Date of Award

Spring 2-24-2016

Degree Type


Degree Name

EdD Education Leadership, Management and Policy


Education Leadership, Management and Policy


Christopher Tienken, Ed.D

Committee Member

Gerard Babo, Ed.D.

Committee Member

Luke Stedrak, Ed.D


Demographic Variables and Achievement, Standardized, High Stakes, Achievement, NJ ASK Achievement, Predictive Test Results


This correlational, explanatory, longitudinal study sought to determine the combination of community and family-level demographic variables found in the 2010 U.S. Census data that most accurately predicted a New Jersey school district’s percentage of students scoring proficient or above on the 2010, 2011, and 2012 NJ ASK 7 in Language Arts and Mathematics. Analysis included simultaneous multiple linear regression and hierarchical linear regression. The population for this study included 100% of New Jersey school districts containing at least 25 valid NJ ASK scores in Language Arts and Mathematics for the years 2010-2012 and complete 2010 census data for the communities each district serves. Charter school districts, technical schools, regional school districts, and school districts not containing seventh grade students were excluded from the study. The results of this study revealed that using the (a) percentage of all people under poverty, (b) percentage of community members with a bachelor’s degree, and (c) percentage of families with an income of $200,000 or more, which account for an individual’s community and family social capital, the percentage of students scoring Proficient or above, at the district level, were accurately predicted within the standard error of the estimate for 72.3% to 76.8% of the total districts’ Language Arts portion and 71.0% to 74.3% of the total districts’ Mathematics portions for the 2010-2012 NJ ASK 7. This study is unique in that the same three community and family-level demographic variables combined to predict assessment results over a three-year period. Moreover, the results from this study contribute to the existing research and demonstrate multiple measures should be used to make high-stakes decisions in education.