Growing Learners

Since the mid-1980s, test score-based accountability has dominated American public education. This movement took on the force of federal law in 2001 with the No Child Left Behind Act, as every state in the country administered standardized tests to measure student and school performance. Making high school and college completion our national educational goal requires a corresponding shift in educational policy and practice, away from a focus on test scores and toward a new emphasis on developing the cognitive and noncognitive factors that lead students to earn high course grades.

Noncognitive Factors Affect Academic Performance
It may be most helpful to think about noncognitive factors as properties of the interaction between students and classrooms or school environments. The essential question is not how to change students to improve their behavior but rather how to create contexts that better support students in developing critical attitudes and learning strategies necessary for their academic success.


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SOURCE : Farrington, C.A., Roderick, M., Allensworth, E., Nagaoka, J., Keyes, T.S., Johnson, D.W., & Beechum, N.O. (2012) Teaching adolescents to become learners. The role of noncognitive factors in shaping school performance: A critical literature review. Chicago: University of Chicago Consortium on Chicago School Research. Download the report.

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