Event Title

Poster Introductions II--The Assessment of Motor Development in Preschool Children in New Brunswick

Presenter Information

Luana Marotta

Start Date

15-10-2009 3:30 PM

End Date

15-10-2009 3:45 PM

Description

Health and physical development is a basic precondition for children’s academic learning. For this reason, outcomes related to these aspects of child development constitute an important issue in early childhood, which is a crucial period for the establishment of proper skills associated with school preparedness. This study focused on a specific dimension of health-related outcomes, namely, the motor development. As Love points out, motor development is precursor of a number of academic skills (Love, 1984). Moreover, good motor function is necessary for physical activity participation, which in turn is related to enhanced learning and academic performance (Active Healthy Kids Canada, 2006). This study examines the development of fine and gross motor skills of New Brunswick children. We use data from the Early Years of Evaluation – Direct Assessment (EYE-DA) for a large sample of 4- and 5-year olds pre-school children in this province. Besides motor development, the EYE-DA also assesses children in other three domains, namely, awareness of self and the environment, cognitive skills and language and communication. The study describes the motor skills of pre-school children of New Brunswick and asks whether these children differ among each other according to their gender and cultural backgrounds (that is, their affiliation with the Anglophone, Francophone or Aboriginal communities). It also analyzes whether the items included in the EYE-DA are unbiased. The analytic approach used in the study to identify item bias is called Differential Item Functioning (DIF). In the DIF analysis, we examine if different groups of examinees (in this case, examinees of different gender and cultural backgrounds) have the same probability of success in the items, after controlling for their level of ability in the domain under consideration (Zumbo, 1999; Clauser & Mazor, 1998; Hambleton, 1991).

Luana Marotta is a full-time Master’s in Sociology student at University of New Brunswick and currently works as a part-time research assistant at the Canadian Research Institute for Social Policy (CRISP). Luana’s research interests include socio-economic inequalities in educational systems, school effectiveness, health development in childhood and quantitative methods applied to social research. Her current research focuses on criteria of measurement quality, particularly issues related to the validity of instruments used in social surveys. For her master thesis, she will analyze the occurrence of item bias in the Early Years Evaluation – Direct Assessment (EYE-DA), a pre-school screening tool used to measure children’s developmental skills.

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Oct 15th, 3:30 PM Oct 15th, 3:45 PM

Poster Introductions II--The Assessment of Motor Development in Preschool Children in New Brunswick

Health and physical development is a basic precondition for children’s academic learning. For this reason, outcomes related to these aspects of child development constitute an important issue in early childhood, which is a crucial period for the establishment of proper skills associated with school preparedness. This study focused on a specific dimension of health-related outcomes, namely, the motor development. As Love points out, motor development is precursor of a number of academic skills (Love, 1984). Moreover, good motor function is necessary for physical activity participation, which in turn is related to enhanced learning and academic performance (Active Healthy Kids Canada, 2006). This study examines the development of fine and gross motor skills of New Brunswick children. We use data from the Early Years of Evaluation – Direct Assessment (EYE-DA) for a large sample of 4- and 5-year olds pre-school children in this province. Besides motor development, the EYE-DA also assesses children in other three domains, namely, awareness of self and the environment, cognitive skills and language and communication. The study describes the motor skills of pre-school children of New Brunswick and asks whether these children differ among each other according to their gender and cultural backgrounds (that is, their affiliation with the Anglophone, Francophone or Aboriginal communities). It also analyzes whether the items included in the EYE-DA are unbiased. The analytic approach used in the study to identify item bias is called Differential Item Functioning (DIF). In the DIF analysis, we examine if different groups of examinees (in this case, examinees of different gender and cultural backgrounds) have the same probability of success in the items, after controlling for their level of ability in the domain under consideration (Zumbo, 1999; Clauser & Mazor, 1998; Hambleton, 1991).

Luana Marotta is a full-time Master’s in Sociology student at University of New Brunswick and currently works as a part-time research assistant at the Canadian Research Institute for Social Policy (CRISP). Luana’s research interests include socio-economic inequalities in educational systems, school effectiveness, health development in childhood and quantitative methods applied to social research. Her current research focuses on criteria of measurement quality, particularly issues related to the validity of instruments used in social surveys. For her master thesis, she will analyze the occurrence of item bias in the Early Years Evaluation – Direct Assessment (EYE-DA), a pre-school screening tool used to measure children’s developmental skills.