Element 8

ELEMENT 8 is the continuation of the ELEMENT study on the development of reading and mathematics proficiency in grades 4 to 6 of Berlin elementary schools (Principal Investigator: Prof. Dr. Rainer Lehmann, Department of Empirical Educational Research, Humboldt University of Berlin). The study has been extended to grade 8 under the auspices of our Research Center in collaboration with Professor Lehmann’s department.

ELEMENT 8 pursues two major goals:

  • First, the study aims to reconstruct students’ transition to secondary schooling. The main questions to be addressed are whether families followed the recommendation given by the elementary school at the transition to secondary level, and which student-level (e.g., achievement, family background, motivation to learn) and class-level (e.g., mean achievement level, social composition of the student body) characteristics predict that recommendation, parents’ educational aspirations, and the type of secondary school attended.
  • Second, the development of the students’ achievement and motivation after their transition to the tracked secondary school system will be examined. Eighth graders’ achievement in the domains of mathematics, German, and English will be assessed, and further family background and psychosocial characteristics will be surveyed by means of a student questionnaire. The focus will be on differential learning and developmental trajectories across the secondary tracks and on how learning and developmental environments specific to the different tracks affect the students’ academic and motivational development.


Data collection and data processing will be carried out in 2007; first results will be presented in 2008.

Element 8-Team

Marko Neumann
Jürgen Baumert
Kai Maaz
Ulrich Trautwein

Project Coordinator:
Michaela Kropf

in Cooperation with:
Rainer Lehmann, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin