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This publication presents information derived from the fourth Assessment of Achievement Programme (AAP), a survey of students' attainment in science (Scotland, 1996). The main AAP objectives are to describe national levels of attainment and to provide evidence of changes in these levels over time. This booklet was developed primarily as an information resource for teachers to serve as a tool for improving teaching and learning. Assessment tasks were used with a sample of students at three stages: (1) Primary 4; (2) Primary 7; and (3) Secondary 2. The tasks were matched against Strands, Targets and Levels from the science component of National Guidelines for Environmental Studies. In this way the performance of students at different levels could be assessed in the five Strands: (1) Knowledge and Understanding; (2) Planning; (3) Collecting Evidence; (4) Recording and Presenting; and (5) Interpreting and Evaluating. Averaged scores are presented by grade for each strand. Gender-related differences are analyzed as well. Results from a pilot study portion of the 1996 survey to investigate students' attitudes towards science and learning science are also included. Scores are analyzed and results summarized under a Key Findings heading for each strand, for gender differences, and for attitudes to learning science. Results of a questionnaire sent to all participating schools are also presented. A list of questions on teaching and learning issues is provided for reflection and discussion. (PVD)

Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Elementary Secondary Education, Environmental Education, Foreign Countries, Rating Scales, Science Education, Scores, Sex Differences, Student Attitudes, Student Evaluation, Tests

Autor: Scottish Office Education and Industry Dept., Edinburgh.


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