PARCC in Massachusetts

One teacher's attempt to connect with other educators across Massachusetts and beyond and provide relevant, up-to-date, and sometime helpful information on next generation assessments, common core state standards implementation, and college and career ready initiatives

PARCC Assessment System and Math, Part 3

In Part 1 on the PARCC assessment system I tried to provide an overview of the design principles and the general architecture of the assessment system, and in Part 2 I attempted to share what I learned specifically about the ELA portion of the assessment.  In this post I will mirror the ELA post by starting with a brief review of the general evidence-centered design principle and transition to what this means for mathematics.  Below is the picture of evidence-centered design construction:

Evidence-Centered Claims Driving Design of Math Assessment

The math assessment has a broad set of claims about what students should know and be able to do that should be supported by the evidence collected through the assessment tasks.  These claims are intended to support the intent of the PARCC assessment system’s larger function of determining if students are on-track or ready for college and careers.  Here are the math claims for the PARCC assessment bulleted out and a screen shot of the slide from which they came:

1) Students solve problems involving the major content for their grade level with connections to practices

2) Students solve problems involving the additional and supporting content for their grade level with connections to practices

3) Students express mathematical reasoning by constructing mathematical arguments and critiques

4) Students solves real world problems engaging particularly in the modeling practice

5) Students demonstrate fluency in areas set forth in the Standards for Content in Grades 3-6

Broad Mathematics Task Types

  • Type I (PBA and EOY): Machine scorable, focusing on major content and/or fluency.
    • Could be practice forward items.*
    • These questions will get at conceptual understanding.
    • The End of Year will be all Type I
  • Type II (PBA): Hand scored (or machine scored if innovative); focused on expressing mathematical reasoning.
  • Type III (PBA): Hand scored (or machine scored if innovative); focused on modeling/application of mathematics
*A practice-forward item is one that is unlikely or impossible to earn full credit on without engaging in the mathematical practices. 

As more concrete, certain, information is made available I will share.  A later post will go through some of the takeaways I have gleaned by looking through the PARCC item development specifications, specifically around innovative tasks.  If you would like to explore it yourself a copy can be found here.


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This entry was posted on July 26, 2012 by in Uncategorized and tagged .

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The opinion expressed within each post is my own and is not a reflection of the Massachusetts' Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, PARCC, or any other body.

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