Board “Leanings” on State Assessment System David T. Conley, Ph.D. Professor, University of Oregon Director, Center for Educational Policy Research CEO, Educational Policy Improvement Center
Goals of the Paper/Presentation • Situate the current Oregon State Assessment System within a context relative to the state’s history and briefly consider the purposes of assessment in Oregon • Present a comparative analysis of a wide range of potential types of assessment along a series of key dimensions that help judge the utility of each for a series of purposes • Consider the potential purposes of different types of assessment that could conceivably be a part of a state assessment system • Identify possible purposes for the assessment types reviewed. • Summarize the type of assessment systems utilized by states for a variety of purposes • Explore a range of key policy issues directly related to the state assessment system and issues associated with them • Lay out in broad brush-strokes a vision for the statewide assessment system
Purposes of Assessment in Oregon • As identified by ODE, the purposes of the state assessment system are to: • Inform students, teachers, parents, employers, and postsecondary programs about student skill proficiencies • Provide information on student and school performance useful for policy decisions on budgets, staffing, and other matters by state elected officials, the State Board of Education, and local school districts • Support instructional program improvement • Inform the public about statewide student and school achievement in Oregon
Standardized norm-referenced achievement tests Standards-based criterion-referenced tests End-of-course exams On-demand performance tasks Extended performance tasks Project-centered tasks and exhibitions Oral examinations Moderated school-based assessment Portfolios or Collections of Evidence College admissions tests College placement examinations Industry Skill Certification Exams Teacher-generated grades Types of Assessment
Primary Possible Purposes of Assessment • Federal accountabilityrequirements (US Department of Education) • State accountability requirements (ODE, Legislature) • Local accountability requirements (parents, community) • Teacher and administrator accountability • Instructional alignment (vertically within a subject area, horizontally across grade levels) • Student course grades • Diagnostic feedback to teacher • Diagnostic feedback to student • Grade level promotion, high school graduation, college admission, college placement, skill certification • Policy decisions
State Assessment Systems • Standardized achievement test only • Standards-based test only • Standardized achievement test and standards-based test • Standards-based test and oral presentation • Standards-based test and college admissions test • Standards-based test and college placement test • Standards-based test and end-of-course test • Standards-based test, end-of-course test, and college placement test • Standardized achievement test, standards-based test, and moderated school based assessment • Standardized achievement test, standards-based test and end-of-course test • Standardized achievement test, standards-based test, end-of-course test, and college placement test • Standardized achievement test, standards-based test, end-of-course test, and college admissions test
Key Policy Issues • What must be assessed? • What should be assessed? • When should things be assessed? • How do national tests relate to state tests? • What assessment is going on in districts currently and how capable are districts of managing assessment locally? • What do students actually have to demonstrate? • How can students be motivated to do well on state exams? • What is the role of cohort models?
Considerations for Any Option • Ability to address purposes of Oregon assessment system • Acceptability to Oregon educators • Implementation challenges for Oregon educators • Time requirements for Oregon educators • Overall value for Oregon educators • Overall value for Oregon policy decisions
Workgroup Topics • Limit the number of core standards on which to base assessments • Focus state assessments on core reading, writing, math, and science standards • Encourage districts to use formative assessments • Ensure adequate rigor of core high school standards on the state assessments and any local assessments • Allow demonstration of proficiency through multiple pathways based on student educational plan and profile • Design state assessment system so that state assessments help validate teacher judgment of student performance
Potential Model: Board Leanings • In light of the various potential purposes of and issues associated with each type of assessment and combination of assessments, what are the Board’s leanings regarding the state assessment system?