An Assessment of the Social Science Program at a Selected North Dakota Public School

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Teaching & Learning


Purpose: The purpose of this study was to identify methods and develop instruments which were used to evaluate the social studies program at a selected public school in North Dakota. Research was conducted to:

1. Determine levels of achievement of selected social studies objectives by students at different grade levels.

2. Report these results in both a norm-referenced and a criterion-referenced setting.

3. Compare the results to other measures of pupil success.

4. Examine relationships between the results and selected personal and educational factors.

Procedures: Three instruments were prepared by selecting and altering exercises utilized by the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) for their 1971-72 assessment of social studies. Norm references for students aged 9, 13 and 17 for national, regional and rural area samples were compiled from NAEP documents. Criterion standards for students aged 9, 13 and 17 for the nation were obtained from published findings of a select National Council for the Social Studies Task Force. State and local criterion standards were obtained from the North Dakota State Committee for Social Studies and the social studies faculty at the selected school.

All students in grades 4-12 at the selected school were tested at the beginning of the 1976-77 school year. Intelligence scores, achievement test scores and letter grades were obtained from school files for as many students as possible. Personal and educational data were obtained for each student on a separate section of the research instruments .

Nine Separate research hypotheses were examined. The data were prepared for computer processing and analyzed by means of multiple regressions, correlation coefficients, Wilcoxon tests and Kolmogorov-Smirnov tests.


1. Student performance is positively related to grade level, at a level greater than that of the relationship between performance and chronological age of student.

2. Overall student performance was essentially equal to national and regional norms, higher than rural area norms.

3. Overall student performance failed to reach criterion standards for the nation, equalled criterion standards for the state and exceeded local criterion standards.

4. Subscores on exercises measuring social studies knowledges, skills and attitudes were positively related.

5. Achievement scores and letter grade for grades 7-12 were positively related to scores on the research instrument.

6. The methods and instruments designed for this study are appropriate for use at other schools in North Dakota.

This document is currently not available here.