Alabama Department of Education Approves Use of NWEA MAP Suite for Early Learners

Contract adds MAP Suite to Alabama’s assessment system to identify students at risk for math and reading difficulties, including dyslexia.

Portland, Ore. – April 2, 2020 – NWEA, the not-for-profit provider of assessment solutions, announced today that the State of Alabama Department of Education (SOADOE) has formally approved public schools to use MAP® Suite™ for Early Learners by teachers to monitor reading and math progress in grades K – 3. MAP® Suite™ includes NWEA’s flagship program – MAP® Growth™ for reading and mathematics – and it’s new, innovative formative and diagnostic assessment called MAP® Reading Fluency™, which can be used as a universal screener for reading difficulties like dyslexia. In addition to the overall approval by SOADOE, NWEA’s MAP® Suite™ for Early Learners was one of three recommended reading solutions endorsed by the Alabama Literacy Task Force.

The reading assessment portion of the approval is part of a bigger initiative in Alabama as defined under the Alabama Literacy Act, which passed in 2019. National research shows that students who are not proficient in reading at the third grade are four times less likely to graduate from high school. Early detection and intervention are key. MAP® Suite™ for Early Learners was considered on several factors, including the alignment to early literacy requirements and the ability to predict success on the Alabama Comprehensive Assessment Program (ACAP).

“We welcome the opportunity to work with Alabama educators and provide tools to help them evaluate the math and literacy progress of their students,” said Chris Minnich, CEO of NWEA. “Focusing in on those first few years of education is key and having powerful, actionable data in the hands of exceptional educators will make all the difference for Alabama students.”

About MAP Suite for Early Learners

MAP® Suite™ for Early Learners is an integrated system of assessments specifically for grades K – 3. It provides a comprehensive picture of a student’s strengths and areas of needs. The assessment system includes MAP® Growth™, which measures what students know and are ready to learn next in both English language arts and mathematics. The computer-adaptive tests support identifying students who may need a greater focus or instructional interventions. Through comprehensive reports, educators along with the student and his/her family can determine learning targets and goals, and track progress.

The suite also includes MAP® Reading Fluency™, an assessment solution that efficiently measures oral reading fluency, literal comprehension and foundational skills for both English and Spanish speakers. It can assess an entire class in just 20 minutes freeing up valuable instructional time. Because of automatic scoring, educators have results right away that helps them understand what’s needed to advance each student’s reading skills. The innovative assessment tool is powered by LanguaMetrics™ and includes EduSpeak® speech recognition software under license from SRI International®.

About NWEA

NWEA® is a mission-driven, not-for-profit organization that supports students and educators worldwide by creating assessment solutions that precisely measure growth and proficiency—and provide insights to help tailor instruction. Educators in more than 10,000 schools, districts, and education agencies in 146 countries rely on our flagship interim assessment, MAP® Growth™; our progress monitoring and skills mastery tool, MAP® Skills™; our reading fluency and comprehension assessment, MAP® Reading Fluency™ ; our personalized learning tool powered by Khan Academy, MAP® Accelerator™; and our new assessment solution that combines growth and proficiency measurement. Visit to find out how NWEA can partner with you to help all kids learn.

Contact: Simona Beattie, Sr. Manager, Public Relations, or 971.361.9526.