What content is assessed in the Swedish national tests in biology, chemistry and physics?
2013 (English)Conference paper, Abstract (Refereed)
All students in year nine in the Swedish compulsory school take a national test in biology, physics or chemistry. The ambition of these tests, which were given for the first time as late as in the spring semester 2009 is to measure the Swedish students’ knowledge in science, but also to provide an aid in teachers’ development of their teaching in order to support equal and fair assessment and grading. The purpose of this paper is to analyze and discuss the content of the national tests in biology, physics and chemistry. The paper highlights and discusses similarities and differences between the three subject tests carried out 2009-2012. The study presented in the paper has clarified five categories of content.The analysis shows that a student, to pass the tests, need to show evidence that he or she can answer correctly on questions about (a) scientific concepts, models theories, (b) the scientific ways of thinking about the world and (c) the scientific method. For higher grades, however, the students need to be able to give correct answers on questions about (d) the use of science in relation to everyday problems and also (e) the use of science in relation to political and moral issues. In the paper we discuss what the privileging of content measured can lead to in teachers’ planning of teaching and for the assessment of students’ knowledge, but also in relation to prerequisites for students’ participation in decision making where scientific knowledge is a central part of the problem at hand.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-207789OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-207789DiVA: diva2:649572
The European Science Education Research Association Conference (ESERA), September 2-7 2013, Nicosia, Cyprus
FunderSwedish Research Council