This is an objective measurement that helps in identify areas of academic strength and weaknesses. It measures academic ability across areas including oral language, basic reading, reading comprehension and fluency, written expression, mathematics and maths fluency. Results allow skill in a particular academic area, to be compared to a normative age and grade-matched sample. This can be particularly relevant and helpful after a cognitive assessment indicates that a child may be gifted in a or particular area or alternatively experience learning difficulty or have a learning disability. An educational assessment will provide parents and teachers with the understanding and information they need to formulate effective tailored learning plans that accommodate academic strengths and weaknesses.
Educational assessments with children require the administering of standardised psychometric tools by experienced and accredited psychologists. These tools help with the assessment of various areas of academic skill:
- Reading: Ability to read words such as identifying letters or sounds, reading comprehension or phonetic awareness.
- Mathematics: Ability to answer arithmetic equations, solve mathematical problems, and complete equations with in a given timeframe.
- Writing:Ability to spell and use written expression within cogent sentence structure to form and communicate ideas.
- Oral Language: The ability to capture details, interpret meaning and express in a comprehensible way.
Educational assessment tools have proven useful in the following areas:
- Identifying the level of academic skill in a particular area:Assessments can help parents, teachers and children better understand how a classroom setting can affects their learning ability and academic performance. Results can help guide the teacher’s decisions in regard to providing extension activities or access to acceleration in certain subjects.
- Diagnosing specific learning disorders such as a reading or writing disability: Assessments provide evidence for special provisions. (For Example “scribe” in formal school examination settings.) Learning skills can be developed based on individual abilities and strengths while providing strategies to provide help and compensation in weak or vulnerable areas
- Help with the formulation of Individualised Education Plans (IEPs):Help teachers and school counsellors to provide compensate for children’s specialised learning needs during clinical appraisals, curriculum planning or special educational placements.