TEA Releases STAAR EOC Data

On August 1, TEA announced the timetable for the release of 2023 STAAR reporting data. Final assessment reports will be available to districts on Friday, August 11, and statewide summary reports will be available on the TEA website Wednesday, August. 16. A—F ratings will be released on Tuesday, September 26.  A link to the letter can be found here: TEA Spring 2023 STAAR Grades 3-8 Reporting Update.


STAAR Redesign Highlights Need for Keyboarding Automaticity

The redesigned online STAAR assessment puts keyboarding automaticity in the spotlight as educators and parents evaluate students’ readiness for the online testing experience and new question types. Keyboarding is required in the new K-5 Technology Applications TEKS adopted in 2022. In addition to computer-based testing, the students need keyboarding proficiency to succeed with online assignments and textbooks.  Students’ complex motor skills develop at different rates, and students must integrate visual and kinesthetic information when typing. When students lack automaticity, the cognitive load required to type or write an answer to an open-ended question is much higher. “Students who key at a functional level are able to invest more attention into the thought process of writing composition, and may ultimately become more successful at those computer-based tasks.” A link to the study can be found here: Keyboarding Instruction: Comparison of Techniques for Improved Keyboarding Skills in Elementary Students.

Time and practice are required for students to develop automaticity and fluency. Do all students, especially at the elementary grades, have enough time and practice to develop mastery of keyboarding? The need to accelerate learning in reading and math as a result of interrupted learning during COVID may result in less instructional time devoted to keyboarding.  Unfortunately, many students develop inefficient keyboarding habits, such as using two fingers instead of two hands, as a result of too little guided practice. It’s much more difficult to overcome poor keyboarding habits; students need to learn efficient techniques from the start. Many districts are re-evaluating their instructional priorities as keyboarding fluency affects students’ achievement in all content areas.


Keyboarding Webinar

Learning Without Tears invites educators to attend a 30-minute webinar August 10, 17, or 24 at 4 p.m. to learn more about their resource, Keyboarding Without Tears with NEW Assessment Accelerator, featuring practice items that mirror item types in the redesigned STAAR.  Register at this link: Keyboarding Without Tears Overview

Learn more about Keyboarding Without Tears Efficacy Data: KWT Infographic.