Administering Smarter Balanced Interim Assessments

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Administering Smarter BalancedInterim Assessments:A Guide for Administration2020-2021Published August 12, 2020Updated March 12, 2021

TABLE OF CONTENTSSection 1.0: Introduction to the Guide .41.1. Intended Audience.41.2. Purpose of the Guide .41.3. Organization of the Guide .41.4. Training and Practice Tests .51.5. HSAP Help Desk .5Section 2.0: Overview of the Interim Assessments .72.1. Overview of the Smarter Balanced Assessment System .72.2. Key Features of the Interim Assessments.82.2.1. The Interim Comprehensive Assessments .92.2.2. The Interim Assessment Blocks .102.2.3. Focused Interim Assessment Blocks .102.3. Interim Assessment Blueprints .102.4. Standardized vs Non-Standardized Test Administration . 112.4.1. Standardized Administration .122.4.2. Non-standardized Administration.12Section 3.0: Preparing to Administer the Smarter Balanced Interim Assessments . 133.1. Tasks to Complete Prior to Administration .133.2. Scheduling the Interim Assessments .143.2.1. Additional Administration Recommendations .163.3. Estimated Testing Time .163.3.1. The Interim Comprehensive Assessment (ICAs) . 163.3.2. The Interim Assessment Blocks (IABs) and the Focused Interim AssessmentBlocks (FIABs) .17Section 4.0: Administering the Interim Assessments Online. 184.1. Starting a Test .204.2. Testing Over Multiple Session or Days .344.3. Sensitivity Responses.35Section 5.0: Guidelines for Administering the Interim Assessments . 375.1. Criteria for Selecting Standardized Administration . 375.2. Test Security .385.2.1. Responding to Testing Improprieties, Irregularities, and Breaches . 39Section 6.0: Universal Tools, Designated Supports, Accommodations, Accessibility 416.1. What are Universal Tools, Designated Supports, and Accommodations? . 416.1.1. What are Universal Tools? .416.1.2. What are Designated Supports?.416.1.2. What are Accommodations? .42 of Calculators .43Electronic Devices .45Scratch Paper .45Breaks .46Verbal Instructions/Script .46Section 7.0: Viewing Scores and Results .477.1. Centralized Reporting Overview .477.1.1. Group-Level Results.487.1.2. Student-Level Results .487.1.3. Item-Level Results.487.2. Accessing Centralized Reporting .487.3. Understanding Results for the Interim Assessments . 497.3.1. Scale Scores .497.3.2. Error Band .507.4. Reporting Performance for ICAs .507.5. Reporting Performance for IABs and FIABs.507.6. Links to the Connections Playlists .51Section 8.0: Smarter Balanced Tools For Teachers Overview . 528.1. Smarter Balanced Tools for Teachers Overview .528.2. Accessing Tools for Teachers.53Appendix A: Interim Assessments Available in School Year 2020-2021 . 54Appendix B: Additional Resources .62Change Log .64

SECTION 1.0: INTRODUCTION TO THE GUIDE1.1. Intended AudienceThis Interim Assessment Guide for Administration is intended for staff who play a role in theadministration of, and review of results for, the Smarter Balanced interim assessments.1.2. Purpose of the GuideThis document consolidates all the information about interim assessments into one resource.This includes information on the types of interim assessments (Focused Interim AssessmentBlocks (FIAB), Interim Assessment Blocks (IAB) and Interim Comprehensive Assessments(ICA)), guidelines for administering the assessment for both non-standardized and standardizedadministrations, test security, accommodations and accessibility, the Centralized Reportingsystem (formerly known as AIRWays Reporting), and the Smarter Balanced ConnectionsPlaylists available in the Tools for Teachers website. The interim assessments can beadministered flexibly by teachers to best meet their instructional needs (e.g., in a nonstandardized manner).1.3. Organization of the GuideThe guide is organized into the following sections. Overview of the Interim Assessments: an overview of the Smarter Balanced InterimComprehensive Assessments and Interim Assessment Blocks. Tasks to be Completed Prior to Administration: the steps that need to happenbefore administering the interim assessments to students. Administering the Interim Assessments Online: an overview of the testadministration site and the student testing site and how to complete important tasks andfunctions. Interim assessments are administered using the Hawaiʻi test delivery systemvia the TA Live Site with certified test administrators launching test sessions and studentslogging in through the Secure Browser. Guidelines for Administering the Interim Assessments: general test rules andpolicies for the interim assessments. Viewing Scores and Results: an overview of the reports available in CentralizedReporting. Further information is available in the Centralized Reporting User Guidewhich can be accessed in the Reporting folder on the Smarter Balanced Resourcespage at

Smarter Balanced Tools for Teachers Overview: an overview of the resourcesavailable to educators and how to access Smarter Balanced Tools for Teachers. Appendices list the interim assessment available in school year 2020-2021 and providelinks to additional resources.1.4. Training and Practice TestsTraining and Practice Tests allow students the opportunity to become familiar with both thetesting environment and different kinds of test questions. They can be found in the TrainingSites folder on the Smarter Balanced Students and Families, Teachers, or Test Coordinators /Administrators pages at HSAP Help DeskThe Hawaiʻi Statewide Assessment Program portal is the home for all online SmarterBalanced interim assessments administration information.For questions regarding the online testing system or for additional assistance, pleasecontact the Hawaiʻi Statewide Assessment Program Help Desk at 1-866-648-3712 Help Desk will be open Monday–Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. HST (exceptholidays) During these hours, staff will respond to your calls, voice mail messages,and emails as promptly as possible based on the order in which they are received.The Help Desk may be contacted for situations and questions that include the following: testing system is not available; user accounts are not available or users are notable to administer tests; student information is incorrect or missing;loading student data or student settings into TIDE;preparing for online testing—downloading the secure browser, voice packs, etc.; tests showing as unavailable to students when they log in to begin testing; password resets for state, complex area, complex, and school users; andsettings not presenting as intended.When contacting the Help Desk, provide the representative with as much detail aspossible about the issue(s) encountered and the system on which it occurred. Thisshould include the following: type of device being used for the test;any error messages that appeared (code and description);operating system and browser information;5

network configuration information (consult with your Technology Coordinator forthis information);your contact information for follow-up, including email address and phonenumber; andany relevant and authorized student and school information, including statewidestudent identifier (SSID), grade level, content area, and Computer Adaptive Test(CAT) or Performance Task (PT).Policy-related questions may be directed to the Assessment Section.Assessment SectionAssessment and Accountability BranchOffice of Strategy, Innovation, and PerformanceTelephone: 808-307-3636Fax: 808-733-44836

SECTION 2.0: OVERVIEW OF THE INTERIM ASSESSMENTS2.1. Overview of the Smarter Balanced Assessment SystemThe Smarter Balanced assessment system is a valid, fair, and reliable approach to studentassessment that provides meaningful results with actionable data for educators, students, andparents to help students succeed. The system is aligned to the Hawaiʻi Common CoreStandards for English language arts/literacy (ELA) and mathematics to accurately measurestudent progress toward college-and career-readiness. The interim assessments are one of thethree major components—Tools for Teachers, interim assessments, and summativeassessments—all designed with the intention to gauge student progress towards attaining thecontent knowledge and skills including in the Hawaiʻi Common Core Standards as they will bemeasured by the Smarter Balanced summative assessments.Figure 1. Overview of the Smarter Balanced Assessment SystemThe summative assessments are administered by states, to provide aggregate data to schoolsto help inform school and program improvement goals. Summative assessment results are alsoused as an accountability measure, at the end of the year to determine students’ progresstoward college and career readiness in English language arts/literacy (ELA) and mathematics.In contrast, interim assessments are administered throughout the year in support of theformative assessment process.7

All Smarter Balanced test items for the summative and interim assessments are developedusing the ELA and mathematics item and task specifications and the same item writing, review,and field-testing processes. Smarter Balanced assessment items are developed throughcollaboration with K-12 educators and higher education faculty. Items on the ICAs and IABs areselected from the same pool of items as the summative assessment items.Educator involvement in the development of summative, interim and formative resources iscritical. Since 2011, teachers from Hawaiʻi and a number of other states have contributed toeach step of the development, from writing test questions to creating the resources in theSmarter Balanced Tools for Teachers website.2.2. Key Features of the Interim AssessmentsThe Smarter Balanced interim assessments allow teachers to check student progressthroughout the year, so educators can use the results to inform instruction and help studentsmeet the challenge of college- and career-ready standards. Below are some of the key featuresof the Interim Assessments: The optional and flexible tests can be used formatively (e.g., classroom discussion,small groups of students working on interim assessment items). Assessments are available in ELA and mathematics in grades 3–8 and high school. Atthe high school level, the assessments are consistent with the grade 11 summativedesign but may also be administered in grades 9, 10, and 12. Teachers may administer individual assessments at any grade level. Out of grade-levelinterim administration for students in grades 3 -8 is also permitted, (e.g., administrationof a grade 4 interim to students in grade 3, or a grade 3 interim to students in grade 4),however, school personnel need to indicate that eligibility in TIDE. Students have up to five opportunities to take the ICA and each IAB and each FIABthroughout the school year. Since the IABs and FIABs are more granular than the ICAs, educators can use IABs andFIABs during the school year more consistently with the sequence of their instruction.There are three types of Smarter Balanced interim assessments: The Interim ComprehensiveAssessments (ICAs), the Interim Assessment Blocks (IABs), and the Focused InterimAssessment Blocks (FIABs). The ICAs assess the same range of standards as the summativeassessments and provide scores on the same scale. The IABs focus on smaller sets of HawaiʻiCommon Core Standards and provide more detailed target information within a claim forinstructional purposes. The FIABs assess no more than three targets in order to provideeducators with an even more granular level of understanding of student learning. ICAs, IABs,and FIABs draw from a shared bank of items, including performance tasks, meaning there may8

be overlapping items in the IABs, FIABs and ICAs in each content area. The performance taskis the same whether given as an IAB or as part of the ICA.The interim assessments are designed to be administered as computer-based assessmentsand are not available in paper-pencil format. All interim assessments provide access to thesame universal tools, designated supports and accommodations available on the summativeassessment based on the needs of individual students if they have been set in TIDE. It isrecommended that students using these tools, supports, and accommodations be administeredthe training and/or practice tests to familiarize themselves with the use of these tools prior tosummative testing. The ICAs, IABs, and FIABs are fixed-form tests, which means that allstudents in the class will be presented with the same items and a student who takes an interimassessment more than once will see the same items each time. Because each studentresponds to the same test items, teachers may more easily interpret their students’ performanceon a common set of items.2.2.1. The Interim Comprehensive AssessmentsThe Interim Comprehensive Assessments (ICAs) are simulations of the full-length summativeassessments administered in Hawaii prior to Spring 2021 and address the same range ofstandards as the current summative assessments. The CAT will include the same item typesand formats and the ELA/Literacy ICA includes a Performance Task. Therefore, the ICAs maybe helpful for purposes such as determining the knowledge and skills of students who are newto the school or the state and providing interim information after a significant period ofinstruction.The ICAs continue to follow the full-length summative CAT blueprint. They do not use the Spring2021 Smarter Summative Assessments shortened CAT blueprint. The ICA blueprints can befound in the General Information Folder on the Smarter Balanced Resources page ICA includes: For mathematics, a CAT with 30 to 33 items depending on the grade level; and For ELA/Literacy, a CAT with 38 to 43 items depending on the grade level, and aPerformance Task (PT) that ranges from 2-3 items depending on the content area andgrade level.Once the entire ICA (e.g., for ELA both CAT and the PT) is completed student results will beavailable in the Centralized Reporting System within 24 hours. All student responses on theICAs, IABs, and FIABs will be machine-scored for reporting in Centralized Reporting. Handscoring of full writes by school staff members is no longer required for a score to be generatedin Centralized Reporting. However, hand scoring is available in Centralized Reporting for Test9

Administrators, Teachers, or school specified individuals so that machine-scored responses canbe reviewed and edited as deemed appropriate.The ICA reporting provides the following types of scores: Overall scale score. Claim score reporting is based on three classifications. These classifications are “BelowStandard,” “At/Near Standard,” and “Above Standard.”2.2.2. The Interim Assessment BlocksThe Interim Assessment Blocks (IABs) and the Focused Interim Assessment Blocks (FIABs) areshort, focused item-sets that include 6–18 items. Throughout the school year, teachers can usethese sets of related concepts in ELA and mathematics to check students’ understanding. Sincethe IABs and FIABs are more granular than the ICAs, teachers can administer theseassessments throughout the school according to the sequence of their curricula. The IABsassess as many as 4 to 8 targets and the FIABs assess only 1 to 3 targets. Each IAB and FIABhave a corresponding Connections Playlist available in Tools for Teachers, which providesaligned resources teachers can use for instructional next steps to support student learning. TheIABs and FIABs and associated instructional resources will provide educators with a deeperunderstanding of student knowledge and skills and next steps for instruction.2.2.3. Focused Interim Assessment BlocksFocused IABs assess no more than 3 assessment targets and their associated instructionalresources provide educators with a deeper understanding of student knowledge and skills andnext steps for instruction.2.3. Interim Assessment BlueprintsThe interim assessment blueprints provide additional information about the content measuredby each assessment, including which claim(s), assessment target(s), and depth of knowledgelevel(s) are addressed by the items, as well as the number of items by target or target group.They can be used to plan how to integrate the IABs and FIABs effectively within classroominstruction or to better understand results that are reported. A fifth-grade teacher, for example,may wish to collect more information regarding her students’ knowledge about geometry. Theteacher could use the Grade 5 Geometry blueprint to see that this IAB is composed of 13machined-scored items across the four claims: concepts and procedures, problem solving,communicating reasoning, and modeling and data analysis.10

The 2020-2021 interim assessment blueprints can be found in the General Information folder onthe Smarter Balanced Resources page at ELA IAB BlueprintsELA FIAB BlueprintsMathematics IAB BlueprintsMathematics FIAB Blueprints2.4. Standardized vs Non-Standardized Test AdministrationThere is one ICA per grade and content area. There are over 100 IABs across grades andcontent areas. The Interim Assessments Overview document lists the available ICAs, IABs, andFIABs. This document is updated annually and posted on the Smarter Assessments page of theSmarter Balanced website ( within the InterimAssessment: The Optional Periodic Test section.The following factors should be considered when administering the interim assessments. Multiple administrations: Schools have the flexibility to re-administer interimassessments up to five times during the school year. These decisions should be madeas part of larger assessment context that includes the purpose of the interimassessment, how the interim assessment will be scored, and how the data from theinterim assessment will be used to improve teaching and learning. Fixed forms: There is only one form of each interim assessment. All interims are fixedform tests so students who take an interim assessment multiple times will see the samequestions in the same order. In addition, within a grade there are overlapping items inthe IABs, FIABs, and ICAs in each content area and the performance task is the samewhether given as an IAB or as part of the ICA. Exposure to and familiarity with testquestions may affect student performance and the accuracy of interim results as anindicator of student’s knowledge and skills. Grade levels: The ICAs, IABs, and FIABs are comprised of items aligned to the HawaiʻiCommon Core Standards in grades 3–8 and high school. However, administering theinterim assessments is not constrained by grade level. Students may take an off-gradelevel interim assessment to help inform educators on skills and knowledge a student hasfrom previous grades, or from an advanced-level course. Teachers of students in grades3-8 will need to off-grade eligibility in TIDE. Untimed: ICAs, IABs, and FIABs are untimed tests. The time it might take students tocomplete an ICA under a standardized administration is provided in this document onlyas a guide. Many IABs and FIABs administered under a standardized administration canbe completed in about one class period but some may take more than one period.11

2.4.1. Standardized AdministrationStandardized administration means that a student completes the interim assessmentindividually, following the procedure for administration used for the summative assessments.Results from a standardized administration can be interpreted in a consistent manner and usedas a gauge of student learning that is comparable across students. In this approach, the interimassessment is used as an assessment of learning after a period of instruction and results reflectan individual student’s mastery of the concepts assessed.Information about the reliability and meaning of scores for these fixed form assessments appliesonly to the first time a test is administered under standardized conditions, including the use ofstandardized hand-scoring protocols. Subsequent administrations, or results from collaboratingwith a class or teacher, alter the interpretation of results. In addition, some items on the IABs,FIABs, and ICAs are shared and no longer have the same parameters once exposed to thestudent. The conditions of administration should be considered when interpreting results.2.4.2. Non-standardized AdministrationNon-standardized administration refers to any administration that is not consistent with theadministration requirements of the summative assessment. Some examples of nonstandardized administration might include (but are not limited to): Administering tests while students answer cooperatively in pairs, in small groups, or as awhole class. Teachers may elect to include some discussion time between test items. Providing access to classroom resources that may support the students’ understandingof the assessed content.Results from a non-standardized administration of the interim assessments are moreappropriately used as assessment for learning (formative assessment process) rather than theassessment of learning. Because non-standardized administrations do not necessarily describethe performance of individual students in a comparable manner, caution must be used whenmaking instructional decisions based on data from a non-standardized administration.12

SECTION 3.0: PREPARING TO ADMINISTER THE SMARTERBALANCED INTERIM ASSESSMENTSThe Smarter Balanced interim assessments, although not secure tests, can be administered asproctored tests using the same procedures that are used for the Smarter Balanced summativeassessments.Table 1: Personnel Who May Serve as Test AdministratorsPersonnelRequirementsGeneral education teacher (full or part time)Must have a Hawai‘i teacher license or credentialSpecial education teacher, including those hired(full or part time) by a private recruiting agencyMust have a teacher license or credential forHawai‘i or another stateSchool counselorMust have a master’s degree in counselingInstructorsMust be teaching a class independently in acontent area where there is a shortage of Hawai‘ilicensed or credentialed teachersLong-term substitute teachersNot required to have a Hawai‘i teacher license orcredential if they are teaching a classindependentlyIdentified public charter school employeesQualified teaching staff membersTest CoordinatorMust meet any one of the above requirements3.1. Tasks to Complete Prior to AdministrationIn order to have a successful testing experience the following tasks should be completed prior toscheduling the assessments: TCs and TAs should verify that students are provided an opportunity to complete theTraining Test and Practice Test for a content area prior to testing. It is highlyrecommended that ALL students be provided the opportunity to take the Training Testand Practice Test for each content area prior to testing. This allows students theopportunity to become familiar with all of the item types, the universal tools, buttons, andany allowable designated supports and/or accommodations. Ensure that all TAs complete the online TA Certification Course. Each student must be correctly assigned to his or her school and grade in TIDE.Incorrect student information must be updated in the Department’s student informationsystem (Infinite Campus) before the student can be tested. (Students can be13

administered off-grade interim assessments if set in TIDE.) All high school students arepre-set in TIDE as eligible to take the 11th grade interim assessments. ICAs for grades 9and 10 have been added. However, for ELA all of the items are the same as the grade11 ICA. For math, the grades 9 and 10 ICAs are the same fixed form and both contain26 of the 32 items found on the grade 11 ICA. The grade 9 and 10 ICAs will be scoredbased upon grade level cut scores set by Smarter Balanced. In addition to the correct school and grade, TCs, TAs, and Teachers should verify that allstudents have accurate test settings in TIDE, including designated supports andaccommodations (embedded and non-embedded) based on individual student needs foreach content area prior to testing. Work with technology personnel to ensure timely computer setup including: conductingnetwork diagnostics, and downloading the latest version of the secure browser availableat:, Communicate with the TAs to identify the number of headsets needed for each testinglocation and ensure that the needed number is available. Headsets are required for theELA Listening portion of the assessment, for students who require text-to-speech, or forstudents requiring audio glossaries.3.2. Scheduling the Interim AssessmentsThe scheduling rules and recommendations for ELA/literacy and mathematics appear in thefollowing tables for scheduling purposes, as the interim assessments are not timed. Note thatthe duration, timing, break/pause rules, and session recommendations vary for each contentarea.The Smarter Balanced Interim Assessments will be available for in-person or remoteadministration starting on August 18, 2020. Remote administration of the interimassessments, including the Smarter Balanced Interim Assessment Blocks (IABs), FocusedInterim Assessment Blocks (FIABS), and the Interim Comprehensive Assessments (ICAs),will be made available without students needing to use the secure browser. CambiumAssessment (CAI) and the Hawai'i Department of Education (HIDOE) Assessment Sectionhave developed the Guide to Remotely Administering Interim Assessments, to providespecific guidance on administering interim assessments remotely. This document isavailable on Interim Assessments Resources page on the AlohaHSAP portal.14

Table 2: Assessment Sequence - ELAEnglish Language Arts/LiteracyCAT ItemsNumberandDuration ofSessionsBreakswithinSessionsPerformance Task (PT)Recommendations:The PT is presented in two segments. No more than three sessions.Additional sessions may benecessary in rare or extremecases. Session durations range from40–60 minutes f

Aug 12, 2020 · All Smarter Balanced test items for the summative and interim assessments are developed using the ELA and mathematics item and task specifications and the same item writing, review, and field-testing processes. Smarter Balanced assessment items are developed through collaboration with K-12 educators and higher education faculty.

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