Educational measurement in the Norwegian context
The background for the establishment of CEMO was a perceived need for strengthening the research capacity in Norway in the field of educational measurement. Within this thematic strand, the research group intends to address this need by establishing research activities explicitly targeting assessments in primary and secondary school in Norway. Crucial challenges are:
- Longitudinal data is not available in Norway although a white paper on the future of schooling in Norway concluded in 2016 that tracking student progression was urgently needed. Following the principles of a multi-sample sequence design, it should be possible to link data over longer periods of time building on the already existing national assessments for 5th, 8th and 9th grade.
- International and national assessments are actively used for monitoring purposes in Norway. The results are often used, or at least referred to, when policy changes are suggested, decided and implemented. Interpretations of the measures usually assume that they reflect students’ true abilities. However, a range of threats to the validity of the interpretations need systematic study.
- Norway has a well-developed system with register data where the individual students and schools can in principle be linked and monitored over time. However, this system has not yet been used sufficiently for research purposes.
Against this background, three areas of research have been identified as particularly relevant for this thematic strand: linking national assessments over grades and years to measure student progress and trends in student progress over a longer time frame, linking cognitive outcomes of schooling in terms of test scores with affective-motivational outcomes from repeated student surveys to receive a more holistic picture of student progress, and linking student assessment and survey data to register data for examining the validity of low-stakes assessments for system-wide monitoring.