Glossary

  • Curriculum

    The overall teaching and learning program offered by an individual school. It includes all subjects and activities that students experience, not only in the classroom but also in after-school clubs or on school visits. When the word “curriculum” is preceded by the name of a school subject (e.g. science curriculum), it refers to anything that students are taught in and out of the classroom that relates to that subject.

  • Curriculum Standards

    Standards specifying what all Qatari students should know, understand and be able to do at each grade level. They also describe what should be taught at each grade level. In Qatar’s new educational system, curriculum standards have been developed in four academic areas: Arabic, English, mathematics and science.

  • Enumeration

    The gathering of a comprehensive list of principals, teachers, students and parents, and their relationship to a particular school. The fall 2003 enumeration also involved the collection of class schedules for teachers and students.

  • Independent Schools

    A government–funded school that is granted autonomy to carry out its education mission and objectives while being held accountable to terms agreed to in an operating contract.

  • International Benchmarks

    Standard levels against which educational performance, provision or processes can be compared with those in countries that achieve excellence on international assessments. This includes international comparisons of test scores, number of years spent in school, teaching time per subject, curricular content and skills taught at each grade level, and other such variables

  • K-12

    Kindergarten through 12th grade.

  • Pilot Test

    The preliminary administration of a test to students for the purpose of determining the functioning of the test questions and/or the testing process. It should never be used for evaluating students.

  • PIRLS

    An acronym for the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study. This is an international testing tool used to assess the reading skills of fourth grade students using stories and informational texts appropriate to their grade level. This stage of development is believed to be important in that, at the fourth grade, students have learned to read and should now be reading to learn. The assessment includes a combination of multiple choice and open-ended questions.

  • PISA

    An acronym for the Program for International Student Assessment. This is an internationally standardized testing tool used to assess the literacy skills of 15-year-old students in reading, mathematics and science. All questions on the assessment are open-ended.

  • Professional Development

    A term given to continuing educational opportunities for teachers and principals. It includes training to learn the latest teaching techniques and approaches, so educators can stay current in their fields and students can benefit from the latest methods.

  • Qatar Comprehensive Educational Assessment

    A measurement tool that allows comparisons of performance across schools and classrooms, and the appraisal of growth in student learning over time. A series of standarized tests, the Assessment measures student knowledge of Arabic, English, mathematics and science using a multiple choice and essay format (other formats are being developed for the future). Starting in 2004, it will be administered to all public and private Arabic school students in Qatar on an annual basis.

  • Qatar Comprehensive School Survey (QCSS)

    An annual program of surveys seeking the views of principals, teachers, social workers, parents and students on education in Qatar.

  • Qatar National Education Database System (QNEDS)

    A “data warehouse” system for storing, analyzing, and disseminating education and attitudinal data (test scores and survey results). QNEDS is being developed by the Evaluation Institute.

  • School Evaluation

    A system of monitoring, reviewing and judging school performance by utilizing information from a range of sources. These include student test scores; school records and reports; independent on-site observations; and surveys of students, parents, teachers, social workers and principals that generate descriptions of their schools, practices and views on education.

  • School Report Card

    An annual report on the characteristics and performance of each public and private Arabic school in Qatar. Developed by the Evaluation Institute, the report card will provide information about each school, including student test results and descriptive and evaluative findings from surveys of students, parents, teachers, social workers, principals.