Volume 33, Issue 2 (2004)
A Preliminary Investigation Into the Identification and Development of Early Mathematics Curriculum-Based Measurement
Ben Clarke, Mark R. Shinn
Abstract. Recent studies indicate that students in the United States are not achieving sufficient mathematics skills to meet the demands required of them within and outside of school. Among the keys to preventing mathematics difficulties are to identify and intervene with those students who may be most at-risk for later failure, monitoring their progress as frequently as possible. Unfortunately, current mathematics tests do not meet both these keys until mathematics instruction is well underway. This study examines the reliability, validity, and sensitivity of four experimental early mathematics measures designed for use in early identification and formative evaluation. The measures were based on the principle of number sense and were designed to assess the precursors of mathematics understanding learned before children are able to do formal mathematics. First grade students (N = 52) were tested and interscorer, alternate form, test-retest reliability, and concurrent and predictive validity with three criterion measures were examined. Results showed that the four experimental measures each had sufficient evidence of their reliability, validity, and sensitivity. The differences in the utility of each experimental measure are analyzed from an early identification and formative evaluation perspective. Implications for practice are discussed.
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