The Common Core State Standards Initiative and the Achievement Gap

Quintessa Hathaway Hervey, Tennessee State University


The purpose of this study was to (a) examine the Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSSI) to (b) explore differences in student achievement according to when groups of states adopted and fully implemented the CCSSI (i.e., early adopter states, late adopter states, non-adopter states, and withdrawn adopter states).and (c) investigate effect of CCSSI on the achievement gap. The population for this study was the U.S. fifty states and District of Columbia Both 2009 and 2016 archival American College Test (ACT) mean composite scores were utilized. The year 2009 served as baseline data, because states adopted and began implementing at that time; 2016 was used for data collection and analysis, because states that had chosen to adopt, implement, or withdraw had stabilized. Descriptive statistics were run and displayed in tables. Inferential statistics included: (a) paired samples t-tests—to determine whether there was a statistically significant difference among the race groups from 2009 to 2016; (b) independent samples t-tests—to detect significant differences in ACT means; and, (c) two-way between groups analysis of variance (ANOVA)—to explore the impact of state adoption group by race as measured by the 2016 ACT mean composite score. Among the major findings: (a) no statistically significant difference in ACT scores from 2009 to 2016 was found for any of the four groups of states; (b) In both 2009 and 2016, blacks had the lowest mean composite scores, and (c) in both 2009 and 2016, the non-adopter states decreased in mean composite scores overall and in each racial demographic.

Subject Area

Educational leadership

Recommended Citation

Quintessa Hathaway Hervey, "The Common Core State Standards Initiative and the Achievement Gap" (2018). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI10747412.