Exploration of assessment literacy of lower primary mathematics teachers: a case of one public primary school in Kilifi Country, Kenya.


Jane Kariuki

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)

First Supervisor/Advisor

Peter Kajoro

Second Supervisor/Advisor

Dr. Geoff Tennant


Institute for Educational Development, East Africa


Performance in Mathematics has remained poor for long, in Kenya like in many other countries in the world. Among the many factors that have been associated with achievement in Mathematics, are teacher- related factors. In spite of efforts by the government to develop teachers’ capacity through such programs as SMASE, the performance has not changed significantly. Findings of other studies indicate however, such professional development programs give more emphasis to content and methodology than to assessment which is plays a key role to quality education. Assessment is not only a measure of learning but also a tool for learning. When integrated in the teaching/learning process, it becomes effective and the learners are bound to perform better. For this to be done however, the teacher ought to have the knowledge and the skills of sound assessment literacy. This study therefore explored assessment literacy of lower primary Mathematics teachers. The study sought their views on understanding of assessment, purposes of assessment, what they assess in learner and when and how they assess learners. It also sought the actions teachers take once they receive assessment feedback from learners. This qualitative case study in one primary school was carried out using interviews, lesson observation and documents analysis. Data analysis was done by organizing, coding, seeking patterns and interpreting data. The study revealed that teachers had knowledge and used variety of strategies to assess their pupils. Much of it however, was meant to audit learning. Though there were many formative assessment activities, actions were hardly taken on learners’ feedback to improve learning or adjust instructions. The study recommends that teachers equip themselves with knowledge and skills in assessment to enable them implement it with the aim of enhancing learning and hence achievement.

This document is available in the relevant AKU library