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Measures of Success

  • Fiona Walls
Chapter

Abstract

In this chapter, the children’s encounters with standardised national examination systems are described. They talk about the process of sitting the examinations and the conclusions they come to about their own capabilities. In the NCEA system they were classified - and classified themselves - by examination results as Achieved, Merit or Excellence students. Some children had had to sit screening tests on entry to secondary school and the results were used to place them in ability streams. The children judged their mathematical capabilities almost solely on the results of standardised examinations, and for those whose results showed a decline, they sought explanations including lack of studying, feeling overwhelmed by the volume of material to be committed to memory or loss of interest in the subject. Most had come to believe that facility with mathematics was innate, a part of personal makeup, and that those who were good at mathematics were particularly intelligent. The case of one child with learning difficulties is examined for the ways in which the standardised examination system failed to recognise his capabilities.

Keywords

Mathematical Ability Internal Assessment Good Mathematician Smart Learner Enter Score 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

  1. Foucault M (1967) Madness and civilization. Routledge, LondonGoogle Scholar
  2. Foucault M (1984) The care of the self: the history of sexuality, vol 3. Penguin, LondonGoogle Scholar
  3. Pratt M, Fiese B (eds) (2004) Family stories and the life course across time and generations. Lawrence Erlbaum, Mahwah, NJGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.James Cook UniversityTownsvilleAustralia

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