Gazing Past the Gaps: A Growth-Based Assessment of the Mathematics Achievement of Black Girls
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© 2017, Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. The purpose of this study was to proffer the idea to “gaze” past gender and racial achievement gaps by providing a growth-based assessment of the achievement of Black girls. The study aims to elucidate how alternatives to traditional achievement gap analyses can yield information relevant to addressing classroom challenges. This exploratory analysis utilized effect sizes and confidence intervals to summarize the achievement of Black girls in mathematics across fourth and eighth grade NAEP assessments. This approach was selected because it supports meta-analytic thinking, which is important for comparison and generalization across studies. The results of this quantitative single-group summary of NAEP data indicated that Black female students demonstrated performance contrary to popular results for female students in general. Fourth grade Black girls demonstrated growth in Number and Operations and Algebra and solid performance in Measurement across time. While statistically significant growth across all mathematics subject matter was observed for eighth grade Black girls. This study contributes to the literature on intersectionality and achievement by extending both lines of inquiry. Intersectional research rarely investigates student achievement with a quantitative lens, while achievement research traditionally utilizes a between group comparative approach. The practical and empirical implications of these research extensions are provided in the discussion.
author list (cited authors)
Young, J. L., Young, J. R., & Capraro, R. M.