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Examination-Curriculum Alignment: A Case study of the 2014 Junior Certificate State Final Examinations in Swaziland.
Keywords : Assessment and Evaluation, Curriculum, Educational Effectiveness, Policy
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Abstract
This study analyses the alignment between national goals, objectives and examination items of 2014 history Junior Certificate. This validity investigation aims at illuminating the knowledge and cognitive processes tapped by the items-to see if some core skills (higher cognitive) were omitted from the examination. Taxonomy table was used for establishing the alignment between exam items and the knowledge and skills learnt. This assisted in assessing the nature of the items in relation to national goals, content and objectives. While some items aligned to specific goals, objectives and contents but many were omitted from the examination. Misalignment compromised the validity of the results. The examination had a skewed type of alignment particularly with national goals. The examination was good in gathering information about students’ skills and knowledge but exacerbated the problem of curriculum narrowing. Government’s effort to reform the education system through the assessment resulted in technical changes. Examination should be an accountability policy for promoting multiple changes in practice including the quality of teaching and enhancing the effectiveness of teachers and examiners. Key words: Taxonomy, Validity, Assessment Junior Certificate