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Partnership for Accessible Reading Assessment (PARA) Research. Martha Thurlow National Center on Educational Outcomes University of Minnesota. Research Program Assumptions. Assumption #1: We do not know everything about what goes into accessible reading assessment yet.

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partnership for accessible reading assessment para research
Partnership for Accessible Reading Assessment (PARA) Research

Martha Thurlow

National Center on Educational Outcomes

University of Minnesota

slide2

Research Program Assumptions

Assumption #1:We do not know everything about what goes into accessible reading assessment yet.

Assumption #2:Preliminary research must inform design of accessible assessment.

Assumption #3:Both preliminary and experimental research will inform development of Principles and Guidelines for future assessments.

slide3

Three Major Research Question Areas

  • What characteristics of current assessment practices hinder accessibility?
  • What characteristics of students require more accessible assessment of reading?
  • What characteristics would accessible assessment have?
slide4

Two Research Phases

Study Phases

Current

Assessment Characteristics

Accessible Assessment Characteristics

Student Characteristics

Exploration

Confirmation

slide5

Sample of Studies

Study

Phases

Current Assessment Characteristics

Accessible Assessment Characteristics

Student Characteristics

State Documents

Exploration

Confirmation

State Documents Analysis – Identifying what is assessed in reading relative to state standards (via test specifications), analyzing accommodation policies for reading assessments, and examining current test forms for characteristics that promote and hinder accessibility.

slide7

Sample of Studies

Study

Phases

Current Assessment Characteristics

Accessible Assessment Characteristics

Student Characteristics

Literature+

Exploration

Confirmation

Literature Scans+ – Literature and Web site reviews, as well as input and feedback from organizations and experts to describe disabilities, general approaches to reading instruction, and assessment of reading for those disabilities that affect reading.

slide8

Sample of Studies

Study

Phases

Current Assessment Characteristics

Accessible Assessment Characteristics

Student Characteristics

Expert Review

Exploration

Confirmation

Expert Review – Using a variety of procedures (focus group, MACB, Delphi), select accessible assessment practices based on likelihood of effectiveness (improve performance), validity (retain reading construct integrity), feasibility (practical to implement)

slide9

Sample of Studies

Study

Phases

Current Assessment Characteristics

Accessible Assessment Characteristics

Student Characteristics

Exploration

“Pictures” Study

Confirmation

Pictures Study – “Pictures” or other interest items (decorative graphics, icons, etc.) that are not needed to answer test items are randomly assigned to control and experimental groups to confirm which practices differentially suppress performance.

slide10

Sample of Studies

Study

Phases

Current Assessment Characteristics

Accessible Assessment Characteristics

Student Characteristics

Exploration

Nomination + Scrutiny

Confirmation

Nomination + Scrutiny Study – Information gathered from exploration phase used to solicit teacher nominations of students who are poorly assessed under current assessment practices. Students will be observed, individual assessment data examined, and think aloud procedures used to confirm the need for accessible assessment.

slide11

Reasons For Inadequate Measurement of Student’s Reading Knowledge and Skills

  • Limited reading fluency obscures comprehension capabilities.
  • Difficulty with sophisticated comprehension obscures basic reading skills.
  • Has strengths that typical tests do not cover.
  • Responds poorly to standardized testing circumstances or materials.
slide12

Sample of Studies

Study

Phases

Current Assessment Characteristics

Accessible Assessment Characteristics

Student Characteristics

Exploration

Differential Boost Study

Confirmation

Differential Boost Study – Conduct experiments with students (those identified from Nomination Study as inaccurately assessed by current state tests) using random assignment to experimental and control groups to confirm which practices (e.g., no interest graphics, motivation) differentially enhance (boost) performance.