The assessment of children in their years before school and their first years of school has been, traditionally, informal. Further, assessment of children's mathematical skills at this level has been infrequent compared to social, emotional and physical assessments. However, there are contexts where reliable, valid, standardised data from assessment in mathematics are required. This paper outlines the development of two assessment tools for mathematics that were originally developed for such contexts. Item Response Theory (IRT) analyses enabled the construction of assessment forms that address the range of abilities of 4- to 8-year-old children, and provided the scales used for constructing formative and summative reports of achievement. A description of the development of the assessment tools and the IRT analysis that provides the reporting formats are presented together with some research uses of the tools.
Field of Research
130303 Education Assessment and Evaluation 200101 Communication Studies
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