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A HIGHWAY TO ALIGNED ASSESSMENTS

DESTINATION: MAXIMUM IMPACT

Objectives:
*The standards and assessment components of a quality
CFA.
*How formative progress checks, data analysis, and
instruction intersect.
*How you can construct, in progressive steps, the CFA
“highway of aligned assessments.

SEEING THE ENTIRE HIGHWAY

 “Our conclusions about what students know and can do

are only as good as the evidence we collect, and the
evidence is only as good as its source – the assessments
themselves. If the assessment questions are faulty, then
the inferences are bound to be ____________________.”

DESIGN FUNDAMENTALS
 Explicit standards & related assessments for an individual

unit of study
 Unit of Study - series of specific lessons, learning
experiences, and related assessments (Based on Priority
Standards & related standards)
 Two to six weeks (duration dependent on number & rigor
of targeted standards)

FUNDAMENTAL STANDARDS COMPONENTS
 Priority Standards (grade and CCRS to be emphasized the

most)
 “Unwrapped” Priority Standards concepts, skills, and
identified levels of cognitive rigor (DOK Levels)
 Big Ideas & Essential Questions (Big Ideas need to align to
Learning Progressions for next grade)
 Assessments
 Unit post-assessment
 Unit pre-assessment

WHAT IS ALL THIS ABOUT, AND WHERE ARE WE HEADING?
Priority
Standards
as Unit
Focus

Unit PreAssessment

Unit Post

CFA
Design
Fundamen
tals

“Unwrapped
” Concepts,
Skills,
Identified
Levels of
Thinking
Skill Rigor

Big Ideas
and
Essential
Questions

FOUR-PART ASSESSMENT ALIGNED TO PRIORITY STANDARDS

Selected
Response

Big idea
Response
s to
Essential
Questions

Directly
Aligned
to
Priority
Standar
ds

Extended
Response

Short
Construct
ed
Response

STRENGTHENING THE FOUNDATION: DESIGN FUNDAMENTAL
PLUS
Priority
Standards
as Unit
Focus
“Unwrapped
” Concepts,
Skills,
Identified
Levels of
Thinking
Skill Rigor

Unit PreAssessment

CFA Design
Fundament
als
Big Ideas
and
Essential
Questions

Unit Post

Unit learning
Intentions &
Student
Success
Criteria

FROM PRIORITY STANDARDS TO UNIT LEARNING
INTENTIONS

Selected
Response

Big idea
Response
s to
Essential
Questions

Directly
Aligned to
Unit
Learning
Intentions

Extended
Response

Short
Construct
ed
Response

QUICK PROGRESS CHECKS
 Pre-planned formative assessments that take place during the

unit
 Immediate
 Non-graded assessments
 Intentionally aligned to end-of-unit post-assessment
 Stepping stone to student success on post-CFA
 Purpose: provide in-the-moment feedback for timely
adjustments in instruction so students can adjust learning
strategies
 Intentionally planned to coincide with unit learning progressions

STRENGTHENING THE FOUNDATION: DESIGN FUNDAMENTAL
PLUS
Priority
Standards
as Unit
Focus
“Unwrapped
” Concepts,
Skills,
Identified
Levels of
Thinking
Skill Rigor

Learning
Progressions
& Quick
Progress
Checks

CFA Design
Fundament
als
Unit PostAssessment;
Unit PreAssessment

Big Ideas
and
Essential
Questions
Unit learning
Intentions &
Student
Success
Criteria

NEW COLLABORATIVE DATA ANALYSIS PROCESS VS.
OLD TRADITIONAL INSTRUCTION-ASSESSMENT MODEL

Pretest

Pre-CFA
Results
Meeting :
Analyze
Data: Set
Improveme
nt Goal;
Select
Instructional
Strategies

Teach

Teach

Teach,
Monitor,
Adjust

Teach

Teach

Mid-Unit
Team
Check-In

Teach

Teach,
Monitor,
Adjust

Posttes
t

Assign
Grades

Post-CFA
Results
Meeting:
Analyze
Data; Goal
Met; Plan
Next Steps

TEACH – ASSESS – INTERPRET - ADJUST

Quick
Progre
ss
Check

LP4

Quick
Progre
ss
Check

LP3

LP1

Quick
Progre
ss
Check

LP 2

Learning
Progressions
Quick
Progre
ss
Check

Learning
Intention

“Inserting assessment-driven, inference-based
instructional corrections into the cycle may well prove to
be the “missing link” to improving student learning.” Larry

THE QUARTET OF INSTRUCTION AND ASSESSMENT
PRACTICES

Teach LP 1

Teach LP 2

Teach LP 3

Teach LP 4

• Quick Progress • Quick Progress • Quick Progress • Quick Progress
Check
Check
Check
Check
• Interpret &
• Interpret &
• Interpret &
• Interpret &
Adjust
Adjust
Adjust
Adjust

Team Analyzes
Post CFA Results
Mid-Unit Team
Check-in

Team Plans
Next Steps

TEACHER ACTIONS

 Analyze pre-CFAs
 Interpret student learning strengths
 Areas of need
 Adjust instruction earlier and more decisively
 Set improvement goals for all students
 Select specific instructional strategies

STUDENT USE OF CFA FEEDBACK
 Students self-regulate their learning
 Students graph pre-assessment results
 Students set specific targets for their learning
 Students create a personal SMART goal (Specific-Measurable-Ambitious-

Relevant-Timely) aligned to learning intentions and success criteria for
unit
 Student receives feedback from Quick Progress Checks (The student
asks clarifying questions to understand what changes or adjustments in
learning approach needs to be made to close understanding gaps)
 Student receives new instruction & guidance from teacher
 Student applies information to continue or revise learning strategies

SMART GOAL
(SPECIFIC-MEASURABLE-AMBITIOUS-RELEVANT-TIMELY)

 “My learning goal for this unit on adding and subtracting

fractions with unlike denominators is to achieve a score of
80 percent or higher on the post-CFA. I only got two
problems right on the pre-CFA, so I have a lot of learning
to do in this unit.”

BRIDGES
 Remediation & Reassessment (Reteach/Retest)
 Bridges are strategically planned as buffers between units
of study
 Purpose: Provide teachers & students additional time to
regroup in order to close the student learning gaps
 Proficient students extend knowledge by refining skills in
enrichment learning
Note: the purpose of the Bridge is to help educators
equalize that distribution of time and attention. It is just as
much about meeting the learning needs of high-performing
students as it is about assisting those students who

RELEVANCE
 “When formative assessment practices are integrated into

the minute-to-minute and day-by-day classroom activities
of teachers, increases in student achievement – of the
order of a 70 to 80 percent increase in the speed of
learning – are possible, even when outcomes are
measured with externally mandated standardized tests.”
(Siobhan Leahy and Dylan William)