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Standards and Benchmarking

Standards and Benchmarking

What does your state/territory understand by the terms standards and benchmarking?
How are standards and benchmarks currently applied in your state/territory? (current practice)
Briefly outline the work being done in the area of standards and benchmarking in your state/territory.

What does your state/territory understand by the terms standards and benchmarking?

Teacher judgment is guided by achievement standards that are fixed reference points used to describe what is valued as important for young people to know, understand and do. The standards describe the expected qualities of student work and give a common frame of reference and a shared language to describe student achievement.

Standards-based assessment is an integral part of the teaching and learning process that is planned and ongoing.

Benchmarking in Queensland refers to a minimum standard for monitoring student achievement.

How are standards and benchmarks currently applied in Queensland? (current practice)

In Queensland, the standards are the basis for school-based assessment and inform teachers’ decisions about making on balance, consistent judgments about how well students have demonstrated what they know, understand and can do.

For Australian Curriculum learning areas, Queensland schools are required to use the Australian Curriculum achievement standards which are organised as Understanding and Skills and describe a broad sequence of expected learning, across P–10. The standard emphasises the depth of conceptual understanding, the sophistication of skills and the ability to apply essential knowledge students typically demonstrate at the end of each teaching and learning year. The achievement standard should be read in conjunction with the content descriptions.

Briefly outline the work being done in the area of standards and benchmarking in Queensland.

The Australian Curriculum achievement standards provide the basis for assessing and reporting the Australian Curriculum learning areas.

The Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) has developed standard elaborations to support teachers in making consistent and comparable judgments on a five point scale about student achievement in a folio of work using the Australian Curriculum content descriptions and achievement standards. The standard elaborations can also be used to assist teachers to develop assessment programs, individual assessments and task specific standards.

To assist teachers in their curriculum and assessment planning, the QCAA has also developed templates and exemplars for whole year and unit planning, including sample assessments and standards rubrics.

The National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) test results provide information on how students in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 are performing in the areas of literacy and numeracy, and support improvements in teaching and learning. The data from NAPLAN test results give schools and systems the ability to measure their students’ achievements against national minimum standards and student performance in other states and territories. Reports on individual student performance are provided to all students and parents/carers.

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