Placement by Age Versus Placement by Academic Ability Essay

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Placement by Age versus Placement by Academic Ability Some educators would argue that students should be placed in grade levels based on their age. Others believe age is not as important a factor as a student’s academic ability. Placing students in grade levels based on their academic ability can be both beneficial and harmful to a child’s educational development. When students with similar academic abilities are grouped together student achievement and social participation is increased. When students are grouped together based on age alone teachers are required to vary the pace information is delivered. This may reduce the progression of more advanced learners. One benefit of being grouped with children who share the same academic…show more content…
When students are placed together by age rather than academic ability the teacher is required to vary the pace in which subjects are taught. Students who learn at a slower pace will need information repeated and at times individual help is required to ensure a clear understanding is provided. When more time is spent on individual students others may lose interest and become distracted. When students of different academic abilities are grouped together; if the teacher is not skilled at instructing different developmental levels the more advanced will not progress to their fullest potential and the risk of having the slower learners falling further behind becomes present. Research has shown that children who are grouped together based on academic ability achieve more academically. Having that knowledge, studies conducted by Linley Lloyd in 2000 show that most parents were happier when their children are among the youngest in the classroom (2001). Many parents state “the increased opportunity for stimulation from older students” is the reason they prefer multiage groupings (Holloway, 2001). Today many schools have found a way to utilize both academic grouping and age grouping throughout the classroom. Grouping within the classroom is very common in many elementary schools in the United States. Grouping within the classroom consists of one class with students similar in age,
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