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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Educ. | doi: 10.3389/feduc.2019.00123

Assessing the Science Learning Assessment (SLA) instrument in Greek early childhood education using the Item Response Theory framework

  • 1Alexander Technological Educational Institute of Thessaloniki, Greece
  • 2Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece

Studies revealed that science learning in early childhood is associated with primary and secondary school readiness, improved causal reasoning, increased interest in science in later life, and with long-term effects on academic achievement. Thus, having valid and reliable instruments to assess children’s science learning becomes critical in early childhood education (ECE). The main goal of the current study was to examine the psychometric properties of the Greek version of the Science Learning Assessment (SLA), an instrument developed in the USA to assess science learning in ECE. Randomly selected from 53 preschool units in Greece, 528 children were administered with the Greek version of the SLA. Advanced statistical methods (CFA, IRT framework) were employed to analyse the data and the results showed that the Greek version of the SLA displayed acceptable psychometric properties. Therefore, it can be argued that the Greek version of the SLA is a valid and reliable scale for assessing children’s science knowledge in ECE, capturing universal concepts of science knowledge children in early childhood.

Keywords: early childhood education, educational assessment, Item response theory (IRT), psychometric properties, Science learning assessment

Received: 10 Feb 2019; Accepted: 10 Oct 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Grammatikopoulos, Tsigilis and Gregoriadis. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Prof. Vasilis Grammatikopoulos, Alexander Technological Educational Institute of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, 574 00, Greece, gramvas@bc.teithe.gr