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New research confirms that good typing skills and keyboard confidence significantly boost NAPLAN Writing Task scores.

Massive boost to NAPLAN Writing Task results

Our research, published here has shown that Year 5 students who have learned to type with the leading touch-typing tutor, Typing Tournament Online have a clear advantage and a pathway to improved NAPLAN scores for the whole class. On average, the result for children in the class will be boosted by 7 marks. That is 37% of a year’s progress in the Writing Task.

The growing imperative for typing skills

While many voices have long made the case to raise the status of keyboard skills in school education, recent developments may be about to fundamentally change the landscape.  Firstly, the NAPLAN Review Final Report 2020 – p84 has strongly recommended that the writing composition tasks should continue to transition to online formats for Year 5 and above.  Secondly, the Australian Writing Survey p7 has found that a majority of school teachers do not feel equipped to teach keyboard skills, underlining the critical role of educational software resources.

This imperative for typing skills is now being reflected in a wide range of curricula, educational practice and the use of online testing. The ACARA Literacy Progressions HwK1 – HwK8 mandate automaticity with keyboard skills.

Typing skills that make a difference are easily attainable in the classroom

High typing speeds are not necessarily the dominant aim in primary school.  Handwriting in primary children is estimated to average 10-13 words per minute, with few achieving 20 wpm.  So, a typing speed test ability of 18-20 wpm would translate to matching or exceeding handwriting speed in most practical circumstances.  Earlier research has shown that weekly use of Typing Tournament Online increases average typing speeds by 6 words per minute (wpm) over a school term, meaning that speeds of 18-20 wpm are a realistic target for middle primary students with many classes regularly achieving typing speeds of over 45 WPM.

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