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Assessments. Coherent Comprehensive Continuous. Goals for Today. Make connections to previous professional learning (both ALCA and any other learning opportunities) Expand professional v ocabulary and deepen understanding focused on assessments

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Goals for today
Goals for Today

  • Make connections to previous professional learning (both ALCA and any other learning opportunities)

  • Expand professional vocabulary and deepen understanding focused on assessments

  • Reflect, evaluate and make recommendations for next year


  • Morning Session

    • Focus on the 3 C’s of Assessment – Coherent, Comprehensive, and Continuous

    • Interrelationship between Formative, Benchmark, Annual (Summative)

    • Deeper Examination: Benchmark Assessments

    • Establishing “Tools” using available PARCC Resources

  • Afternoon Session

    • Focus on Reflection and Evaluation

    • Make Recommendations for Moving Forward


  • Understand the significance of the phrase “The Continuum of Assessment”.

  • Understand the interrelationship between formative, benchmark, and annual (summative) assessment.

  • Understand the role and purpose of benchmark assessment in a comprehensive assessment system.

  • Increase comfort level of “Understanding Benchmark Assessments”

We know
We Know…

  • The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 produced an explosion of interest in the use of assessment to measure and improve student learning.

  • Educators learned that results from annual state tests—summative assessments—came too little and too late to support student learning.  

We know1
We Know…

  • Evidence from the other end of the assessment spectrum—classroom level assessments—was clear.

  • Teachers’ on-going use of assessment to guide and inform instruction—formativeassessment–effectively supports student learning (Black & Wiliam, 1998, 2001, 2004).

Let s learn more about benchmark assessment
Let’s Learn More About…Benchmark Assessment

  • Benchmark assessment, located between the two ends of the assessment spectrum, is another type of assessment.

  • Benchmark assessment, provides school administrators and teachers with important information about student learning relative to short- and long-term learning goals.

Activity explore the assessments glossaries
Activity - Explore the Assessments Glossaries

  • Focus your search on the following terms:AssessmentFormativeSummativeBenchmarkDiagnosticPortfolioRubricWork in teams to write short, friendly definitions for each of the words and to give an example for each of the terms. Feel free to add synonyms to make connections between words. 


  • Formative assessment definition: a quick check to inform the student and/or teacher about what has or has not been learned at that point.

  • Example of a formative assessment: (Quick Write) Use a 3x5 index card to have students write down what they know about a topic or term.

  •*Remember: Be prepared to do a follow-up activity where we will do a team activity to compare, expand, and/or clarify assessment terms.

Activity link
Activity Link

  • Go to Assessment Room Tab

  • Select Benchmark Topic

  • Select Activity

  • Follow Directions


  • The process of observing learning; describing, collecting, recording, scoring, and interpreting information about a student's or one's own learning.

  • Traditionally, student assessments are used to determine placement, promotion, graduation, or retention.

  • In the context of school reform, assessment is an essential tool for evaluating the effectiveness of changes in the teaching-learning process.

What is a quality a ssessment system
What is a QUALITYAssessment System?

  • Assessment data from a coherent, comprehensive and continuous system help educators monitor student learning by establishing a rich and productive foundation for understanding student achievement.

  • Assessment data is information, facts, evidence, statistics, etc. gathered over time. Data is the results of the assessment(s).


Coherent system as one that is:

  • All components of a coherent system are aligned with the key goals (standards) for student learning.  

Comprehensive system as one that is:

  • A comprehensive assessment system addresses a full range of knowledge and skills expected by standards.

  •  It provides different users at different levels in the system (district, school, classroom) with the right kinds of data, at the right level of detail, to help with decision-making

Continuous system as one that is:

  •  A system that is continuousprovides on-going streams of information about student learning throughout the year. 

Benchmark assessments
Benchmark Assessments system as one that is:

  • Benchmark assessments are common assessments given periodically throughout the school year, at specified times during a curriculum sequence. 

  • The assessments evaluate students’ knowledge and skills relative to an explicit set of longer-term learning goals.



Benchmark assessment the purpose, intended users, and uses of the one component of a comprehensive assessment system

that provides the important data needed by teachers or administrators to serve district, school, and classroom improvement needs. 

Role of benchmark assessments
Role of Benchmark Assessments the purpose, intended users, and uses of the instruments.

  • Annual state assessments provide information on how students are doing relative to annual learning standards, i.e., long-term learning goals.  

  • Formative assessment is embedded in classroom instruction and provides immediate information on short-term learning goals.   Formative assessment data can help teachers plan instruction. 

  • Benchmark assessments occupy a middle position in the assessment spectrum.  They are strategically located and administered outside daily classroom use but inside the school and district curriculum. 


  • Typically the purpose, intended users, and uses of the instruments.uniform in timing and content across classrooms and schools, benchmark assessments provide results that can be aggregated at the classroom, grade, school and district levels. 

  • This information, when provided to school and district decision-makers and teachers, serves as an interim indication of how well students are learning and raises important questions regarding instructional program and practice impact. 


Interrelationship goals and provide more immediate information that can be used to help plan and guide subsequent instruction at the school and classroom level.

Purpose of benchmark assessment
Purpose of Benchmark Assessment goals and provide more immediate information that can be used to help plan and guide subsequent instruction at the school and classroom level.

  • Purpose 1: Communicate expectations for learning

  • Purpose 2: Plan Instruction

  • Purpose 3: Monitor and evaluate learning

  • Purpose 4: Predict future performance

Purpose 1 communicate expectations for learning
Purpose 1: Communicate goals and provide more immediate information that can be used to help plan and guide subsequent instruction at the school and classroom level.Expectations for Learning

  • Benchmark assessments communicate a strong message to students, teachers, and parents about what knowledge and skills are important to learn, what knowledge is valued, and how learning will be measured.

  •  It is important to assess students using more than traditional multiple-choice formats, which usually focus on facts.


  • Constructed response items, such as essays, extended multi-part questions, portfolios, or even experiments, can provide important windows into students’ thinking and understanding. 

  • Varied assessment tasks can also communicate the expectation to all stakeholders that complex thinking and problem solving are important and should be a part of regular curriculum and instruction.

Purpose 2 plan instruction
Purpose 2: Plan Instruction multi-part questions, portfolios, or even experiments, can

  • Teachers can use the results from the 1st quarter benchmark assessment to plan subsequent instruction. 

  • When administered across classrooms, grade levels, or content areas, benchmark assessment results provide teachers an opportunity for collaborative reflection, analysis, and action. 

  • Leadership teams and school administrators can also use benchmark assessment results to plan and target specific program interventions to support student learning.

Purpose 3 monitor and evaluate learning
Purpose 3: Monitor multi-part questions, portfolios, or even experiments, can and Evaluate Learning

  • Benchmark assessments can also be used to monitor and evaluate learning by providing information on how well current programs, curriculum, or other resources are helping students achieve learning goals.

  • Benchmark assessments can help administrators or educators make mid-course modifications if data show patterns where student performance is lagging or where students are excelling. 

  • Benchmark assessment data can also be used to highlight areas where a curriculum should be refined or supplemented. 

Purpose 4 predict future performance
Purpose 4: Predict Future Performance multi-part questions, portfolios, or even experiments, can

  • Benchmark assessment can provide data to predict whether students, classes, schools and districts are on-course to meet specific year-end goals. 

  • That is, based on their current performance, are students likely to reach proficiency on the end of year state test or other annual assessments?

  • Schools and districts may use benchmark results to re-allocate resources including time, staff, professional development, technical assistance, and special interventions.  

Information on benchmark assessments may be useful to
Information on benchmark assessments may be useful to: multi-part questions, portfolios, or even experiments, can

  • Regional Comprehensive Center (RCC) staff when working with state educators to understand the role of benchmark assessments in planning and implementing a comprehensive statewide assessment system.

  • District-level administrators when providing professional development opportunities to staff, including principals and teacher leaders, as they use benchmark assessment data to examine program and teacher effectiveness.

  • School sites interested in building capacity on how to use benchmark assessment data effectively to improve programs and instruction.  

  • Teachers and teacher leaders in understanding the importance of using benchmark assessments across classrooms to examine student learning and design subsequent instruction for students.   

Criteria for selection and use
Criteria for Selection and Use multi-part questions, portfolios, or even experiments, can

  • Hundreds of benchmark assessments are currently available. 

  • They range from expensive, high-tech web versions to inexpensive, locally developed assessments tied to specific curriculum. 


  • Validity multi-part questions, portfolios, or even experiments, can

  • Alignment with Learning Goals

  • Reliability

  • Fairness and Bias

  • Instructional Sensitivity

  • Utility


Organizational support
Organizational Support multi-part questions, portfolios, or even experiments, can

Careful planning and consideration of the following topics is helpful in getting benchmark assessment systems in place:

  • ease and efficiency of implementation and scoring procedures

  • management of information systems that provide easy data access and analysis

  • organizational supports for appropriate interpretation and use

  • instructional supports for teachers and students

  • time for learning, analyzing and interpreting data in collaboration with colleagues


  • http:// multi-part questions, portfolios, or even experiments, can

  • Rural Oklahoma District Puts Pearson Benchmark to the Test


Activity discussion
Activity: Discussion of Assessment”.

  • Working in teams…

  • Discuss what is meant by “The Continuum of Assessment”. Be prepared to share your interpretation.

  • Write down 6 important facts you have learned, relearned, and/or unlearned about assessments.

Group discussion
Group Discussion of Assessment”.

  • Let’s Talk…

  • Pros (Positive Impact)

  • Cons (Negative Impact)

Who is developing next generation k 12 assessments for ccss english and math
Who is developing next-generation K-12 assessments for CCSS of Assessment”. English and Math?





What is available
What is available??? of Assessment”.

  • As of April 2013

    • Performance Level Descriptors

    • Blueprints

    • Test Spec

    • Limited Question Prototypes