2021 Convening on Through Year Assessments

Claims & Evidence for Through Year Assessments: A Convening

The Center for Assessment hosted a successful convening of state, industry leaders, and researchers to delve into the details of through-year assessment systems. You can access all of the recordings, slide decks, and other materials here.

image

Instructing and Assessing 21st Century Skills

The Center for Assessment is partnering with PBLWorks to provide tools and resources supporting project-based instruction and assessment of 21st Century skills.

image

Oh, What a Year…Again

I titled my 2020 year-end CenterLine post, “Oh, What a Year!” with hopes that we were turning the pandemic corner. There’s no question the widespread availability of vaccines beginning in early spring 2021 gave us all a sense of hope only to have it dashed and renewed multiple times throughout this year following COVID’s ebb and flow.

image

User-Friendly Documentation and Validation Processes

Validity is the ultimate goal of any system. The concept of validity is relatively straightforward: it means that an instrument, or system, measures what it is purported to measure. Getting valid results in practice is a little more complicated. The validation process is greatly facilitated by, and perhaps even dependent upon, the availability of complete and user-friendly documentation. After all, an ineffective system of documentation can lead to ineffective implementation, which throws into question the validity of the entire system and its outputs.

image

User-Friendly Documentation and Validation Processes

Professionally and personally, we often have projects or tasks where we define desired goals or outcomes, and sometimes even identify the steps that it will take to get from where we are to where we want to be. However, we often end up frustrated and short of our goal because we have not fully documented the strategy and tactics required to achieve the desired outcome. 

Enter the difference between specifying an outcome for Halloween (i.e., a rad costume), and the strategy and tactics necessary to make it happen. 

image

Collaboratively Learning About Through Year Assessments

“Through year” or “through course” assessment systems are rapidly proliferating as an alternative to the single, end-of-year administration of state accountability tests. There are at least ten states and associated assessment companies in various stages of exploration, design, and/or development of these systems.

image

Supporting the Improvement of Educators’ Assessment Literacy

This post is a summary of the main ideas from a symposium focused on educators’ assessment literacy presented at the 2021 NCME Classroom Assessment Conference. Slides from the session are available here

image

Break the Glass and Pull the Alarm! The Signal From Spring 2021 State Testing is Clear

I and many others were concerned that the uncertainty with interpreting Spring 2021 state summative test scores because of all the “noise” associated with the pandemic would blur any signal we were trying to hear from the data. Unfortunately, that signal is so loud that we can’t miss it. In spite of any uncertainty, we have more than enough information to pull the policy alarm!

image

Culturally Sensitive, Relevant, Responsive, and Sustaining Assessment

“Assessment practices do far more than provide information; they shape people’s understanding about what is important to learn, what learning is, and who learners are” (Moss, 2008, p. 254).

image

Why Have Many (All?) Approaches to Improve K-12 Educator Assessment Literacy Failed to Produce Significant Changes in Teacher Practices at Scale?

Most of us would agree that if the problem of improving K-12 educator assessment literacy has not been solved, it is not because of a lack of trying. A quick search of books with “assessment literacy” in the title, or a more general search for books on formative assessment or classroom assessment, returns many excellent resources written by esteemed researchers, practitioners, and scholars.

image

Using Assessment to Support Learning Acceleration: It Takes a System! 

The Oklahoma State Department of Education’s (OSDE) highest priority is keeping students and staff safe so that we can focus on learning acceleration for all students. We are also intensely focused on how assessment can be used to help address these instructional and learning needs.  To this end, in this post, I discuss the importance of a balanced system of assessment and of being very intentional about the specific purposes and uses of types of assessment within that system, especially those intended to be used to support student learning and improved instruction. 

New & Noteworthy

Recent Centerline Blog Posts

image

Selecting the Right Assessments to Monitor School Recovery from the Pandemic 

In a previous post, I (Juan) argued for the importance of a variety of tools in your assessment toolbox to help monitor recovery efforts as we come out of (or continue to wade our way through) the pandemic. In this post, we expand a bit more on assessment selection, and the types of assessments, or tools, that can be used to monitor recovery efforts and confirm evidence of progress. 

image

Monitoring COVID Recovery Efforts

“If the only tool you have is a hammer, it is tempting to treat everything as if it were a nail.” -Abraham Maslow (circa 1966, as adapted from an even older British saying).

image

Lead with the Reports

Sadly, one of the giants in the field of educational measurement has recently passed away – Dr. Ron Hambleton. The fact that Ron was one of the most prodigious and acclaimed scholars in our field is undisputed. A list of his works is astonishing in its breadth and influence, and his accolades are unmatched. Despite this, he wasn’t a distant ‘ivory tower’ professor. Communicating in ways that reached broad audiences was one of his passions – one that came through in his works, including books that an entire generation of measurement students studied. I was one of those students.