Diving Deeper into Ohio's Education Reform Efforts

Preparing for the Administration of Next Generation Assessments

Presenters: Kirk Ross, Educational Consultant, ODE; Larry Early, Associate Director of Assessment, ODE.

Summary: Purpose of presentation was to increase awareness of numerous considerations that are part of movement toward a computer-based assessment system; how stakeholders can prepare for change; engage participants in discussion about related topics.

Presenters addressed these questions (in bold).

Why computer-based assessments?

    • They are a better fit for where we are going with instruction. New standards have technology built into them. Instruction will drive the assessments, rather than other way around. Want assessments to be seamless with instruction; with students unaware that they are taking tests.
    • Assessments will be oriented to college- and career-readiness skills. Assessments to be based on real-world experiences. Will ask them to show what they know and can do.

What are technology-enhanced items?

    • They may be of different types, will ask for a response or action, include media, and be interactive. They may be of various complexities, but must have fidelity, and use an automated or human scoring method.
    • Will include various types of items including short answer, multiple choice, longer open-response and performance-based items. Expect to have examples to show students and teachers in advance of their use during pilots.

What are the benefits for Ohio of computer-based assessments?
Should be able to reduce our costs for the statewide assessments, although Ohio will have to do parallel paper/pencil and computer tests since not all districts are up to capacity and some families will object to computer assessments. Internet safety will be a consideration – there will be no access to Internet for anything other than the assessment.

What steps is the state taking toward the goal of a statewide computer-based assessment system?

    • Conducted a needs analysis to create a detailed assessment-design roadmap.
    • Piloting assessments.
    • Looking at options to reduce costs to make technology available to all districts. Also keeping a long-term view on technology needs.
    • Communicating with districts on an ongoing basis. Kirk Ross sends email communications with district technology staff and responds to phone and email questions regularly. Contact him at kirk.ross@education.ohio.gov.

What can districts do to prepare for the new assessments?

    • Anticipate ongoing change – design and implement a plan for ongoing needs analysis, including system, development, capacity building and communication.
    • Increase awareness, perhaps have a school-level team.
    • Change behaviors – be ready to embrace technology in learning process, actively get engaged in implementation process and be willing to make necessary changes.

For More Information: Click here to download the presentation.

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