Linking Smarter Balanced Assessments to MAP Interim Assessments

Linking Smarter Balanced Assessments to MAP Interim AssessmentsConcordance tables have been used for decades to relate scores on different tests measuring similar but distinct constructs. These tables, typically derived from statistical linking procedures, provide a direct link between scores on different tests and serve various purposes. Aside from describing how a score on one test relates to performance on another test, they can also be used to identify benchmark scores on one test corresponding to performance categories on another test, or to maintain continuity of scores on a test after a redesign or change. Concordance tables provide a useful tool for educators, parents, administrators, researchers, and policy makers to evaluate and formulate academic standing and growth.

We are committed to providing partners with useful tools to help make inferences from the Measures of Academic Progress® (MAP®) scores. One important tool is the concordance table between MAP and state summative assessments. Recently, we completed a concordance study to connect the scales of Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) English Language Arts (ELA) and Mathematics tests with those of the MAP Reading and MAP for Mathematics assessments.

Smarter Balanced Assessments are summative assessments administered in the form of computerized adaptive tests (CATs) and developed according to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in ELA and mathematics for grades 3-8 and 11. Smarter Balanced uses a vertical scale that assumes student proficiency is increased across different grade levels and reports scaled scores with a range between 2000 and 3000. For each grade and subject, there are three cut scores that classify student performance into four levels. The Level 3 cut score demarks the minimum level of performance considered to be “Proficient” for accountability purposes (Smart Balanced Technical Report, 2015). Level 1 (Not Met) indicates students have not met the achievement standards for that grade; Level 2 (Nearly Met) indicates students have nearly met the achievement standards; Level 3 (Met) indicates students have met the achievement standards; and Level 4 (Exceeded) indicates students have exceeded the achievement standards for that grade.

MAP tests are vertically scaled interim assessments that are also administered in the form of CAT. MAP tests are constructed to measure student achievements from grades K to 12 in reading, mathematics, language usage, and science and aligned to the CCSS. MAP scores are reported with Rasch Unit (RIT) scale with a range from 100 to 350. Each subject has its own RIT scale.

We created a study that produced a set of cut scores on MAP Reading and MAP for Mathematics assessments for Grades 3 to 8 that correspond to each Smarter Balanced performance level. By using matched score data from a sample of students from three Smarter Balanced states (87 schools in California, 44 in Washington, and seven in Maine), the study demonstrates that MAP scores can accurately predict whether a student could be proficient or above on the basis of his/her MAP scores. This study also used the 2015 NWEA norms study results to project a student’s probability to meet proficiency based on that student’s prior MAP scores in fall and winter. These results can help educators to predict student performance in Smarter Balanced tests as early as possible and to identify those students who are at risk of failing to meet required standards so that they can receive necessary resources and assistance to meet their goals.

Download the linking data table (one sheet) or the complete study for details. And stay tuned, as we’re collecting data to conduct a Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) linking study in the future; we’ll share that when it’s available.