MARKER RELIABILITY IN THE IRISH LEAVING CERTIFICATE
John MacNamara and George F Madaus
The reliability in marking of nine subjects in the Irish Leaving Certificate examination taken at the end of secondary (grammar) schooling was investigated. Forty scripts in each subject were marked by two different examiners and by one examiner on two different occasions. A high degree of unreliability was found in the marking of all subjects. The sources of the unreliability are discussed and, in the light of the relevant literature, two principal ways for counteracting such unreliability are suggested, the use of multiple-choice questions and the multiple marking of essays.
AN EXPERIMENTAL INVESTIGATION OF THE USE OF AN SRA READING LABORATORY IN IRISH SCHOOLS?
The pupils (n 219) of two fourth standard classes (mean age 10 years 5 months) in three Dublin boys’ schools were randomly divided into two groups, an experimental group that used the SRA Reading Laboratory IIa and a control group that followed their normal reading programme with minor innovations to balance possible Hawthorne effects in the experimental group. Within each school both groups were taught by the same teacher. Before and after the experimental period, which lasted fourteen weeks, pupils took tests in reading speed, reading accuracy, reading vocabulary, reading comprehension and spelling, they also completed a subject preference inventory. Significant differences, in favour of the experimental group, were found only for amount of improvement in reading speed and reading accuracy.
EDUCATIONAL CONSTRUCTION IN MALTA
The development of educational institutions in Malta is seen as being influenced mainly by geographical, religious and political factors. The development of public primary schooling from 1838 onwards is outlined, with particular reference to problems which arose in connection with the use of a second language. Despite the concerted efforts of the 1950s, postprimary education has been slow to expand. Third-level education has been marked by a number of significant innovations (in university, teacher training and technological colleges) over the last twenty years.
THE EDUCATION OF PHYSICALLY HANDICAPPED CHILDREN IN ORDINARY SCHOOLS
Simon H Haskell and Elizabeth M Anderson
Special education in Britain which favours the special school for the education of the handicapped is contrasted with special education in Sweden, where integration is now the key-word. The rationale underlying alternative systems (special school and special class) is considered, particular attention is given to the role of the boarding school in the education of the physically handicapped.
CREATIVITY: DEFINITIONS, EXPLANATIONS AND FACILITATION
John S Dacey and George F Madaus
Definitions of creativity in terms of product, process and subjective experience are considered. Major attempts to provide theoretical explanations of creativity are then reviewed. Finally, views on the critical period hypothesis concerning the facilitation of creativity are outlined.
INTELLIGENCE AND HEREDITY: SOME COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS
The concept which has given rise to the so-called ‘nature-nurture controversy’ was that of a genetic component entering into all intellectual activities. For ease of reference it was termed ‘intelligence’. The widespread use of the term by later writers has resulted in a confusing vanety of meanings. The factual evidence for a genetic component is here summarized in some detail and the influence of environmental factors briefly discussed. Several important corollaries for practical education are drawn from the conclusions thus reached.
TEACHERS’ ASSESSMENTS OF THE SCHOLASTIC PROGRESS OF PUPILS
Thomas Kellaghan, John MacNamara and Elizabeth Neuman
Teachers (n 166) of a representative sample of eleven-year old Irish school children (n 479) responded to a questionnaire about (i) the general progress of the children and (ii) the progress of children in individual subjects. The general progress of 25 per cent of the children was regarded as ‘unsatisfactory’, 66 per cent were judged as having difficulty with at least one subject. Difficulty with arithmetic or Irish was more likely to be reported than difficulty with English.
THOUGHTS AND ACTIONS ASSOCIATED WITH ACHIEVEMENT MOTIVATION
This paper presents an overview of prior research in the area of achievement motivation. Further, recent findings are presented which suggest that beliefs concerning the causes of success and failure may mediate between the level of achievement, needs and behaviour. The disparate consequences of attributing an outcome (success or failure) to effort as opposed to ability are discussed.
VALIDITY STUDIES WITH A TEST OF HIGH-LEVEL REASONING
A measure of high-level reasoning, the Canterbury Reasoning Test (CRT) was employed in two studies, aimed at establishing its construct and predictive validity. Data from the first investigation a factorial study with second-year university students, is used to provide evidence for the construct validity of the test as a measure of two basic aspects of highlevel reasoning, (i) logical reasoning and (ii) pure associative reasoning. The second investigation, a practical study carried out for the New Zealand Forest Service, suggests that the CRT has some validity as a predictor of success in university studies.
STUDENT UNREST- AMERICAN STYLE
The growth of student unrest in American universities is outlined. Left, right and moderate positions are represented in this unrest. Student concern ranges over a wide variety of issues, from internal administrative reform to the Vietnam war. Some possible explanations for the present unrest and agitation are considered.