THE EFFECT OF A LANGUAGE SKILLS INTERVENTION PROGRAM ON PROFICIENCY TEST OUTCOMES

NANCY TAYLOR TIRRILL, Tennessee State University

Abstract

The results of a longitudinal assessment of an eighth grade intervention program developed in response to state required proficiency testing for graduation are presented. Comparing the performance of target students with nonparticipants, the experimental study evaluated paired subjects at three testing intervals: the year prior to remediation when no differences existed; towards the conclusion of the intervention; and the subsequent school term. Subjects were matched on the basis of sex, race, and their language raw score from a standardized test. The stratified random sample represented approximately 20 percent of the population treated by the program. Depicting a low socioeconomic level, program participants were underachieving, average-stanine students considered at risk in passing the state exam.^ Instruments utilized for gathering data included the Comprehensive Test of Basic Skills, Level 3S (CTBS) and the Tennessee Proficiency Test (TPT). Scores from the CTBS determined the language and reading achievement in the seventh and eighth grades by the experimental and control subjects. The TPT provided data on the proportion of the sample reaching the 70 percent criterion for passing the ninth grade state exam.^ The study examined and tested four hypotheses for significance at the.05 level. A correlated matched-pair t-test was calculated from data generated from the three testing periods. In addition, statistical analyses included a frequency distribution and cross-tabulation of scores from the Tennessee Proficiency Test.^ Results from Hypotheses One and Two indicated no statistically significant difference existed in language and reading achievement at the end of the eighth grade for the matched pairs. Hypothesis Three was not accepted as a result of the experimental students achieving a.05 level of significant difference from the control group on the TPT. The frequency distribution and cross-tabulation procedures on the TPT scores indicated that the direction of change was in favor of the experimental group. The research concluded with an examination of individual project sites. Although six locations demonstrated a higher mean score on the TPT than their matched control group, only two schools achieved the stated level of significance resulting in acceptence of Hypothesis Four. ^

Subject Area

Education, Curriculum and Instruction

Recommended Citation

NANCY TAYLOR TIRRILL, "THE EFFECT OF A LANGUAGE SKILLS INTERVENTION PROGRAM ON PROFICIENCY TEST OUTCOMES" (1986). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI8802622.
http://digitalscholarship.tnstate.edu/dissertations/AAI8802622

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