Getting data into the hands of teachers and school leaders to inform instructional decisions is what gives assessment its power. Timeliness is key, as is structuring opportunities for application of the data. Using actionable assessment data can help all stakeholders – teachers, administrators, and students – advance learning.
MAP® Growth™ interim assessments give students, parents, and educators more than just a score—these assessments deliver data that can actually be used in real time to make a difference in education. That’s why it’s so crucial that assessments provide actionable and timely data. Data from MAP Growth tests helps educators differentiate instruction based on student readiness, set academic goals with students, and evaluate programs, including professional learning programs. In a previous blog, I highlighted these three ways that assessment data can be put to use in the classroom. Now, here are three examples of how this can be done.
Differentiate by Student Readiness
Ms. Ramirez is teaching a 4th grade lesson on the topic of perimeter. Using MAP Growth data in the Class View, she determines three manageable flexible groups, the students associated with each group, and what learning statements are pertinent for each group
The learning statements support teachers, like Ms. Ramirez, in scaffolding instructional activities, effectively accessing each student’s zone of proximal development (ZPD). Using content from the school’s curriculum, along with MAP Growth resources such as MAP to Khan Academy, teachers can build responsive lesson plans in alignment with learning statements. Pairing MAP Growth data with formative assessment practices, teachers can adjust instruction in the moment based on student feedback
Set Academic Goals
Mr. Waller reviews all of his 3rd grade class’ growth projections for math. He notices Louis has a projected growth RIT score of 183, and based on his state’s cut score ranges, Louis needs a score of 195 to meet proficiency. In a goal-setting conference, Mr. Waller and Louis dig deeper into the data using the Student Goal Setting Worksheet and uncover goal areas of strength and opportunity. Agreeing on a mid-year RIT goal of 190 and an end-of-year RIT goal of 195, they choose a few learning statements from the Learning Continuum to develop into specific student goals. Throughout the year, they track progress toward the goals.
Going beyond the individual student level, teachers and school leaders can identify strengths and areas for improvement in MAP Growth goal performance areas for classrooms, schools, or entire districts. Creating a data-centric school culture, engaging students and parents in the goal-setting process, and celebrating student progress will help instill a culture of goal setting that has a lasting impact
Evaluate Programs and Target Professional Learning
The Shaw School District implemented a new 4th grade reading program that emphasizes the College and Career Readiness shifts in reading, including more focus on informational texts and eliciting evidence from texts. Analyzing MAP Growth data from fall to spring revealed that the majority of individual students made significant gains, even though most of the students stayed within their achievement level (i.e. needs improvement, proficient, etc.). Instead of abandoning the reading program, the district decided to continue its use for 4th grade and extend it to the incoming 5th graders in order to chart its effects on longitudinal growth. Disaggregating the data presented specific goal areas that experienced lower rates of growth than other areas. The district targeted teacher professional learning to address these areas in which students were exhibiting insufficient growth.
Using student growth data to inform instruction can be a valuable and efficient tool for driving students’ academic gains. When you make data actionable, you make assessment matter. To fully benefit from assessment, students and teachers need to use the data to invoke meaningful change. This keeps the focus where it should be—on student learning.