National College Testing Association 2009 Conference Remembering Our Mission Everything You Always Wanted to Know about COMPASS but Were Afraid to Ask Tim Osborn Debra FitzGerald Don Pitchford
Session Topics • COMPASS Updates • Remote Testing • Diagnostics • Demographics • Research Reports
Record COMPASS Volume • Over 6 million tests administered • Approximately 2 million students tested • 88% administered via the Internet Version
Institutions Using COMPASS • 1,085 CIV sites • 126 CWV sites • 20% four year colleges/universities • 80% two year colleges • 83% on-campus • 17% high school outreach
COMPASS Enhancements • 8 new user guides available on web site http://www.act.org/compass/resources.html • New ACT “infrastructure” Data Center in November 2008, resulting in increased stability • Double entry of student ID
New Developments in 2009-2010 • VISTA release (pre-release available through ACT Help Desk; full release fall, 2009) • IE8 solution (fall, 2009) • ASSET/COMPASS paper/pencil solution development in process • Phase out COMPASS and ASSET license fees
2009-10 COMPASS Pricing • September 1, 2009 • Site License Fee – phase out on anniversary date • Volume breaks as before • Unit Price – two schedules, depending on site license expiration date
2009-10 ASSET Pricing • September 1, 2009 • Site License Fee – phase out on anniversary date • Volume breaks as before • Option 3 PC Score – two schedules, depending on site license expiration date
2009-10 ASSET Pricing • September 1, 2009 • Volume breaks as before • Option 1 & 2 PC Score
Remote Testing Updates • Remote testing completion notices e-mailed to originating site • Updated remote test site locator based on zip code distances at www.act.org/compass/admin/index.html
Remote Testing Network An analysis of zip codes for over 20,000 student applicants spread across the 50 states shows that 50% are within 10 miles or less of a COMPASS National Remote Testing Site, 95% are within 54 miles or less, and just 1% are more than 100 miles from a COMPASS Remote Testing site. Here's How You Do It
Goals for the Diagnostic Measures • To gather information to improve instructional plan for individual students • To provide a narrowly focused, efficient means of determining a student’s skill level in math, writing and reading
Placement Vs Diagnostic Measures • Placement scores help schools more accurately place students into courses appropriate for their skill levels. • Diagnostic scores help target developmental instructions where each student needs it most. The scores can pinpoint the strengths and weaknesses of individual students in particular areas.
MATH Diagnostics - PreAlgebra • Integers • Fractions • Decimals • Exponents, square roots, scientific notation • Ratios and proportions • Percentages • Averages
MATH Diagnostics - Algebra • Substitution • Setting up equations • Basic operations/polynomials • Factoring polynomials • Linear equations/one variable • Linear equations/two variable • Exponents/radicals • Rational expressions
Writing Diagnostics • Punctuation • Spelling • Capitalization • Usage • Verb formation/agreement • Relationships of clauses • Shifts in construction • Organization
Reading Diagnostics • Vocabulary • Reading Comprehension • Reader Profile
Interpretation of Diagnostic Scores • 1 - 40 (Low) 41 - 75 (Mid) 76 - 99 (Upper) • Instructional messages should include reference to specific units or chapters of materials, along with suggested steps, location information, web page information, costs, etc…for accessing the resources • Review students’ profile of diagnostic scores to assist in identifying strengths/weaknesses • Offer/Require retesting to confirm material has been mastered
Demographic Items • More than 30 preworded items • - 7 are required • - use the Educational Planning Form • Provides up to 40 locally developed questions • - 30 multiple choice questions (10 responses/item) • - 10 numeric response items (4-digits) • May appear before the test or after the test
Standard Individual Report • Other items on report include: test scores (placement and/or diagnostics, testing times, customized course placement messages
Student Readiness Inventory The Student Readiness Inventory (SRI) is a new assessment from ACT that helps postsecondary educators evaluate students’ psychosocial and study skill attributes, determine their levels of academic risk, and apply specific interventions to help them persist in their studies and achieve academic success.
COMPASS Research Reports • Entering Student Descriptive Report (ESDR) • Returning Student Retention Report (RSRR) • Course Placement Service (CPS) • Underprepared Student Follow-Up Report (UPSFUR)
ESDR For campus, system, state, and national use in describing the characteristics, needs, plans, and skills of students who initiate the “becoming a student” process; includes options for creating subgroup reports for groups of students of special interest (students interested in a particular program, from a particular high school, with particular types of needs, etc.) NO CHARGE
Can Help Answer • What are the most important needs of my first time enrolling students? • What proportion of entering students plan to complete a four-year or more college degree program? • What academic backgrounds do my COMPASS-tested entering students have? • How do the tested abilities of my COMPASS-tested first-years compare to those of the state or nationwide?
National COMPASS ESDR Reports • National ESDR posted October 2008 http://www.act.org/compass/reports/research.html • Broken out by • 2-year and 4-year institutions • All students, 19 and younger, 20 and older • 1,123,756 student records • State reports available for select states • 2009 report available in October Here's How You Order Your ESDR
RSRR For campus, system, and national use in identifying the retention patterns occurring at the institution and identifying the student characteristics that are related to those retention patterns; includes options for creating subgroup reports. NO CHARGE
Can Help Answer • What proportion of our first-time enrolling students re-enroll in the following term, and how do the abilities differ between those students who persist versus those who do not persist? • How do the background characteristics of students with different patterns of enrollment compare? • Are there greater percentages of specific student needs for students that are not successful versus those that are successful?
CPS For campus use in describing and evaluating the outcomes of course placement practices on campus, providing information to assist in the setting or fine-tuning of placement cutoff scores; also provides an option for developing placement cutoff score linkages between pairs of placement measures from different tests (COMPASS/ASSET, COMPASS/ACT, COMPASS/local instruments) $250 for 10 Courses
Can Help Answer • Are my current cutoff scores too high or too low? • Are our first-year students being place in the appropriate college courses? • If we were to raise the cutoff score for a particular course, what percentage of our entering students would be placed in the lower-level course? • Can we make more accurate placement decisions for a mathematics course if and/or COMPASS/ACT/ASSET mathematics scores and high school mathematics grades are used jointly to make the decisions? • How well is my locally developed placement test functioning? • For a given cutoff score, what are the likely success rates of students who would be place in a course?
UPSFUR For campus use in identifying the success of underprepared students in standard courses following their participation in preparation or development courses. $235 for 5 Pairs of Courses
Can Help Answer • Do students adhere to our course placement recommendations? • Do our developmental courses improve students’ success in subsequent standard coursework?