National tests

Updated: 17 November 2020

Next update: Not yet determined

5th grade pupils who achieved the lowest mastering level in english

Selected tables and figures from this statistics

About the statistics

The purpose of national tests is to assess the pupils’ skills in reading, mathematics and English. The tests are part of the formative assessment and are conducted by autumn in 5th, 8th and 9th grade.

Mastering levels -- There are three levels for 5th grade and five levels for 8th and 9th grade. The pupils are placed at the different levels according to their score points at the tests

Score points -- From 2014, in addition to mastering levels, the results can be measured in score points. The average in the scale is set at 50, with standard deviation 10. The original points at the test are never comparable, and the degree of difficulty will differ from year to year. Therefore a new scale which describes the pupils’ skills has been developed in order to compare between different tests and years. Item response theory (IRT) has been used to create the new scale.

The table below shows the score intervals for each mastering level in English, reading and mathematics in 5th, 8th, and 9th grade (P.S The score intervals for the reading tests are not definite)

English 5th grade

Mastering level

Score points (min-max)

1

19-42

2

43-56

3

57-78

Reading 5th grade

1

19-42

2

43-56

3

57-74

Mathematics 5th grade

1

19-42

2

43-56

3

57-78

English 8th grade

1

19-36

2

37-44

3

45-56

4

57-62

5

63-78

Reading 8th grade

1

18-36

2

37-44

3

45-54

4

55-62

5

63-75

Mathematics 8th grade

1

20-36

2

37-44

3

45-54

4

55-62

5

63-80

Reading 9th grade

1

18-36

2

37-44

3

45-54

4

55-62

5

63-75

Mathematics 9th grade

1

10-37

2

37-44

3

45-54

4

55-62

5

63-90

Parents’ highest level of education is derived from register information in The National Education Database (NUDB). The new definitions of levels are used.

Immigration category is coded according to Standard for immigration category 2008. The term other pupils comprise the pupils in immigration categories A, D, E, F and G.

The centrality of pupils' school minicipality is coded according to the definitions in Centrality 2008.

Name: National tests

Topic: Education

Not yet determined

Division for Education and Culture Statistics

National and county level

Annual

Not relevant

All education statistics at Statistics Norway is stored in a proper, standardized manner in consultation with the Data Inspectorate.

The purpose of national tests is to assess to what degree the school has been able to develop the pupils’ skills in reading, mathematics and English. The tests are intended as instruments for improvements and development activities locally (school and municipality level) and centrally (government level). The tests are part of the formative assessment and are conducted by autumn in 5th, 8th and 9th grade.

National tests in 5th and 8th grade have been conducted annually since 2007. The tests reflects the competence objectives of the curriculum in 4th and 7th grade. Since 2010, identical tests to those in 8th grade in mathematics and Norwegian have also been conducted in 9th grade. Starting in 2010, both the tests in mathematics and reading English are conducted electronically.

Important users of the education statistics are public administration, special interest organizations, the media, researchers, business and industry. Key users are in particular the Ministry of Education and Research and the Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training

No external users have access to the statistics and analyses before they are published and accessible simultaneously for all users on ssb.no at 08 am. Prior to this, a minimum of three months' advance notice is given in the Statistics Release Calendar. This is one of Statistics Norway’s key principles for ensuring that all users are treated equally.

The statistics on national tests can be viewed in connection with education statistics covering pupils in primary and lower secondary schools.

Act of 21 June 2019 No. 32 relating to official statistics and Statistics Norway § 10.

Not relevant

National tests are conducted in 5th and 8th grade in primary and lower secondary schools. The tests are obligatory for all pupils at these grades. Each school can give exemptions according to specified conditions.

The statistics include pupils in 5th and 8th grade who have completed national tests in English, reading and mathematics. Pupils who are exempted or who have not participated in the tests are not included. Statistics about exemption and non-participation in the national tests are available from the Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training online in Skoleporten .

In the statistics for 2011, participation rates are measured against the corresponding number of pupils registered 1 October the same year (GSI).

In the statistics for 2013, exemption rates by test are published.

In the statistics for 2014, participation and exemption rates by immigration category in 5th grade are published.

The results from the national tests are collected through the test administration system (PAS), which is owned by the Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training.

Statistics Norway receives the data from the Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training under the provisions of the Statistics Act.

Each school is responsible for registering the results in the test administration system (PAS). The data are stored in PAS for a limited period of time before encryption. Statistics Norway receives a copy of selected variables prior to the encryption.

The data are subject to various controls such as deletion of duplicates, comparisons with former data sets and a control of correct and valid values for each variable. All Personal ID-numbers are checked for errors.

The statistics for each national test (the three subjects) are based on calculating simple distributions of pupils across the various mastering levels.

Not relevant.

The general rule is not to publish data if less than 3 pupils are found within a cell or unit in a table. This is to prevent identification of individuals within the statistics and follows The Act of 21 June 2019 No. 32 relating to official statistics and Statistics Norway § 7.

Until 2013 the score intervals for each mastering level were set every year. From 2014 and onwards, the intervals for each level are definite for the tests in English and Mathematics. This means that from 2014 and onwards, it will be possible to compare the results over time. This is also added to the Reading test from 2016, making it possible to compare results in reading over time from 2017 onwards.

In addition, from 2014, a representative population of six per cent of the pupils will be given so-called anchor items, which will serve to link the tests from year to year, and thus makes it possible to compare the results over time. At the present stage comparison over time will be possible from 2015 in English and Mathematics.

For more information about what is new in national tests 2014, please consult the website of the Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training.

In 2007 the percentage distribution of the mastering levels were set according to certain criteria and statistical analyses. Each year until 2013 the mastering levels were set with the aim to achieve approximately the same average and distribution nationally as the previous years. The intention was to give best possible data for comparison at the local level.

When analyzing the national tests from 2007-2013, changes over time for a given group of pupils (e.g. county results) should primarily be interpreted not as absolute improvement/decline, but as relative changes compared to other groups (e.g. other counties) or compared to the distribution at the national level. Even though the distribution at the national level is maintained at an almost fixed level from 2007-2013, there are some variations that one should take into account when comparing results over time.

Since 2010, the results in 8th grade can be compared with the same pupils' results in 5th grade three years earlier. For some pupils (that didn't take part in the 5th grade test or came to the country after 5th grade) such a comparison is not possible. One should also note that the mastering level scale in 5th grade contains three levels, whereas there are five levels in 8th grade. These levels are thus not directly comparable.

National tests in English in 5th grade were cancelled in 2011, therefore no results are presented for this test.

When data is compiled from administrative registers, typical errors like measurement, non-response and sampling errors do not occur in the same sense as compared to statistics compiled by forms. Errors in data collected from administrative registers can be caused by uncertainties in the definition of variables and values between those responsible for the registers and others responsible for data collection from the registers.

Even though the statistics for national tests are not based on samples, one should be precautious when comparing results based on small groups.

Not relevant.

Contact