2021 Convening on Through Year Assessments

Claims & Evidence for Through Year Assessments: A Convening

Join us for a virtual convening, hosted by the Center for Assessment, on November 15 and 16. Over 4 sessions, we’ll be discussing the challenges, risks, and opportunities associated with through year assessment systems. Attendance is free, but pre-registration is required.

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Implementing an Innovative State Assessment System While We’re Still Building It: 

One definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and yet expecting different results. Recently, I have been thinking about how this adage applies to innovative state assessment systems—those systems states are developing that offer new ways of measuring student proficiency for use in state accountability systems. I have concluded that one of the reasons that successful innovation in state assessment systems has been so rare is that we continue to ask states to implement innovative assessment systems before the state or the system is ready.

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Educational Assessment and the Pandemic: What Have We Learned?  

A year ago the pandemic changed everything, including the way we think about educational assessment. Although COVID-19 was well on its way to becoming a global pandemic in early 2020, it wasn’t until the second week of March that I, like many Americans, realized the full scale of the impact.  Then, the pandemic suddenly became one of those rare things that I never thought about until it was the only thing I thought about.   

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Here Comes the Sun – Research and Testing Conferences are Back!

The arrival of spring brings with it the spring 2021 conference season – another sign that we may be moving out of the extended COVID-19 winter. Among the first events canceled last spring, annual educational research and testing conferences are returning this spring, albeit with virtual formats. Center professionals welcome these opportunities to share our work with the broader academic and practice communities and to learn about the latest thinking and research that will shape our future.

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Including Missing Data in the Estimate of the Impact of the Pandemic on Student Learning

It has been a year since COVID-19 made it impossible for states to administer state assessment programs last spring. Since then, multiple studies using data from commercial “interim” assessments have been put forward to help the field understand the pandemic’s impact on student learning. Through these special “learning loss” studies, assessment vendors have attempted to shed light on the effects of COVID-19 on learning nationally. In this three-part CenterLine series, we address the practical implications of these studies for learning recovery.

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Making Use of Missing Data to Plan Interventions for Recovery

It has been a year since COVID-19 made it impossible for states to administer state assessment programs last spring. Since then, multiple studies using data from commercial “interim” assessments have been put forward to help the field understand the pandemic’s impact on student learning. Through these special “learning loss” studies, assessment vendors have attempted to shed light on the effects of COVID-19 on learning nationally. In this three-part CenterLine series, we address the practical implications of these studies for learning recovery.

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Making Sense of Recent COVID-19 Impact Studies by Interim Assessment Vendors

It has been a year since COVID-19 made it impossible for states to administer state assessment programs last spring. Since then, multiple studies using data from commercial “interim” assessments have been put forward to help the field understand the pandemic’s impact on student learning. Through these special Covid-19 impact studies, assessment vendors have attempted to shed light on the effects of the pandemic on learning nationally. In this three-part CenterLine series, we address the practical implications of these studies for learning recovery.

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Letting Go of Labels in School Accountability Systems

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which is the current reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), contains federal accountability requirements wherein all states must create an accountability system for identifying schools for support on the basis of a collection of indicators, with the majority of weight given to statewide achievement tests scores. ESSA refers to this requirement as “Annual Meaningful Differentiation” and prescribes the aggregation of information across accountability indicators.

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Classroom Assessment Literacy is Needed Now More Than Ever

The pandemic has surfaced disparities among students with respect to equitable educational access, opportunities, and outcomes in new ways. For example, simple differences in learning environments (e.g., remote, hybrid, in-person) likely result in considerable variation as to where students are starting and ending their learning journeys this year and into next year. This situation creates a heightened awareness of how important it is to collect meaningful information about student progress toward proficiency at the classroom level. Enter the need for classroom assessment literacy. 

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Could Two Through Year Assessment Designs Provide Both Summative and Instructional Information?

In a past post, I showed the logical conflict that exists for an assessment to claim to provide both end-of-the-year summative evidence and instructionally-useful evidence intended to improve student learning within the year.

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Why Has it Been So Difficult to Develop a Viable Through Year Assessment?

There has been a buzz that “through year” or “through course” assessment represents a better way for states to assess than today’s pervasive end of the year summative assessment.  However, no through year assessment has yet been implemented statewide with results acknowledged as acceptable for use comparable to end of year summative assessment scores.

Why Has it Been so Difficult to Get a Viable Through Year Assessment?

New & Noteworthy

Henry Braun
Incoming Chair of the Center’s Board of Trustees, Dr. Henry Braun, just received the prestigious E.F. Lindquist Award from the American Educational…

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Recent Centerline Blog Posts

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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.

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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

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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!