Science

Science is one of the eight learning areas in the New Zealand Curriculum. The NMSSA assesses all learning areas over a five year cycle.

  • NMSSA 2017 Insights for Teachers: Science

    This report is designed to support science teaching in primary classrooms. It draws on insights generated from the assessment of the science learning area carried out by the National Monitoring Study of Student Achievement (NMSSA) in 2017.

    The report is in four parts. Part one introduces NMSSA and the NMSSA science assessment. Part two presents four practical insights into learning in science. Part three considers what we can learn from the NMSSA results about the literacy and numeracy skills students need to engage with their science learning. Part four discusses the relationship between students’ knowledge of science and the science capabilities they are developing.

    Author(s): Educational Assessment Research Unit and New Zealand Council for Educational Research. Report for the Ministry of Education.

    Date Published: May 2019

  • NMSSA 2017: Science - Key Findings

    The National Monitoring Study of Student Achievement (NMSSA) is designed to assess student achievement across the New Zealand Curriculum at Year 4 and Year 8 in English-medium state and state-integrated schools. The study is organised in five-year cycles. The first cycle ran from 2012 to 2016.

    In 2017, NMSSA assessed science achievement using a nationally representative sample of about 2,100 students at each year level. Results were reported on a measurement scale called the Science Capabilities (SC) scale. Questionnaires were also used to gather contextual information from students, teachers and principals.

    Author(s): Educational Assessment Research Unit, University of Otago and New Zealand Council for Educational Research for the Ministry of Education.

    Date Published: December 2018

  • NMSSA 2017: Technical Information

    In 2017 the National Monitoring Study of Student Achievement (NMSSA) study focused on the learning areas of science and health and physical education. This report provides technical information for science and health and physical education.

    Author(s): Educational Assessment Research Unit, University of Otago and New Zealand Council for Educational Research for the Ministry of Education.

    Date Published: December 2018

  • Wānangatia te Putanga Tauira National Monitoring Study of Student Achievement: Science 2012

    The first NMSSA assessments were undertaken in science and writing in 2012. This report presents the findings about the achievement and attitudes of year 4 and year 8 students in science and factors that are associated with that achievement.

    The report also describes the achievement of subgroups of students (by gender, ethnicity, school decile and type of school) and the achievement of key population groups (Māori, Pasifika and students with special education needs).

    Author(s): Educational Assessment Research Unit and New Zealand Council for Educational Research

    Date Published: November 2013

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