Thirty-five of the assessment tasks presented students with completed
graphs, tables or maps and asked them to extract and interpret particular
tasks were completely or largely the same for year 4 and year 8 students.
Five of these are trend tasks (fully described with data for both 1999
and 2003) six are released tasks (fully described with data for 2003
only), and 12 are link tasks (to be used again in 2007 so only partially
described here). Three trend tasks were attempted only by year 4 students.
The remaining nine tasks, including five trend tasks, one released task
and three link tasks, were attempted only by year 8 students.
The tasks were presented to students in three formats. Five tasks involved
more complex instructions or required more extended responses. These
were administered in one-to-one interview format. Twenty-four tasks
were presented in station format. The remaining six tasks were presented
in independent format.
The task details and results for trend tasks are presented in the first
section, followed by the task details and results for released tasks.
The third section contains a little task information and the results
for the link tasks. Within each of the three sections, tasks used with
both year 4 and year 8 students are presented first, followed by tasks
used only with year 4 students and then by tasks used only with year
Comparing results for year 4 and year 8 students
Averaged across 116 task components used with both year 4 and year 8
students, 76 percent of year 8 students produced correct responses compared
to 52 percent of year 4 students. This indicates that, on average, students
have made substantial progress between year 4 and year 8 in the skills
assessed by the tasks. Nearly one third of the task components were
answered successfully by at least 90 percent of year 8 students. The
largest difference between year 4 and year 8 students occurred with
Trend results: comparing 1999 and 2003 results
Seven trend tasks involving 37 task components were administered to
year 4 students in both the 1999 and 2003 assessments. More 2003 than
1999 students succeeded on 13 components, while more 1999 than 2003
students succeeded on 22 components. Averaged across all 37 components,
two percent fewer students succeeded in 2003 than in 1999. This suggests
a small decline in performance for year 4 students over the four-year
Ten trend tasks involving 60 task components were administered to year
8 students in both the 1999 and 2003 assessments. More 2003 than 1999
students succeeded on 23 components, while more 1999 than 2003 students
succeeded on 29 components. Averaged across all 60 components, one percent
fewer students succeeded in 2003 than in 1999, not a meaningful change
in performance over the four-year period.