Sneak Peek into the Future of Assessments

October 11th, 2012

Category: News

Yesterday, the Smarter Balanced Assessment consortia released sample test items and performance tasks – providing educators a glimpse into the future of assessment within Delaware and around the country. Smarter Balanced was created in response to states adopting the Common Core State Standards and is one of two multi-state consortia developing a Common Core-aligned state assessment. Delaware is one of the 27 governing states of Smarter Balanced. Like the Common Core itself, Smarter Balanced will test not only factual recall but problem-solving and critical-thinking skills, too.

The released test items, which were developed by teachers across the country, demonstrate that student assessment is rapidly evolving for the better. While Delaware’s current state assessment the Delaware Comprehensive Assessment System (DCAS) is paving the way, the items included go much further than what our students see today within our schools. They include not only multiple choice items, but constructed response questions that utilize videos, interactive media and other tools that enable us to measure more rigorous and in-depth learning experiences of students. In addition, other student learning styles, such as visual and auditory, are engaged to provide students more opportunities do demonstrate their knowledge.  

Delaware is moving in the right direction by helping to better support teachers implement Common Core. This year, Delaware teachers have begun to incorporate Common Core standards into their teaching. Sample Smarter Balanced testing items are slated to be rolled out in 2013-2014 with full implementation set for the 2014-2015 school year. For more information about the state’s plan and timeline, click here for the Delaware Department of Education’s toolkits.

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Brett Turner



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