Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10125/31793

Writing Transformations: Mediating the Effects of High Stakes Testing Through the National Writing Project

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Title: Writing Transformations: Mediating the Effects of High Stakes Testing Through the National Writing Project
Authors: Llanes, Sharaya
Issue Date: 15 Jan 2014
Publisher: University of Hawaii at Manoa
Abstract: This study examined the influences of high stakes testing, in the context of the 2001 Federal law, No Child Left Behind (NCLB). In particular, this study presented the National Writing Project (NWP) as an example of a professional development program helping build versatile teachers and confident students to cope with the effects of high stakes testing. The study examined findings from interviews with educators, and was complemented by participant observation of the NWP, writing workshops, and public hearings on standardized testing. Study findings suggest that the pedagogy practiced by the NWP should be utilized to assist educators to develop process as opposed to product driven learning, an effect of the mandates of current NCLB high stakes testing. As demonstrated in the study findings, proliferating theory of the NWP, over the product driven approach of high stakes testing, supports, empowers, and informs teachers to better prepare their students. High stakes testing, the singular mode of accountability under NCLB, now affects all students in the American Public School system. Despite the fact that the issue involves the distribution of billions of dollars to public schools, the voices of teachers in these schools are proportionately left out of debates on accountability. By bringing educator voices to the forefront, the professionals who know their field best can relate their experiences under the current system and envision future modes of accountability. This study focuses on the educators in Texas who teach in the Public School system, under NCLB, and have participated in the NWP. The barrage of state and federal testing each year in Texas provides a backdrop of a high­stakes testing environment in which teachers and students must work and learn. In particular, Texas was the birthplace and testing ground for the specific test-based accountability later used in NCLB. Texas children are also diverse in their needs, with large numbers of English as a Second Language students. This study articulates the classroom effects of the current test-based accountability policy, and the importance of professional development programs like the National Writing Project as a possibility for future egalitarian-focused educational reform.
Pages/Duration: 79 pages
URI/DOI: http://hdl.handle.net/10125/31793
Rights: All UHM Honors Projects are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Appears in Collections:Honors Projects for English



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