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Ntinda Office:
35 Martyrs Way, Ntinda
P.O.Box 7066
Tel: 256-414-286635/6/7/8
Fax: 256-414-289397

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Tel:  256-312-260753
Fax: 256-414-287832

: : National Assessment of Progress in Education (NAPE)
National Assessment refers to an assessment done at the national level. National assessment carried out on the education system refers to the assessment of the performance of the whole education system of a country. It is meant to determine the achievement levels of learners on the curriculum over a period of time. In Uganda this kind of national assessment of the performance of the education system is called National Assessment of Progress in Education (NAPE)

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Latest NAPE Reports 2010


Why NAPE in Uganda?

Conscious of the need to obtain information on what learners actually learn in school, many countries now operate what are variously called national assessments, system assessments, learning assessments, or assessment of learning outcomes (Greaney & Kellaghan, 1996).  In Uganda the Education Policy Review Commission (1989), reported lack of reliable and up-to-date data on educational indicators.  The only assessment information that was used for monitoring and evaluation was based on public examinations such as Primary Leaving Examination (PLE), the Uganda Certificate of Education (UCE) examination results.  However, public examinations are done only at the end of a cycle of education and are designed to serve primarily as instruments for certification and selection of learners into institutions of higher learning.

Uganda currently has a special interest in monitoring the performance of learners in its education system, particularly at the primary and secondary levels for two reasons.  First, Uganda spends an appreciable amount of resources on education, considering it to be the key to success and development.  Second, many reforms have been introduced in the system and there is need to assess their performance and impact.  One major reform is the introduction of Universal Primary Education (UPE), which led to a growth in primary education enrolment from 2.3 million to 6.5 million pupils between 1996 and 1999 (Ministry of Education and Sports, 1999 p. xv).  National Assessment of Progress in Education (NAPE) was established in the system to determine the educational standards, as reflected by the achievement levels of pupils/students and hence monitor the changes in standards over time.

NAPE at the Primary Education Level

The first NAPE survey in Uganda was carried out in 1996, when the achievement of primary three (grade 3 or P 3) and P 6 pupils and their teachers were assessed in English and Mathematics [Uganda National Examinations Board (UNEB), 1997].  Since then, seven more assessments have been done in the same classes covering Numeracy and Literacy in English.

NAPE findings (NAPE 1999, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008) indicate that immediately after UPE, there was a decline in the quality of education, as shown by pupils low mean scores as well as the low proportions of pupils achieving the desired proficiency levels.  Nevertheless, the trend has generally reversed, as over the years relatively more pupils are reaching the required ratings.  The findings also reveal certain variables which affect pupils achievement.  Among them, is the pupils age, in which the younger children were reported to have performed better than the older ones.  These findings guide the formulation of policy aimed at raising the quality of education.

NAPE at the Secondary Education Level

In the year 2007, the government declared Universal Secondary Education (USE) starting with senior one students.  Just like it was for UPE, it is necessary to monitor the effects of such a big reform on student achievement.  At the education Sector Review (ESR) workshop held in Hotel Africana, October 2006, it was agreed that UNEB would conduct assessments in senior two to determine the student achievement levels in English Language, Mathematics and one science subject – UNEB chose Biology.

Objectives of NAPE

The main objectives of NAPE are:

(a)    Generate comprehensive information on what students know and can do in various curricular areas. 
(b)    Evaluate the effectiveness of reforms that get introduced into the education system.
(c)    Provide guidelines for the improvement of instruction and learning.
(d)    Provide guidelines on variables that affect learning achievement.
(e)    Provide data that can be used in planning and research. 

The main aim of NAPE is to have an objective means of monitoring changes in learners educational achievement at the national level.

In order to achieve this aim, NAPE carries out annual assessment (testing) of national samples in the third and sixth grade levels of primary education and senior two at the secondary education level.  In addition to tests, NAPE collects information about the context in which learning occurs, such as information about pupils/students homes and schools from the pupils /students themselves, teachers, school heads and parents.  Such information is correlated with the achievement results in order to determine the variables, which associate with pupils/students performance.

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