Title page for ETD etd-06022007-114446

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Ball, Anna Elizabeth
Author's Email Address annabethball@hotmail.com
URN etd-06022007-114446
Title Grade Retention in High Stakes and Low Stakes Testing Years
Degree Master of Arts (M.A.)
Department Psychology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
George Noell Committee Chair
Frank Gresham Committee Member
Kristin Gansle Committee Member
  • discriminant analysis
  • logistic regression
  • high stakes testing
  • grade retention
Date of Defense 2007-05-17
Availability unrestricted
Recent political calls for an end to social promotion have led to an era in which many states are using high stakes tests to make retention decisions. Several decades of research have shown that retention is not an effective practice academically or socially. Louisiana is one state that has adopted a high stakes testing policy. This study examines a state-wide database to examine the predictors of retention in high stakes and low stakes testing years. Multiple regression analyses, discriminant analyses, and logistic regression analyses were run on data from students in grade 4 through grade 8 in Louisiana. The results showed that current year achievement most strongly predicted retention, followed by prior year achievement and finally demographic factors. This finding was consistent over all grade levels. It was also found that even in high stakes testing years, test results are not the sole determinant of retention status. Several exceptions to the high stakes testing policy exist in Louisiana. Limitations of this study and directions for future research are also discussed.
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