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June 17, 2013. Smarter Balanced Assessment Summary. Introduction. developed by a multistate consortia of 26 states funded by the U. S. Dept. of Education based on the new Common Core State Standards

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  • developed by a multistate consortia of 26 states funded by the U. S. Dept. of Education
  • based on the new Common Core State Standards
  • a balanced set of measures that will provide student data that should drive instruction and an accurate measure of student progress toward college and career readiness
  • used an evidence-based design to guide its development
  • focused on improving teaching and learning
a balanced assessment system
A Balanced Assessment System

Summative assessments

Benchmarked to college and career readiness

Teachers and schools have information and tools they need to improve teaching and learning

Common Core State Standards specify

K-12 expectations for college and career readiness

All students leave high school college and career ready

Teacher resources for

formative assessment practices

to improve instruction

Interim assessments Flexible, open, used for actionable feedback



summative assessments
Summative Assessments


  • will be administered online in the last 12 weeks of the school year.
  • are designed to provide measures of student progress toward obtaining the knowledge and skills required to be college and career ready.
  • will use computer adaptive testing that will provide student data on a full range of achievement with a quick turnaround of results.
  • will produce composite content scores based on computer adaptive and performance tasks.
  • will describe both student achievement and growth of student learning.
  • are designed as untimed tests. Approximate testing times are four hours for ELA and three and a half hours for mathematics.
  • may be taken twice.



optional interim assessments
Optional Interim Assessments


  • provide results that are reported on the same scale as summative assessments.
    • Includes performance tasks
  • require a large teacher role in developing and scoring constructed response and performance tasks.
  • allow flexibility for administration at strategic points during the school year.
  • allow teachers the flexibility to select item sets that provide a focused measure of specific content clusters within the CCSS.
  • are a tool to assist teachers to better understand students’ strengths and weaknesses.



optional formative assessments
Optional Formative Assessments


are research-based instructional tools available to help teachers differentiate instruction.

will provide resources for teachers on how to collect and use information on student success.

are used to better understand student learning needs.



online reporting system
Online Reporting System
  • will show student achievement and progress toward mastery of CC and college and career readiness.
  • will make results available to students, parents, teachers, and administrators.
content specifications
Content Specifications
  • is a bridge document that links the Common Core State Standards to Smarter Balanced Assessment claims and targets.
  • prioritize the standards into high, medium, and low.
  • “Claims” are the broad statements of the assessment system’s learning outcomes, each of whichrequires evidencethat articulates the types of data/observations that will support interpretations of competence towards achievement of the claims
  • Overall Claim
    • (Grades 3-8) Students can demonstrate progress towards college and career readiness.
    • (Grade 11) Students can demonstrate college and career readiness in mathematics.

Smarter Balanced

has organized this

in one table!

math claims
Math Claims
  • Concepts and Procedures: Students can explain and apply mathematical concepts and interpret and carry out mathematical procedures with precision and fluency.
  • Problem Solving: Students can solve a range of complex well-posed problems in pure and applied mathematics, making productive use of knowledge and problem-solving strategies.
  • Communicating Reasoning: Students can clearly and precisely construct viable arguments to support their own reasoning and the reasoning of others.
  • Modeling and Data Analysis: Students can analyze complex real-world scenarios and can construct and use mathematical models to interpret and solve problems.
  • …are a set of assessment targets for each claim which describe the expectations of what will be assessed by the items and tasks within each claim.
  • …provide more detail about the range of content and the Depth of Knowledge level.
  • …can be used to support the development of high-quality items and tasks that contribute evidence to the claims.
example of math targets for claim 2
Example of Math Targets for Claim 2
  • Target A: Apply mathematics to solve well-posed problems arising in everyday life, society, and the workplace. (DOK 2, 3)
  • Target B: Select and use appropriate tools strategically. (DOK 1, 2)
  • Target C: Interpret results in the context of a situation. (DOK 2)
  • Target D: Identify important quantities in a practical situation and map their relationships. (DOK 1, 2, 3)
ela claims
ELA Claims
  • 1. Literary and Informational Text: Students can read closely and analytically to comprehend a range of increasingly complex literary and informational texts. (45% Literary and 55% Informational)
  • 2. Writing: Students can produce effective and well-grounded writing for a range of purposes and audiences. (35% Argumentative, 35% Expository, and 30% Narrative)
  • 3. Speaking and Listening: Students can employ effective speaking and listening skills for a range of purposes and audiences. (This will be assessed through a performance task.)
  • Research: Students can engage in research/inquiry to investigate topics, and to analyze, integrate, and present information. (This will be assessed through a performance task.)
example of ela targets for claim 4
Example of ELA Targets for Claim 4
  • Summative Assessment Targets – Claim 4 Research (These will be simulated searches to be completed in one day.)

1 – Plan/research (DOK 3, 4)

2 – Analyze/interpret multiple resources (DOK 3, 4)

3 – Analyze information/resources (DOK 3)

4 – Use evidence (DOK 3, 4)

5 – Language/vocabulary use (DOK 1, 2)

6 – Edit/clarify (DOK 1)

7 – Technology use (DOK 1, 2)


Common Core State Standards


Assessment Target


Student Response

hess cognitive rigor matrix
Hess’ Cognitive Rigor Matrix
  • The Cognitive Rigor matrix combines two common taxonomies that categorize levels of cognition-Webb’s Depth of Knowledge Level and Bloom’s Cognitive Process Dimensions.
  • The matrix is a useful aid for guiding the development of items at different depth of knowledge levels.
  • There is a specific matrix available for ELA and Math.
webb s depth of knowledge levels
Webb’s Depth-of-Knowledge Levels
  • The level of complexity of the cognitive demand.
    • Level 1: Recall and Reproduction
      • Requires eliciting information such as a fact, definition, term, or a simple procedure, as well as performing a simple algorithm or applying a formula.
    • Level 2: Basic Skills and Concepts
      • Requires the engagement of some mental processing beyond a recall of information.
    • Level 3: Strategic Thinking and Reasoning
      • Requires reasoning, planning, using evidence, and explanations of thinking.
    • Level 4: Extended Thinking
      • Requires complex reasoning, planning, developing, and thinking most likely over an extended period of time.
presentation resources
Presentation Resources

Sue Gendron with International Center for Leadership in Education

Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium