assessment in Education: SWEDEN - Stockholm – 7 December 2011

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Deborah Nusche …

Deborah Nusche

Policy Analyst
Education and Training Policy Division
OECD Directorate for Education

The OECD Review on Evaluation and Assessment Frameworks for Improving School Outcomes, launched in late 2009, is designed to respond to the strong interest in evaluation and assessment issues evident at national and international levels. It will provide a description of design, implementation and use of assessment and evaluation procedures in countries; analyse strengths and weaknesses of different approaches; and provide recommendations for improvement.


The Review looks at the various components of assessment and evaluation frameworks that countries use with the objective of improving student outcomes. These include student assessment, teacher appraisal, school evaluation and system evaluation. The analysis focuses on primary and secondary levels of education.

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  • 1. Image: dan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net Deborah Nusche Policy Analyst Education and Training Policy Division OECD Directorate for Education Stockholm – 7 December 2011 OECD Reviews of Evaluation and Assessment in Education: SWEDEN
  • 2. OECD Review on Evaluation and Assessment Frameworks for Improving School Outcomes
  • 3.
      • Purpose: To explore how systems of evaluation and assessment can be used to improve the quality, equity and efficiency of school education.
      • The Review will:
      • Synthesise research-based evidence on the impact of evaluation and assessment strategies and disseminate this knowledge among countries.
      • Identify innovative and successful policy initiatives and practices.
      • Facilitate exchanges of lessons and dialogue.
      • Identify policy options for governments to consider.
    OECD Review on Evaluation and Assessment Frameworks for Improving School Outcomes (2009-2012)
  • 4. OECD Review on Evaluation and Assessment Frameworks for Improving School Outcomes: SCOPE
    • The Review looks at different elements of evaluation and assessment.
      • Student assessment;
      • Teacher appraisal;
      • School evaluation;
      • System evaluation;
    • Comprehensive approach: Investigation of each component individually, as well as the coherence of the framework as a whole (including the links between the different components).
  • 5.
    • Overarching policy question: “How can assessment and evaluation policies work together more effectively to improve student outcomes in primary and secondary schools?”
    OECD Review on Evaluation and Assessment Frameworks for Improving School Outcomes: SCOPE
  • 6.
        • 24 countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium (Flemish Community), Belgium (Fr.), Canada, Czech Rep.,
        • Denmark, Finland, France, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Korea, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands,
        • New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovak Republic, Slovenia and Sweden.,
        • 12 countries: Australia, Belgium (Flemish Community), Chile, Czech Republic,
        • Denmark, Luxembourg, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Slovak Republic
        • and Sweden.
  • 7.
      • Outputs:
        • 24 Country Background Reports: 9 are completed, more to come soon.
        • 12 Country Reviews : AUS, DNK, NOR, SWE completed, more to come soon.
        • 12 Literature Reviews /conceptual papers on issues including: formative and summative assessment; teacher evaluation; school evaluation; education standards; use of results.
        • Final Comparative Report: to be completed in 2012
    OECD Review on Evaluation and Assessment Frameworks for Improving School Outcomes: OUTPUTS
      • All outputs are available at www.oecd.org/edu/evaluationpolicy
  • 8. OECD Review on Evaluation and Assessment Frameworks for Improving School Outcomes
  • 9. The Country Review visit to Sweden (May 2010)
    • Sweden: first Country Review of the OECD project
    • Preparatory work: data analysis, bringing existing OECD work on Sweden together
    • Country background report prepared by Sweden
    • Formation of an expert team
    • 6 day visit to Sweden
      • Meetings with the national authorities and all key stakeholder groups
      • Visits to 4 municipalities and 6 schools
      • In each school: group meetings with the leadership team, teachers and students
  • 10. OECD Review on Evaluation and Assessment Frameworks for Improving School Outcomes
  • 11. Evaluation and assessment framework Structure of the OECD Review report for Sweden
      • The Evaluation and Assessment Framework
      • Student assessment
      • Teacher appraisal
      • School evaluation
      • System evaluation
    System School Classroom Student assessment Teacher appraisal School evaluation System evaluation
  • 12. The Evaluation and assessment framework
  • 13.
      • Sweden’s approach to evaluation and assessment is built on high trust system fostering ownership, participation and commitment :
        • Students at the centre: students are part of their own assessment; student feedback is valued and contributes to teacher appraisal and school evaluation
        • Teacher professionalism: teachers are trusted professionals; strong focus on teacher-based assessment in the classroom; teachers score national tests ;
        • A strong focus on school self evaluation: conceived as a collaborative process; availability of self-evaluation tools
      • … complemented with national goals and feedback mechanisms
        • A focus on providing clear expectations from the centre
        • Working towards a data-rich environment: rich feedback for schools
        • Transparency in monitoring and reporting
    Evaluation and assessment framework: Strengths & Challenges
  • 14. School evaluation System evaluation Student assessment Evaluation and assessment framework: Key elements are well established…
    • Responsibility
    Instruments Student assessment Teachers With support from NAE School evaluation School Municipality National Inspectorate Student assessment Curriculum, syllabi, criteria National tests in Years 3,5,9 and upper secondary National test bank School evaluation School self-evaluation tools Municipal quality reports Inspection visits & report s System evaluation International student assessments National assessments Thematic reviews System evaluation Ministry NAE Inspectorate … BUT more work is necessary to integrate them in a coherent framework Teacher appraisal Teacher appraisal School leader Evaluation and assessment framework
  • 15. Student assessment
  • 16.
      • Sweden has a balanced approach to student assessment…
      • Broad approach to assessment with a mix of classroom-based assessments and performance-based national assessments
      • … .but lacks an externally validated measure of student performance
      • But all types of assessment are corrected and graded by students’ own teachers
      • Variability in teachers’ assessment skills
      • Issues of fairness in student assessment and grading
      • Limits to the use of aggregate test scores as measures of school, municipality and system performance
    Individual components: Strengths & Challenges System School Classroom Student assessment Teacher appraisal School evaluation System evaluation
  • 17. Teacher appraisal
  • 18.
      • Swedish teachers are trusted professionals…
      • Teachers have a high degree of autonomy
      • Appraisal and salary progression is up to individual school leaders
      • … but do not have sufficient opportunities for professional feedback
      • Teacher appraisal is not regulated by law
      • There are no professional standards for teachers
      • Little guidance and support to enhance teacher appraisal
      • Limited career progression opportunities
    Individual components: Strengths & Challenges System School Classroom Student assessment Teacher appraisal School evaluation System evaluation
  • 19. School evaluation
  • 20.
      • There has been strong investment in school evaluation…
      • School evaluation builds on a mix of school self-evaluation, municipal school evaluation and national inspections
      • A variety of quantitative and qualitative feedback
      • … but there are large variations in local capacity
      • Great variability in municipal evaluation and school self-evaluation approaches
      • Traditions of professional autonomy
      • Shift towards greater accountability might jeopardise the improvement function
    Individual components: Strengths & Challenges System School Classroom Student assessment Teacher appraisal School evaluation System evaluation
  • 21. System evaluation
  • 22.
      • Education system evaluation is well established…
      • Education system performance is monitored through a broad range of tools
      • … but data collection and presentation could be further improved
      • National data on learning outcomes relies on teacher grading
      • Since teacher grading is uneven, the use of grades as measures of municipality and system performance is not appropriate
      • Data presentation could be optimised for use by stakeholders
    Individual components: Strengths & Challenges System School Classroom Student assessment Teacher appraisal School evaluation System evaluation
  • 23. Summary of key issues
      • Developing a coherent framework for evaluation and assessment
      • Building teachers’ assessment capacity and increasing the reliability of national assessments
      • Establishing teacher appraisal as an integral part of the evaluation and assessment framework
      • Articulating school self-evaluation and external school evaluation
      • Strengthening education system monitoring
  • 24. Where to go from here? 5 suggestions
  • 25. School evaluation System evaluation Student assessment Suggested next steps (1): Establish a strategic plan or framework for E&A Take stock and map all the existing elements of E&A and clarify purposes Clarify responsibilities and encourage cooperation Follow up with competency descriptions and training Identify underdeveloped elements and missing links (e.g. how teacher appraisal and school evaluation can reinforce each other) Map existing tools and support to optimise practices Teacher appraisal The improvement of teaching and learning should be at the centre
  • 26. School evaluation System evaluation School principal appraisal Student assessment Develop a framework of teaching standards Can help to align key elements of the teaching profession such as initial training, registration, professional development, regular appraisal and career advancement Articulate teacher appraisal and school evaluation
    • Strengthen developmental appraisal
    • -Internal school process
    • Linked with PD and school development
    Suggested next steps (2) : Develop teacher appraisal as part of the E&A framework
    • Introduce a system of teacher registration to determine career-progression
    • Registration at key stages in the career
    • More summative
    • Stronger external component
    Teacher appraisal Hold school principals accountable for teacher appraisal
  • 27. Teacher appraisal Country Examples? Chile: The Good Teaching Framework provides clear guidance to all aspects of the teaching profession Australia: Appraisal gives access to Advanced Skills Teaching Positions New Zealand: professional body of teachers holds the lead role in defining teacher standards
  • 28. School evaluation System evaluation Student assessment Suggested next steps (3): Increase the reliability of national assessments
    • Make the existing tests more reliable
    • Initial teacher training
    • Professional development
    • Systematic moderation
    Consider adaptations in test design “ complex assessments” Consider developing a national monitoring sample survey Teacher appraisal
  • 29. Increase reliability of national assessments Country Examples? New Zealand: The National Education Monitoring Project Denmark: Computer-based assessments provide rapid feedback Queensland, Australia: Moderated internal assessments
  • 30. School evaluation Self evaluation Municipal evaluation Inspections System evaluation Student assessment Suggested next steps (4): Further develop internal and external school evaluation Maintain and reinforce the improvement focus Learn from successful schools across Sweden To identify these, need to develop reliable national assessment system Continue to refine quality indicators for school evaluation Teacher appraisal Further strengthen schools’ self evaluation capacities Provide additional training resources Continue to focus inspections on this aspect
  • 31. School evaluation Country Examples? Hong Kong Learning from innovating schools New Zealand: collaborative school evaluation model Scotland: Web-based resources for school self-evaluation, based on the Inspectorate’s Evaluation framework
  • 32. School evaluation System evaluation Municipal Central Student assessment Suggested next steps (5): Strengthen education system monitoring and mobilise existing data Further build evaluation capacity at central and municipal levels - Knowledge management nationally - Capacity building at the municipal level Improve mobilisation of existing information Explore ways to more reliably monitor education outcomes at the system level Teacher appraisal
  • 33.
      • Pointers for policy development
      • Map out overall framework
      • Include missing components (esp. teacher appraisal)
      • Ensure articulation between components (e.g. teacher appraisal and school evaluation; school self-evaluation and external evaluation)
      • Increase reliability of national assessment system
      • Further develop internal and external school evaluation
      • Strengthen national system monitoring
    To conclude: completing the evaluation and assessment framework
  • 34. Image: dan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net Thank you! [email_address] www.oecd.org/edu/evaluationpolicy