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Tips on How to Improve Student Test Scores

An accomplished Illinois administrator, educator, and principal, Andrew Jordan has close to a decade of experience in the field of education working in various institutions. Among Andrew Jordan’s key career roles was a principal at West Carroll Primary School in Savanna, Illinois where he was in charge of all school operations and successfully increased test scores by 20 percent.

With Common Core State Standards being implemented across the US, most teachers and school administrators are focused on improving student test scores. Even though schools need to work collectively and raise their test scores, below are techniques teachers can use to help students improve their test scores.

1. Teaching students test-taking strategies is a key step that can lead to good results, especially for lower-performing students. Some of the strategies include arriving at an answer by eliminating the answers which are wrong and looking for information in a question that might provide a hint to the answer.

2. Analyze student data to discover areas where students have weaknesses. Teachers can do this by carefully evaluating the practice data to check for weak areas that need attention. Student data analysis can be time-consuming, but there are software applications that can gather all student data in a single online location for analysis.

3. Increase parent involvement by ensuring parent-teacher communication remains consistent throughout the year. Students tend to perform better in school when their parents and guardians are involved. There should be an open-door policy that encourages parents to stay informed about their children’s education. Parents can help in the library, monitor the lunchroom and tutor students.


The Difference Between an Ed.S. and a Ed.D.

Based in Illinois, Andy Jordan is an experienced principal who currently leads a K-12 school. Andy Jordan belongs to the Illinois Principal Association and holds an Ed.S. in educational leadership with a superintendency endorsement.

Educational professionals who already have master’s degrees and are considering their next step in higher education generally consider pursuing either an education specialist degree (Ed.S.) or a doctor of education (Ed.D.). The choice can seem confusing, but the two degrees have slightly different benefits.

The Ed.D. is the education equivalent to a Ph.D.—in fact, some schools are considering eliminating the Ed.D. and only offering a Ph.D. in education. Regardless, this degree is focused on research. Students must write dissertations and contribute new knowledge to the field before achieving this degree.

On the other hand, the Ed.S. is more geared toward individuals looking to develop qualifications for a certain type of job. This degree qualifies individuals for administrative positions, such as superintendent or principal.

Both degrees are advanced graduate degrees, but with different focuses. It is a good idea to determine your career path before pursuing either.

Andrew Jordan

Illinois administrator and educator Andrew Jordan spent several years as principal of West Carroll Primary School, where he oversaw more than 450 students and 64 staff members, led district leadership teams, and handled finances for primary school accounts. Previously, Andrew Jordan served as assistant principal with West Prairie High School, where he was charged with creating a district-wide safety plan and training staff. He currently co-owns J3 Timing, a race timing company working with various length running events. 

A graduate of Western Illinois University, Mr. Jordan received a master of arts in educational leadership and an Educational Specialist (EdS) degree, a requisite to becoming a school superintendent. During his graduate studies, he performed in the top five percent of students in the university. He holds a bachelor of arts in kinesiology and physical education from Northern Illinois University. 

Active within his community, Mr. Jordan is a Freemason and a member of the local chamber of commerce. He belongs to professional organizations including the Illinois Association of School Business Officials and the Illinois Principals Association.

Andrew Jordan : Website