From the National Center for Special Education Research (NCSER)
Alternative Assessments for Students With Disabilities
SRI International was recently awarded a four-year, $4.4 million contract to conduct a national study of alternate assessments used to permit some students with disabilities to participate in state and local testing programs. Among other things, the study will examine:
- the criteria states use to determine eligibility for alternate assessments and the number and type of children who take them;
- the validity and reliability of alternate assessment instruments and procedures;
- the alignment of alternate assessments and alternate achievement standards with state academic content standards in reading, mathematics, and science;
- the use and effectiveness of alternate assessments in appropriately measuring student progress "specific to individualized instructional need;" and
- alternate assessments based on modified achievement standards and those based on grade-level standards.
SRI will produce profiles for all 50 states and nine "unique states," plus a national summary profile. Study partners: The University of Maryland's Educational Policy Reform Research Institute, the University of Minnesota's National Center on Educational Outcomes, and Policy Studies Associates. For more information, contact David Malouf.
For an overview of other efforts under way to fund the improvement of assessments, assist teachers with instruction, and support research on the assessment of students with disabilities who are held to alternate and modified achievement standards, go to http://www.ed.gov/policy/speced/guid/secletter/051214.html.