SBAC CDE News
- Update on Sample Items and Performance Tasks Released
The SBAC CDE weekly update is an email sent each week to inform California educators and parents of new developments and upcoming events. Please feel free to share information in the update with those who are interested in the SBAC CDE’s work.
- Update on Sample Items and Performance Tasks Released — The Smarter Balanced sample items and performance tasks were released on Tuesday, October 9. At the end of the second week, there were more than 84,000 visitors to the website. Public interest continues to be high, as indicated by numerous articles, blog posts, and a high volume of social-media activity. The sample assessment items and performance tasks
can be viewed on the Smarter Balanced website. Help-desk support will be provided through November 2, between the hours of 7:00 a.m. eastern time and 8:00 p.m. eastern time, Monday through Friday.
SBAC Question/Answer of the Week
Q: Will the Smarter Balanced content specifications be updated?
A: Earlier this year, Smarter Balanced Governing States approved content claims in English language arts/literacy and mathematics. The claims are the central, organizing themes of the content specifications, and can be found in those documents. The purpose of the content specifications was to analyze the Common Core State Standards through an assessment lens, to make declarations about what the Smarter Balanced assessments will say about student achievement, and to describe the kinds of evidence we will look for as manifestations of that achievement.
The Smarter Balanced item/task specifications — which define the characteristics of items and tasks that will appear on the Smarter Balanced assessments — were based on the content specifications. Our service providers are using the item/task specifications to write items and tasks for the Pilot Test that will occur this spring. We have encouraged item writers to make note of ways to strengthen and clarify the item/task specifications, and they can be viewed as a somewhat dynamic set of documents that we will continue to improve.
However, the content specifications, being the basis for the item/task specifications, will remain in their current form through the development of the 2014-15 assessment. Once we complete our first or second year of implementation, it may be appropriate to revisit the content specifications. At that time, we will have gathered substantial information on student performance, and we should know much more about how items and tasks work in an online environment, as well as what we can expect from different scoring strategies. This new information will certainly inform the statements of the kinds of evidence we seek in our assessments.
Overviews of the current content claims are available on the Consortium’s website:
SBAC CDE Resources
- Join the SBAC CDE electronic mailing list by sending a blank e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- To receive Common Core State Standards CDE Updates via e-mail notification, subscribe to the from CDE listserv by sending a blank message to email@example.com.
- SBAC CDE Web site — The Smarter Balanced CDE Web site includes access to archived SBAC CDE Updates, resources, and presentations.
- SBAC External Web site — The Smarter Balanced external Web site showcases the SBAC work and provides frequent updates on activities, milestones, and events.
- Smarter News, the SBAC's monthly eNewsletter — Smarter Balanced provides monthly updates on the development of the Smarter Balanced assessment system and activities in member states.
- SBAC is on Twitter — Follow @SmarterBalanced to get resources and links to the latest SBAC news.
- New Resources and Webinars on Standards and Assessments—Student Achievement Partners released ready-to-use professional development modules to assist educators in the implementation of the Common Core State Standards. These modules contain resources for educators, including research, discussion topics, activities, web and video tools, and more.
- California Districts Selected for SBAC Small Scale Trials — California districts that were randomly selected for SBAC Small Scale Trial are posted on the CDE Web site.