The assessments included twelve extended assessment tasks and seven brief knowledge tasks related to the material world strand of the science curriculum.
Nine extended tasks and one brief knowledge task were completely or largely the same for year 4 and year 8 students. Two extended tasks and four brief knowledge tasks were attempted only by year 8 students. One extended task and two brief knowledge tasks were attempted only by year 4 students.
Five of the extended tasks are link tasks (to be used again in 1999), and therefore are not described in detail here. All of the other tasks are released tasks for which full details are given.
This chapter presents the assessment results in the following order:
Averaged across tasks or major task components attempted by both year 4 and year 8 students, 63 percent of year 8 students produced correct or highly rated responses, compared to 43 percent of year 4 students. Year 8 students clearly had greater knowledge and understanding of the material world. The superior performance of year 8 students occurred on all aspects of the tasks, such as demonstrating knowledge, investigating, describing, reasoning, explaining and predicting.
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