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The extent to which classroom instruction and assessment activities in mathematics are aligned to the State of Maryland's Learning Objectives and the Maryland School Performance Assessment Program (MSPAP) was studied by examining the underlying structure of the mathematics teacher questionnaire developed and administered to teachers in the 1996-97 instructional year. The existence of hypothesized dimensions of teacher attitudes and practices was studied, along with the relationship among MSPAP gains, percentage of reduced or free lunch students, and composite scores on dimensions of the teacher questionnaire. A stratified random sample procedure was used to obtain a sample of 72 elementary and 36 middle schools. Some students were also asked to respond to some of the items from the teacher questionnaire related to current mathematics instruction. Analyses indicate that elementary teachers were more likely than middle school teachers to report that they place greater emphasis on mathematics learning outcomes and reform-oriented problems and that their mathematics instruction has been influenced by the MSPAP. Analyses also suggest that only approximately 15% of instructional tasks reflect the majority of characteristics of the MSPAP tasks. (Contains 17 tables, 8 figures, and 27 references.) (SLD)

Descriptors: Educational Assessment, Educational Change, Educational Objectives, Educational Practices, Elementary Education, Mathematics Education, Mathematics Tests, Middle Schools, Performance Based Assessment, Questionnaires, State Programs, Teacher Attitudes, Teacher Surveys, Teachers, Testing Programs

Autor: Lane, Suzanne; Parke, Carol S.; Stone, Clement A.


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