Publications

  • 2017 Publications

    • Forum on Text Readers for Everyone on All Tests: Getting a Handle on What This Means
      Formats:

      A report on a forum held on June 27, 2017 in Austin, TX that brought together staff representing state departments of education, school districts, testing and testing-related companies, and other educational organizations Texas to discuss the availability of text readers for everyone on all tests, the differences in terminology for text readers, ways to develop common language around text readers, and challenges associated with text readers. The forum was a pre-session to the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) National Conference on Student Assessment (NCSA), and was a collaboration of the Assessing Special Education Students (ASES) State Collaborative on Assessment and Student Standards (SCASS), the English Learner (EL) SCASS, and the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO).

      Published: August 2017
    • NCEO Reports: 2014-15 Publicly Reported Assessment Results for Students with Disabilities and ELs with Disabilities (#405)
      Formats:

      This is the eighteenth report by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) that describes how states publicly report online assessment data for students with disabilities in K-12 schools in the United States. This report presents information on publicly reported participation and performance data for students with disabilities for the 50 regular states and the 11 unique states (American Samoa, Bureau of Indian Education, Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands, U.S. Department of Defense Education Activities, District of Columbia, Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, Palau, Puerto Rico, Republic of the Marshall Islands, and U.S. Virgin Islands). Information on public reporting for English Learners (ELs) with disabilities is also included in this report.

      Published: May 2017
    • NCEO Newsletter: June 2017 issue
      Formats:

      The June issue of NCEO's e-newsletter highlights recent webinars, products, and upcoming activities. NCEO held a couple webinar conferences recently. One focused on the 1% cap on participation in the alternate assessment. The other, which was jointly hosted with the National Technical Assistance Center on Transition (NTACT), focused on the state-defined alternate diploma. Also highlighted are a new NCEO Data Analytics, an interactive report that provides multiple ways of examining participation and performance data for students with disabilities, and a resource, Formative Assessment for Students with Disabilities. Finally, you will find an article on the forum that will precede the National Conference on Student Assessment (NCSA), titled Text Readers for Everyone on All Tests - Getting a Handle on What This Means. It includes information on how to register for this event. Also, we provide a summary of all the sessions in which NCEO is participating during NCSA.

      Published: June 2017
    • NCEO Brief: Strategies for Meeting the 1% State-level Cap on Participation in the Alternate Assessment (#12)
      Formats:

      The purpose of this Brief is to assist states in identifying strategies to use to meet the state 1% cap on participation in the alternate assessment.

      Published: April 2017
    • NCEO Data Analytics: State Assessment Participation and Performance of Students with IEPs 2013-2014 (#5)
      Formats:

      This interactive report presents data on the participation and performance of students receiving special education services in statewide assessments used for Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) accountability. Using federally submitted data from the 2013-14 school year, we present information on participation and performance in reading and mathematics statewide assessments. This interactive brief is based on "2013-2014 APR Snapshot #10: State Assessment Participation and Performance of Students Receiving Special Education Services."

      Published: February 2017
    • Informe sobre el desarrollo de un lenguaje común de la accesibilidad para los estados y proveedores de evaluaciones
      Formats:

      Spanish translation of the report, "White Paper on Common Accessibility Language for States and Assessment Vendors." This White Paper by DIAMOND project staff addresses the issue that different test platforms use different terminology for the accessibility features and accommodations that they offer to students, which can make it difficult for students, parents, and educators to understand the available options and select the appropriate supports.

      Published: February 2017
    • NCEO Newsletter: February 2017 issue
      Formats:

      In this issue, new NCEO activities and products are highlighted. NCEO is excited to be collaborating with the University of Texas in the new National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes (see New Deaf Center Grant). Other NCEO collaborations are reflected in its work with ACHIEVE on diplomas for students with disabilities, and in its work on the state defined alternate diploma with the National Technical Assistance Center on Transition (NTACT). A new report by NCEO provides baseline information on how states are addressing the exit of English learners (ELs) with disabilities from EL services (see How States Make Exit Decisions...). Finally, in this issue we provide some updates on NCEO's DIAMOND project activities.

      Published: February 2017
    • NCEO Reports: Providing English Language Development Services to English Learners with Disabilities: Approaches to Making Exit Decisions (NCEO Report 404)
      Formats:

      The purpose of this report is to provide a baseline report, prior to the passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act, on factors that affect decisions to exit English learners (ELs) with disabilities from English language development services, including the relationship of these decisions to students' Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). Although many critical educational decisions are made for these students, the determination that an EL with disabilities should be reclassified and exited from services is one of the more critical decisions made for individual students.

      Published: January 2017
  • 2016 Publications

    • Variables Used by States in the Calculation of Annual Measureable Achievement Objectives (AMAOs) for Title III Reporting
      Formats:

      The purpose of this report is to present information on the approaches used by states to calculate each of three annual measurable achievement objectives (AMAOs) about the language acquisition and academic achievement of English learners (ELs). Although states report their AMAO calculations to the federal government, there is no mechanism of comparison across states. This report provides a snapshot of the inputs states used for calculating AMAOs for the 2014-15 school year.

      Published: December 2016
    • Considerations for Developing State-Defined Alternate Diplomas for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities
      Formats:

      This Brief describes the criteria that must be met for a State-defined alternate diploma to meet federal requirements for inclusion in the Title I Adjusted Cohort Graduation Rate (ACGR). It includes considerations for states contemplating the development of a State-defined alternate diploma, and recommends steps for those deciding to adopt a State-defined alternate diploma.

      Published: November 2016
    • Diplomas that Matter: Ensuring Equity of Opportunity for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      To try to understand the diploma options available for students with disabilities, Achieve and the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) partnered to analyze the diplomas available in each state for the graduating class of 2015. Achieve and NCEO also compared the course and assessment requirements for earning a regular diploma in each state for students with disabilities and their peers without disabilities.

      Published: November 2016
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2013-2014 APR Snapshot #12: AA-AAS Participation and Performance (#12)
      Formats:

      This report provides information on the number of students participating in the Alternate Assessment based on Alternate Achievement Standards (AA-AAS) and the performance of those students, using federally submitted data from the 2013-2014 school year.

      Published: October 2016
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2013-2014 APR Snapshot #11: Assessment Accommodations Use by Students Receiving Special Education Services (#11)
      Formats:

      This report provides information on the number of students with disabilities using accommodations and the performance of these students on the general statewide assessment used for Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) accountability. Using federally submitted data from the 2013-2014 school year, we present information on accommodations for reading and mathematics statewide assessments administered to grade 8 students (and grade 4 to show a comparison to grade 8 data).

      Published: September 2016
    • NCEO Newsletter: October 2016 issue
      Formats:

      This issue highlights the news of NCEO's continued funding. It also summarizes several new reports. These include a report on the pre-session to the National Conference on Student Assessment, a forum on Common Language for States and Assessment Vendors. Consistent with the need for common language is the Accessibility Manual developed through the Council of Chief State School Officers. Information on the contents and tools in this new manual is provided here, along with links to the manual that is available to all states to adapt as desired. Another report highlighted here is the recent NCEO report that examines high school assessment accommodation policies of ACT, SAT, PARCC, and Smarter Balanced; this report raises issues of differences in policies and procedures that are likely to affect many students with disabilities. Finally, this issue highlights recent snapshot reports of assessment and accommodations data submitted by states' special education divisions to the U.S. Department of Education. These snapshots highlight assessment participation, use of accommodations, and performance on assessments.

      Published: October 2016
    • CCSSO Accessibility Manual: How To Select, Administer, And Evaluate Use Of Accessibility Supports For Instruction And Assessment Of All Students
      Formats:

      The "Council of Chief State School Officers' (CCSSO's) Accessibility Manual: How to Select, Administer, and Evaluate Use of Accessibility Supports for Instruction and Assessment of All Students" establishes guidelines for states to use for the selection, administration, and evaluation of accessibility supports for instruction and assessment of all students, including students with disabilities, English learners (ELs), ELs with disabilities, and students without an identified disability or EL status. Accessibility supports discussed herein include both embedded (digitally-provided) and non-embedded (non-digitally or locally provided) universal features that are available to all students as they access instructional or assessment content, designated features that are available for those students for whom the need has been identified by an informed educator or team of educators, and accommodations that are generally available for students for whom there is documentation on an Individualized Education Program (IEP) or 504 accommodation plan. Approaches to these supports may vary depending on state or assessment consortium contexts as well as nature of assessments - be they content assessments, English language proficiency (ELP) assessments, or alternate assessments.

      Published: August 2016
    • Forum on Common Language for States and Assessment Vendors
      Formats:

      A report on a forum held on June 20, 2016 in Philadelphia that brought together states, assessment vendors, and other educational stakeholders to address the need for developing a common language around accessibility and accommodations for all students, including: (1) General education students, (2) English learners (ELs), and (3) Students with IEPs or 504 plans. The forum was a pre-session to the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) National Conference on Student Assessment (NCSA).

      Published: August 2016
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2013-2014 APR Snapshot #10: State Assessment Participation and Performance of Students Receiving Special Education Services (#10)
      Formats:

      This report provides a snapshot of the participation and performance of student receiving special education services in statewide assessments used for Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) accountability. Using federally submitted data from the 2013-14 school year, we present information on participation and performance in reading and mathematics statewide assessments administered to grade 8 students.

      Published: August 2016
    • NCEO Reports: 2015-16 High School Assessment Accommodations Policies: An Analysis of ACT, SAT, PARCC, and Smarter Balanced (#403)
      Formats:

      This report provides a snapshot of how accommodations were included in policies across ACT, SAT, Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC), and Smarter Balanced during the 2015-16 school year. As required by federal and state legislation, all students, including students with disabilities and English learners (ELs), participate in state assessments used for accountability. Some states use assessments developed by consortia of states. States also are required to ensure that graduating students are college- and career-ready (CCR). Some states use state-administrations of the ACT or SAT as their measure of CCR. Many students with disabilities and ELs use accessibility features and accommodations to access each of these assessments. This report also analyzes differences in the accessibility framework, decision-making process, and terminology across the four assessments.

      Published: July 2016
    • NCEO Reports: A Summary of the Research on the Effects of Test Accommodations: 2013-2014 (#402)
      Formats:

      This report provides an update on the state of the research on testing accommodations as well as to identify promising future areas of research. Previous reports by NCEO have covered research published since 1999. We summarize the research to review current research trends and enhance understanding of the implications of accommodations use in the development of future policy directions, implementation of current and new accommodations, and valid and reliable interpretations when accommodations are used in testing situations. Key issues under investigation include how accommodations affect test scores, how educators and students perceive accommodations, and how accommodations are selected and implemented.

      Published: May 2016
    • White Paper on Common Accessibility Language for States and Assessment Vendors
      Formats:

      This White Paper by DIAMOND project staff addresses the issue that different test platforms use different terminology for the accessibility features and accommodations that they offer to students, which can make it difficult for students, parents, and educators to understand the available options and select the appropriate supports.

      Published: June 2016
    • NCEO Reports: Principios y Características de Sistemas Inclusivos de Evaluación en un Escenario de Evaluación Cambiante (#400 Spanish)
      Formats:

      This document is a Spanish translation of the fourth in a series of Principles documents produced by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO). NCEO revisited and revised its 2008 Principles for inclusive assessment systems to respond to the many changes in the current educational assessment context. The revised Principles reflect a broader perspective that acknowledges that the Principles should apply not only for students with disabilities but also for English learners (ELs) and ELs with disabilities, as well as to all types of assessments in assessment systems. Similar to previous documents, it is designed to identify the principles and characteristics of inclusive assessment systems.

      Published: January 2016
    • NCEO Newsletter: June 2016 issue
      Formats:

      This issue is packed with events and activities in which NCEO is involved this spring. One big event was the launching of the NCEO Facebook page. Please visit and like NCEO! Some new reports and tools are also highlighted in this issue, including a Lessons Learned document, an updated Principles for Inclusive Assessment report, and a new Data Analytics tool on the demographics of ELs and ELs with disabilities. With June the month for the National Conference on Student Assessment (NCSA) in Philadelphia, the center is also highlight the pre-conference forum NCEO is holding with the Assessing Special Education Students SCASS and the EL SCASS - Common Language for States and Assessment Vendors. It focuses on the need for developing a common language around accessibility and accommodations for all students. NCEO hopes you will join in this important discussion. Finally, the center describe the NCSA sessions in which NCEO is involved.

      Published: June 2016
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2011-2012 APR Snapshot #9: AA-AAS Participation and Performance (#9)
      Formats:

      This report summarizes Alternate Assessment based on Alternate Achievement Standards (AA-AAS) data used for Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) accountability. Using federally submitted data from the 2011-2012 school year, we present information on the number of students participating in the AA-AAS and the performance of those students.

      Published: June 2016
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2011-2012 APR Snapshot #8: Assessment Accommodations Use by Students Receiving Special Education Services (#8)
      Formats:

      This report provides a snapshot of the participation and performance of student receiving special education services in statewide assessments used for Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) accountability. Using federally submitted data from the 2011-2012 school year, we present information on accommodations for reading and mathematics statewide assessments administered to grade 8 students (and grade 4 to show a comparison to grade 8 data).

      Published: May 2016
    • Lessons Learned About Assessment from Inclusion of Students with Disabilities in College and Career Ready Assessments
      Formats:

      The new large-scale assessments rolled out by consortia and states are designed to measure student achievement of rigorous college- and career-ready (CCR) standards. Recent surveys of teachers in several states indicate that students with disabilities adjusted well to the new assessments, and liked many of their features, but that there also are challenges. Some of these challenges are related to assessment issues that need to be addressed to improve accessibility and student outcomes. This Brief was prepared to provide information and suggestions for state education agencies (SEAs) and other technical assistance (TA) providers who work with local education agencies (LEAs). It highlights three main challenges identified by the teachers, and then addresses the implications for assessment and the implications for TA providers.

      Published: March 2016
    • NCEO Data Analytics: State and National Demographic Information for English Learners (ELs) and ELs with Disabilities, 2012-13 (#4)
      Formats:

      This interactive report presents data that states have submitted on the five languages most frequently used by English learners (ELs) in each state, the percent of identified ELs receiving services, the percent of ELs with disabilities, and a state profile page. The data are derived from Consolidated State Performance Reports (CSPRs), the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), and the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), and from calculations made using these sources for the school year 2012-13.

      Published: April 2016
    • NCSC Wiki
      Formats:

      An extensive collection of online resources for school personnel, policymakers, and parents nationwide created by the participants in the National Center and State Collaborative (NCSC). NCSC is a partnership of five centers and 24 states that developed a multi-state comprehensive assessment system for K-12 students with significant cognitive disabilities that includes a system of curriculum, instruction, and assessment, supporting instruction aligned to the Common Core State Standards. Among the resources in the wiki are curriculum and instruction materials to support classroom teaching, professional development tools for educators, tips and tools for parents, and a communication toolkit for teachers and speech-language pathologists serving students with disabilities who do not or do not yet use oral speech. These teaching and learning resources are now in use in every state, as well as in many other countries.

      Published: 2016
    • NCEO Reports: 2013-14 Publicly Reported Assessment Results for Students with Disabilities and ELLs with Disabilities (#401)
      Formats:

      This is the seventeenth report by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) that describes how states publicly report online assessment data for students with disabilities in K-12 schools in the United States. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) require states to disaggregate participation and performance data at the state level. The ESEA flexibility waivers that many states received also require states to report for the "all students" group as well as for all of the subgroups, including students in special education, as long as the number of students in a subgroup is equal to or above the minimum reporting number defined by the state. This report presents information on publicly reported participation and performance data for the 50 regular states and the 11 unique states. Recommendations are offered to states for the public reporting of disaggregated data for students with disabilities.

      Published: February 2016
    • NCEO Reports: Principles and Characteristics of Inclusive Assessment Systems in a Changing Assessment Landscape (#400)
      Formats:

      This document is the fourth in a series of Principles documents produced by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO). NCEO revisited and revised its 2008 Principles for inclusive assessment systems to respond to the many changes in the current educational assessment context. The revised Principles reflect a broader perspective that acknowledges that the Principles should apply not only for students with disabilities but also for English learners (ELs) and ELs with disabilities, as well as to all types of assessments in assessment systems. Similar to previous documents, it is designed to identify the principles and characteristics of inclusive assessment systems.

      Published: February 2016
    • NCEO Newsletter: February 2016 issue
      Formats:

      The year 2016 arrived quickly, and a lot already is happening. In this issue new products and activities are highlighted. New products include a Brief developed in collaboration with the National Center for Systemic Improvement (see Lessons Learned...) and a White Paper developed in collaboration with the English Language Proficiency Assessment for the 21st Century (ELPA21) consortium (see Alternate Assessment ...). Two new Enhanced Assessment Grant (EAG) projects are summarized - DIAMOND and ALTELLA (check below for the meaning of those acronyms). Finally, this issue highlights some presentations and meetings at the upcoming conferences in April (CEC and AERA).

      Published: February 2016
    • Lessons Learned About Instruction from Inclusion of Students with Disabilities in College and Career Ready Assessments
      Formats:

      The new large-scale assessments rolled out by consortia and states are designed to measure student achievement of rigorous college- and career-ready (CCR) standards. Recent surveys of teachers in several states indicate that students with disabilities like many features of the new assessments, but that there also are challenges. Many of these challenges are related to instructional issues that need to be addressed to improve student outcomes. This Brief was prepared to provide information and suggestions for state education agencies (SEAs) and other technical assistance (TA) providers who work with local education agencies (LEAs). It highlights four main challenges identified by the teachers, and then addresses the implications for instruction, the relationship to CCR standards, and the implications for TA providers.

      Published: January 2016
    • White Paper on English Language Learners with Significant Cognitive Disabilities
      Formats:

      This White Paper was developed by the Administration, Accessibility, and Accommodations Task Management Team (AAA TMT) to provide the English Language Proficiency Assessment for the 21st Century (ELPA21) states with recommendations for ways to include their English language learners (ELLs) with the most significant cognitive disabilities in an assessment of their English language proficiency. The ELPA21 states are developing a college- and career-ready assessment of English language proficiency (ELP). This assessment is designed for all ELLs except those who have the most significant cognitive disabilities.

      Published: January 2016
  • 2015 Publications

    • NCEO Data Analytics: Graduation Policies for Students with Disabilities Who Participate in States' General Assessments (#3)
      Formats:

      A report presenting the results of a study looking at coursework and exit exam requirements for students with IEPs compared to students without IEPs. This relates to the larger issues of graduation rates and requirements for earning a regular diploma -- issues that interest states as they work to ensure their students are ready for college and career when they leave school with a diploma.

      Published: November 2015
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Science Alternate Assessments based on Alternate Achievement Standards (AA-AAS) During School Year 2014-2015 (#99)
      Formats:

      A report that analyzes the characteristics of states' science alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS) in 2014-2015. Federal law requires that all students, including students with disabilities, participate in state assessments used for accountability purposes. It also requires states to assess students in several content areas, including science. Most students with disabilities take the general science assessment with or without accommodations, but a few students with the most significant cognitive disabilities participate in AA-AAS. Although federal regulations do allow states to define the complexity, depth, and breadth of the AA-AAS, the apparent lack of consistency in the domains assessed suggests that some students with significant cognitive disabilities may not be getting access to the same rigorous grade-appropriate content.

      Published: November 2015
    • Forum on Implementing Accessibility Frameworks for ALL Students
      Formats:

      Sixty individuals representing staff from state departments of education, school districts, other countries, testing and testing-related companies, and other educational organizations participated in a forum on June 22, 2015 in San Diego, California, to discuss implementing accessibility frameworks for all students, including students in general education, students who are English language learners (ELLs), and students with Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) or 504 plans. The forum was a pre-session to the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) National Conference on Student Assessment (NCSA), and was a collaboration of the Assessing Special Education Students (ASES) State Collaborative on Assessment and Student Standards (SCASS) and the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO). Although this report summarizes the introductory information provided to forum participants, its main purpose is to describe the panel presentations and the facilitated forum discussions.

      Published: October 2015
    • NCEO Newsletter: October 2015 issue
      Formats:

      An issue providing a link to the new NCEO Web site, with many new topics and lots of new information, plus summaries of, and links to, several new NCEO products. Among them is the report on the National Conference on Student Assessment pre-conference forum, titled Implementing Accessibility Frameworks for ALL Students, which focuses on the challenges and opportunities of the new context of many new assessments. This issue also highlights the results from the 2014 Survey of States, a report on graduation policies for students with disabilities who participate instates' general assessments, and the latest Data Analytics report on public reporting of state assessment data on students with disabilities.

      Published: October 2015
    • NCEO State Surveys: 2014 Survey of States: Initiatives, Trends, and Accomplishments
      Formats:

      A report providing a snapshot of the new initiatives, trends, accomplishments, and emerging issues during this important period of education reform as states documented the academic achievement of students with disabilities. This is the fourteenth such survey of states conducted by NCEO. States were cognizant of the benefits of inclusive assessment and accountability systems, and continued to improve assessment design, participation, accessibility and accommodations policies, monitoring practices, and data reporting.

      Published: September, 2015
    • NCEO Data Analytics: 2012-13 Publicly Reported Assessment Results for Students with Disabilities and ELLs with Disabilities (#2)
      Formats:

      An interactive, online brief analyzing public reporting practices for assessment data for students with disabilities in K-12 schools in the United States. This interactive brief is based on NCEO Technical Report 70: 2012-13 Publicly Reported Assessment Results for Students with Disabilities and ELLs with Disabilities. The purpose of this study was to analyze whether states report data for students with disabilities "to the public with the same frequency and in the same detail as it reports on the assessment of nondisabled children," as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

      Published: August 2015
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Graduation Policies for Students with Disabilities who Participate in States' General Assessments (#98)
      Formats:

      A report detailing the results of states' 2014-15 requirements for students with disabilities who participate in the general assessment to earn a regular diploma, and comparing the requirements held for them to the requirements held for their peers. This NCEO investigation relates to the recent nationwide push for all students, including those with disabilities, to leave school ready for college and career has heightened the importance of understanding what states are requiring of students with disabilities to earn a regular diploma. Researchers examined both the course requirements and, in those states that had them, the exit assessment requirements.

      Published: July 2015
    • NCEO Brief: Making Accessibility Decisions for ALL Students (#11)
      Formats:

      A Brief presenting information on steps to take in the transition from a focus on making decisions about accommodations for students with disabilities and English language learners (ELLs), to a focus on decisions about accessibility and accommodations required by the new assessment approaches of states and collaboratives of states. These new approaches include making decisions for students without an identified disability or ELL status. Seven steps are highlighted that will be useful for states in organizing professional development for educators who will be making accessibility decisions, and for educators themselves who are seeking information on making optimal decisions about accessibility tools and accommodations that meet individual student needs.

      Published: June 2015
    • NCEO Newsletter: June 2015 issue
      Formats:

      An issue providing a preview of the National Conference on Student Assessment pre-conference forum that NCEO is holding with the Assessing Special Education Students SCASS - Implementing Accessibility Frameworks for ALL Students. It focuses on the challenges and opportunities of the new context of many assessments - technology based, with new tools available to all students, some accessibility features available to students with documented needs, and accommodations for a defined set of students. The discussion is free and open to the public. Also highlighted in this issue is a new approach that NCEO is taking to present some of its rich data-based reports. NCEO's new series of Data Analytics reports allows the user to obtain customized information about state data and policies. The first report, highlighted in this issue, focuses on graduation requirements for students with significant cognitive disabilities. Look for other topics in the near future! The last article tells how Martha Thurlow was honored at the 2015 Council for Exceptional Children conference in San Diego in April with the CEC Lifetime Achievement Award.

      Published: June 2015
    • NCEO Technical Reports: 2012-13 Publicly Reported Assessment Results for Students with Disabilities and ELLs with Disabilities (#70)
      Formats:

      A report analyzing public reporting practices for assessment data for students with disabilities in K-12 schools in the United States. This report -- the 16th of its kind by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) -- includes information about both the 50 regular states and the 11 unique states. For the 2012-13 school year, 52 of the 61 regular and unique states reported participation and performance data for students with disabilities for all general and alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS) that were used for Title I within the ESEA accountability system. Information about state assessments not used for Title I is also presented. Information on public reporting for English Language Learners (ELLs) with disabilities is also included in this report.

      Published: May 2015
    • NCEO Data Analytics: Graduation Policies for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities Who Participate in States' AA-AAS (#1)
      Formats:

      An online, interactive brief presenting the results of NCEO's analysis of states' graduation policies for their students with significant cognitive disabilities who participate in the alternate assessment based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS). There is increasing interest in graduation rates and regular diploma requirements as states aim to ensure their students are college- and career-ready when they leave school with a diploma. Yet little was known about states' graduation policies and this prompted the current analysis.

      Published: March 2015
    • NCEO Newsletter: February 2015 issue
      Formats:

      An issue highlighting findings from a recent National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) report on graduation requirements for students with significant cognitive disabilities who participate in the alternate assessment based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS). This issue also provides snapshots of updates on the six assessments consortia - PARCC, Smarter Balanced, DLM, NCSC, ASSETS, and ELPA21! These snapshots focus on the consortia's efforts for students with disabilities and ELLs, including ELLs with disabilities. Finally, if you will be in Palm Springs for the ATP Conference, or in San Diego for the CEC Conference, or in Chicago for the AERA/NCME Conferences, NCEO has for you a list of the sessions that will be delivered, moderated, or chaired by Center staff.

      Published: February 2015
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Considerations When Including Students with Disabilities in Test Security Policies (#23)
      Formats:

      A report concluding that assessments better measure what students know and can do when states and consortia thoughtfully consider how to balance test security and accessibility. Many states are concerned that their test security policies may not adequately address accommodated tests, alternate assessments, and other related issues. For example, a survey conducted by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (2013) found that 45 states believed that their state test was vulnerable to cheating when testing students in need of accommodations. Test security policies and procedures need to address test administration procedures, accommodations, and other issues related to students with disabilities to help ensure the integrity and validity of a test. A fundamental consideration when evaluating the validity of an assessment is the "fairness" of the test.

      Published: February 2015
  • 2014 Publications

    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Graduation Policies for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities Who Participate in States' AA-AAS (#97)
      Formats:

      A report analyzing the graduation requirements and diploma options for students with the most significant cognitive disabilities who participate in states' alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS). The authors found that nearly 70% of states' policies indicated that students with the most significant cognitive disabilities who participate in the AA-AAS can receive a regular diploma. The criteria for doing so in these states were extremely varied, from those that have the exact same requirements to those that allow the IEP team to set the criteria. In states with policies that indicated that students with the most significant cognitive disabilities who participate in the AA-AAS could not receive a regular diploma, all but one state indicated that other end-of-school documents (e.g., certificates, special diplomas) were available to these students. The information the authors found and that was provided during the verification process provides important information for the field. Their findings should provide a basis for discussions within states as they consider their policies in light of college and career readiness imperatives.

      Published: 2014
    • Audio Support Guidelines for Accessible Assessments: Insights From Cognitive Labs
      Formats:

      A report examining how some students, including students with print disabilities, students with low vision, and English language learners, may benefit from having test content read aloud. However, there have been challenges in standardizing the presentation of test content, including whether or not to read answer choices or to describe maps and cartoons, among many other issues. Technology-enhanced assessment offers the opportunity to provide standardized audio support delivered through the test platform. One goal of the Guidelines for Accessible Assessment Project (GAAP) was to develop a set of audio guidelines that could be used across states. Overall, the findings from the cognitive labs support the need for taking an individualized approach in providing audio support for assessments.

      Published: December 2014
    • Sign Support Guidelines for Accessible Assessments: Insights From Cognitive Labs
      Formats:

      A report observing that students who are deaf or hard of hearing (Deaf/HH) and communicate using American Sign Language (ASL) may benefit from sign accommodations on state assessments. However, there have been challenges in standardizing assessment content including how items should be signed. Technology-enhanced assessment offers the opportunity to provide standardized sign support delivered through the test platform. One goal of the Guidelines for Accessible Assessment Project (GAAP) was to develop research-based sign guidelines that can be used across states, consortia, and assessment vendors to produce reliable and valid signed representations of assessment items and tasks for students who communicate using sign language. This report highlights the findings from cognitive labs conducted with students to gain their input and feedback on the proposed guidelines. A total of 46 elementary-, middle-, and high-school-aged students who were Deaf/HH and communicated using ASL participated in cognitive labs. The research findings point to the students' preferences for the provision of the sign support in general and for this support being grounded in ASL rather than representations aligned with other languages.

      Published: December 2014
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2011-2012 APR Snapshot #7: State Assessment Participation and Performance of Students Receiving Special Education Services (#7)
      Formats:

      This year 2014 report provides participation and performance information for students with disabilities in general assessments used for federal accountability in 2011-2011. Data include information on reading and math, focusing on grade eight.

      Published: December 2014
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: States' Flexibility Waiver Plans for Alternate Assessments Based on Alternate Achievement Standards (AA-AAS) (#96)
      Formats:

      A report compiling, analyzing, and summarizing what states said about the Alternate Assessments Based on Alternate Achievement Standards (AA-AAS) in their waiver applications. The U.S. Department of Education offered these waivers to states that requested flexibility from some of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act accountability requirements. The states' waiver applications included information that pertained to the AA-AAS, alternate achievement standards, and the students with disabilities who participate in the AA-AAS.

      Published: 2014
    • NCEO Newsletter: October 2014 issue
      Formats:

      An issue highlighting the launching of the 2014 NCEO Survey of States, summaries of two new reports on accommodations on English language proficiency assessments for low-incidence disabilities, and resources available from the July 2014 Webinar on "Successfully Transitioning Away from the 2% Assessment." Many of these resources are applicable to states seeking ways to improve use of data to identify intervention approaches, provide access to instruction, and improve implementation of standards-based Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). This issue also contains a short survey about the NCEO e-newsletter itself.

      Published: October 2014
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: 2013 State Policies for Selected Response Accommodations on Statewide Assessments (#93)
      Formats:

      A report providing information on selected response accommodations (i.e., Human Scribe, Speech to Text, Audio Transcription, Grammar Checker, Spell Checker, Calculator) that were included in state policies in 2013 for reading/ELA, math, and writing assessments. NCEO has been tracking and analyzing states' policies on assessment accommodations since 1992.

      Published: September 2014
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: A Summary of the Research on the Effects of Test Accommodations, 2011-2012 (#94)
      Formats:

      A report providing an update on the state of the research on testing accommodations as well as to identify promising future areas of research. Previous reports by NCEO have covered research published since 1999. NCEO summarizes the research to review current research trends and enhance understanding of the implications of accommodations use in the development of future policy directions, implementation of current and new accommodations, and valid and reliable interpretations when accommodations are used in testing situations. For 2011 and 2012, 49 published research studies on the topic of testing accommodations were found. The studies in 2011-2012 demonstrated several similarities when viewing them in comparison with previous research, especially in relation to the 2009-2010 studies examined in NCEO's previous accommodations research review.

      Published: September 2014
    • Including Students who are Blind or Visually Impaired in English Language Proficiency Assessments: A Review of State Policies
      Formats:

      A report updating information on state participation and accommodations policies for English language learners (ELLs) who are Blind/Visually Impaired (VI) on English language proficiency (ELP) assessments used for Title III accountability. Accommodations policies are discussed with reference to seven accommodations in three categories that are commonly used by ELLs who are Blind/VI. Included are five accommodations from the Presentation category (Braille, Large Print, Read Aloud Directions, Read Aloud Questions, Screen Reader/Text to Speech), one accommodation from the Response category (Brailler), and one accommodation from the Equipment category (Magnification Equipment).

      Published: August 2014
    • Successfully Transitioning Away from the 2% Assessment: Frequently Asked Questions
      Formats:

      On August 23, 2013, the U.S. Department of Education published a proposed rollback of the regulation that allowed the alternate assessment based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS). In February 2014, a meeting was held for states to develop plans to transition away from the AA-MAS. During the meeting, states had the opportunity to ask question of the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), as well as other experts, about the use of data, accommodations, standards-based IEPs, and universal design. This set of Frequently Asked Questions represent commonly asked questions raised during this meeting.

      Published: July 2014
    • Successfully Transitioning Away from the 2% Assessment
      Formats:
      • Presentations

        Georgia

      • Present

      • Presentations (North Carolina)

      • Presentations (North Dakota)

      A Webinar for states that are transitioning away from the 2% assessment - the alternate assessment based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS) that is being discontinued. The materials from this Webinar are available on the NCEO Web site that contains resources for states transitioning away from the 2% assessment.

      Published: July 31, 2014
    • NCEO Technical Reports: 2011-12 Publicly Reported Assessment Results for Students with Disabilities and ELLs with Disabilities (#69)
      Formats:

      A report analyzing public reporting practices for assessment data for students with disabilities in K-12 schools in the United States -- the 15th NCEO report to do so. The publication presents information on publicly reported participation and performance data for the 50 regular states and the 11 unique states (American Samoa, Bureau of Indian Education, Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands, U.S. Department of Defense Education Activities, District of Columbia, Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, Palau, Puerto Rico, Republic of the Marshall Islands, and U.S. Virgin Islands). For the 2011-12 school year, 49 of the 61 states reported participation and performance data for students with disabilities for all general assessments within the ESEA accountability system. Fifty-one states reported participation and performance data for alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS) that were within the ESEA system. Information about state assessments outside of ESEA is also presented. This report additionally includes information on public reporting for English language learners (ELLs) with disabilities, and includes recommendations for future public reporting of disaggregated data for students with disabilities.

      Published: July 2014
    • NCEO Brief: Exploring Alternate ELP Assessments for ELLs with Significant Cognitive Disabilities (#10)
      Formats:

      A brief presenting information on what we know about the participation of English language learners (ELLs) with disabilities in state alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS), highlighting information collected by NCEO that informs what we know about the participation of ELLs with disabilities in alternate English language proficiency (ELP) assessments. Topics addressed in the brief include: (a) the size of the population of ELLs with disabilities; (b) what states say about the inclusion of ELLs with disabilities in alternate ELP assessments, and the participation of ELLs with disabilities in alternate ELP assessments; and (c) experts' recommendations about alternate ELP assessments for ELLs with significant cognitive disabilities. Conclusions focus on four recommendations for consideration.

      Published: July 2014
    • Including Students who are Deaf or Hard-of-hearing in English Language Proficiency Assessments: A Review of State Policies
      Formats:

      A report documenting participation and accommodation policies for English language learners (ELLs) who are Deaf/Hard of Hearing (HH) on English language proficiency (ELP) assessments used for Title III accountability. Accommodations policies are discussed with reference to five accommodations commonly used by ELLs who are Deaf/HH, including: Sign Interpret Directions, Sign Interpret Questions, Visual Cues, Sign Response, and Amplification Equipment. Over time, states' policies on participation and accommodations on ELP assessments for ELLs who are Deaf/HH have continued to evolve and become more detailed. Still, there is room for improvement. States should continue to evaluate the construct being measured by each domain and evaluate how specific accommodations impact the validity of student scores. Controversial accommodations should be re-evaluated to make sure that the greatest numbers of students have access to the assessment while maintaining the construct being measured. States should also determine whether and in what circumstances selective participation by domain is appropriate for ELLs who are Deaf/HH.

      Published: 2014
    • NCEO Newsletter: June 2014 issue
      Formats:

      An issue highlighting some of NCEO's recent work on the survey of states which will be sent in the fall of 2014, the transition from the alternate assessment based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS), and sessions of interest at the National Conference on Student Assessment in New Orleans, June 25-27, 2014.

      Published: June 2014
    • NCEO Brief: State Assessment Decision-Making Processes for ELLs with Disabilities (#9)
      Formats:

      A brief presenting information on what is known about assessment decision-making processes for English language learners (ELLs) with disabilities. It highlights information that has been collected by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) as well as information from other sources. Topics addressed in the brief include: (a) required assessment decision-making processes, (b) experts' recommendations about assessment decision making for ELLs with disabilities, (c) resources available to guide assessment decision making, (d) standards-based IEPs, and (e) recommended participants on the decision-making team. Conclusions focus on the six key areas in which policymakers should provide guidance for educators.

      Published: June 2014
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Test Security and Students with Disabilities: An Analysis of States' 2013-14 Test Security Policies (#95)
      Formats:

      A report analyzing how accommodated tests, and students with disabilities and the assessments they take, are addressed in state test security policies - a subject about which little is known. This analysis was conducted to partially fill this gap. The report provides a snapshot of how accommodated tests for students with disabilities, alternate assessments, and other related issues were addressed in states' test security policies in 2013-14. The specific research questions were, "What information do states' test security policies contain about students with disabilities and the assessments they take?" and "How are accommodations included in states test security policies?"

      Published: June 2014
    • National Center on Educational Outcomes YouTube Channel
      Formats:

      A YouTube channel displaying videos created by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO), which works with states across the country to provide leadership to include students with disabilities and English language learners (ELLs) in large-scale state assessments.

      Published: 2014
    • NCEO Brief: Participation of ELLs with Disabilities in ELP Assessments (#8)
      Formats:

      A brief presenting information on what is known about the participation of English language learners (ELLs) with disabilities in state English language proficiency (ELP) assessments. It highlights information collected by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO), as well as information from other sources. Topics addressed in the brief include: (a) state policies on participation, (b) use and reporting of data on participation in ELP assessments, (c) experts' recommendations about assessment participation, and (d) the understanding of practitioners about the participation of ELLs with disabilities in ELP assessments. Conclusions focus on four recommendations for consideration.

      Published: May 2014
    • Parent Spotlight: Parent Spotlight on Accommodations for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      This booklet was written to provide information to parents and others about accommodations for students with disabilities.

      Published: April 2014
    • Parent Spotlight: Parent Spotlight on Common Core State Standards and Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      This booklet was written to provide information to parents and others about Common Core State Standards for students with disabilities.

      Published: April 2014
    • Parent Spotlight: Parent Spotlight on IEPs and Common Core State Standards and Assessments
      Formats:

      This booklet was written to provide information to parents and others about Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) and the newly adopted academic standards, the Common Core State Standards.

      Published: April 2014
    • Parent Spotlight: Parent Spotlight on 504 Plans and Common Core State Standards and Assessments
      Formats:

      This booklet was written to provide information to parents and others about 504 accommodation plans and the newly adopted academic standards, the Common Core State Standards.

      Published: April 2014
    • Parent Spotlight: Enfoque de los Padres de Familia en Adaptaciones para Estudiantes con Discapacidades
      Formats:

      Este folleto fue redactado para proveer informacion a los padres de familia y a otros con respecto a las adaptaciones para estudiantes con discapacidades.

      Published: April 2014
    • Parent Spotlight: Enfoque de los Padres de Familia en los Estándares Académicos Esenciales del Estado y Estudiantes con Discpacidades
      Formats:

      Este folleto fue redactado para proveer información a los padres de familia y a otros con respecto a los Estándares Académicos Esenciales del Estado para estudiantes con discapacidades.

      Published: April 2014
    • Parent Spotlight: Enfoque de los Padres de Familia en los Planes IEP y los Estándares Académicos Esenciales y las Evaluaciones del Estado
      Formats:

      Este folleto fue redactado para proveer información a los padres de familia y a otros con respecto a los Programas Individualizados de Educación (IEPs por sus siglas en inglés) y los estándares académicos recientemente adoptados llamados Estándares Académicos Esenciales y las Evaluaciones del Estado.

      Published: April 2014
    • Parent Spotlight: Enfoque de los Padres de Familia en los Planes 504 y los Estándares Académicos Esenciales y las Evaluaciones del Estado
      Formats:

      Este folleto fue redactado para proveer información a los padres de familia y a otros con respecto a los planes de adaptaciones 504 y los estándares académicos recientemente adoptados llamados Estándares Académicos Esenciales del Estado.

      Published: April 2014
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Successfully Transitioning from the AA-MAS to the General Assessment (#22)
      Formats:

      A report exploring how federal policy initiatives such as the flexibility waivers for accountability are requiring that states transition away from the use of an alternate assessment based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS). It is expected that those students who had participated in that assessment will instead participate in the state's general assessment (or a Race-to-the-Top consortium assessment if the state belongs to one). It is important that this transition be successful. Much has been learned through the development of the AA-MAS and its implementation. These lessons learned form the basis for ensuring the successful transition from the AA-MAS to the general assessment. Indeed, the lessons learned from the AA-MAS provide important information for all states as they strive to ensure that their general assessments are appropriate for a broad range of students. This Policy Directions offers suggestions for strategies to move the students currently participating in the AA-MAS to the general assessment.

      Published: February 2014
    • NCEO Newsletter: February 2014 issue
      Formats:

      An issue highlighting the findings from NCEO's Improving the Validity of Assessment Results for English Language Learners with Disabilities (IVARED) project that led focus groups with 232 school and district practitioners to better understand issues and challenges educators face in making appropriate decisions for English language learners (ELLs). It also announces the launching of IVARED's learning modules on ELLs with disabilities. Another launch is NCEO's first YouTube channel with videos from NCEO's Online Training to Improve Accommodations Decision Making. This issue also contains a list of sessions delivered, moderated, or chaired by NCEO staff at the NCME, AERA, or CEC conferences in Philadelphia in April 2014.

      Published: February 2014
    • NCEO Brief: Considerations for Consortia as States Transition Away from AA-MAS (#7)
      Formats:

      A brief addressing the need for consortia to assist their member states in moving away from the alternate assessment based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS). It focuses on key considerations for consortia as they address the inclusion of low-performing students in all member states, informed by the lessons learned from the AA-MAS. Topics highlighted in this brief are: including low-performing students in field test designs, customizing non-summative assessments to include low-performing students, and collecting and examining data on this group of students.

      Published: February 2014
  • 2013 Publications

    • Voices From the Field: Making State Assessment Decisions for English Language Learners With Disabilities
      Formats:

      A report describing an activity undertaken by the Improving the Validity of Assessment Results for ELLs with Disabilities (IVARED) project, which is a consortium of the five states of Arizona, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, and Washington, led by Minnesota. In collaboration with the National Center on Educational Outcomes, these states sought to understand ways to make state accountability assessments more valid and reliable for English language learners (ELLs) with disabilities. This report describes how IVARED tried to better understand the current assessment and accommodation decision-making process, test score use practices, and issues and challenges educators face in making appropriate decisions for ELLs with disabilities. Online focus groups were conducted in each of the five states with a total of 232 school, district, and state practitioners who had expertise in working with this population of students.

      Published: 2013
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Results of a Cognitive Interview Study of Immediate Feedback and Revision Opportunities for Students with Disabilities in Large Scale Assessments (#92)
      Formats:

      A report covering a study that was part of a larger research project originally designed to investigate an approach to Alternate Assessments with Modified Achievement Standards that provides immediate feedback and revision opportunities for students when they answer test items. After answering an item, students would receive feedback about whether the answer was correct or incorrect and would be given additional chances to correct their answer (for partial credit). This particular study employed cognitive interviews to determine whether: (a) Feedback and Revision had a qualitative impact on student interaction with the assessment (i.e., students' interview responses suggest that the feedback and revision feature had an impact on those students' success on the test), and (b) there were qualitative differences between groups of students with and without disabilities (i.e., students' interview responses suggest that the utility and effects of feedback and revision differ for these two groups).

      Published: December 2013
    • IVARED Learning Module
      Formats:

      A set of five online learning modules helping educators make good assessment decisions for students who are English language learners (ELLs) with disabilities. Access to the modules is free and open to all educators. Educators can register for a username and password, and then log in whenever they like and work their way through the modules. Most users take 70-90 minutes to complete all five sections.

      Published: 2013
    • NCEO Newsletter: October 2013 issue
      Formats:

      An issue highlighting findings from the 2012 survey of states, information on two new NCEO products--a tool that groups can use to build consensus on a topic, and a report covering current state policies on accommodations for delivering assessments orally. It also profiles an innovative online training for educators to improve decisions made about accommodations for individual students. Finally, this issue focuses on three manuals developed collaboratively by states, the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), and NCEO, and published by CCSSO, to help guide accommodations decision-making.

      Published: October 2013
    • Multi-Attribute Consensus Building Tool
      Formats:

      A tool that can be used to help groups prioritize strategies, decisions, recommendations, or policies. It has been used by NCEO for over a decade and the use of the Multi-Attribute Consensus Building (MACB) method has been well-received.

      Published: September 2013
    • Forum on Addressing Performance Gaps of Low-performing Students: Implications for Assessment and Instruction
      Formats:

      A report describing the facilitated discussions and the consensus reached at a forum on June 19, 2013, in National Harbor, Maryland, to discuss the performance gaps of low-performing students and their implications for assessment and instruction. The forum was a pre-session at the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) National Conference on Student Assessment (NSCA) where 62 individuals representing 16 states, three school districts, 11 testing and testing-related companies, and 11 other organizations participated. Summaries of the discussions were developed from notes taken by notetakers, and action plans were synthesized through the consensus-building process. The report also summarizes the introductory information provided to forum participants.

      Published: September 2013
    • NCEO State Surveys: 2012 Survey of States: Successes and Challenges During a Time of Change
      Formats:

      A report providing a snapshot of new initiatives, trends, accomplishments, and emerging issues during this important period of education reform as states document the academic achievement of students with disabilities. This is the thirteenth such survey of states conducted by NCEO. States also reported information about the alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS), and on new developments in assessment such as teacher evaluation and how they are contributing to the consortia. In the three years since the previous survey, states continued to make strong progress, though challenges remained and several new issues emerged.

      Published: September 2013
    • Online Training to Improve Accommodations Decision Making
      Formats:

      A curriculum designed to coach educators on best practices in how to select, administer, and evaluate the use of accommodations. This interactive, multi-media professional development tool contains five modules with case-based video clips on NCEO's YouTube Channel. NCEO developed the training collaboratively with the state of Alabama, but it can also be used in other states.

      Published: 2013
    • NCEO Technical Reports: 2010-11 Publicly Reported Assessment Results for Students with Disabilities and ELLs with Disabilities (#68)
      Formats:

      A report analyzing public reporting practices for assessment data for students with disabilities in K-12 schools in the United States. This report, which is the fourteenth of its kind by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO), includes information about both the 50 regular states and the 11 unique states (American Samoa, Bureau of Indian Education, Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands, U.S. Department of Defense Education Activities, District of Columbia, Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, Palau, Puerto Rico, Republic of the Marshall Islands, and U.S. Virgin Islands).

      Published: September 2013
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: 2012 State Policies for Accommodations Used to Deliver Assessments Orally (#91)
      Formats:

      A report examining the wide variation across states in their accommodations policies for Human Reader, Text to Speech, and Pre-recorded Audio. The results of the analyses in the report can inform states and the general assessment consortia--PARCC and Smarter Balanced--as they plan for the transition to their new assessments. Among other things, the report provides an easy way to develop a crosswalk of policies on these accommodations to the new consortia policies.

      Published: August 2013; revised January 2014
    • Accommodations for Students with Disabilities on State English Language Proficiency Assessments: A Review of 2011 State Policies
      Formats:

      A report documenting states' participation and accommodation policies for English language learners (ELLs) with disabilities on their English Language Proficiency (ELP) assessments. The states' online policies from 2011, after state verification, showed that 49 states addressed participation criteria for ELLs with disabilities. Of these states, 36 states allowed for selective participation of students with disabilities on the ELP assessment, meaning that a student may participate in some domains but not others. Most often, ELLs who were deaf/hard of hearing or who had visual impairments or blindness were considered for selective participation. The summary of findings suggests that over time, states have become more detailed in their policies relating to participation and accommodations for ELLs with disabilities on ELP assessments. Continued attention to the participation and performance of ELLs with disabilities in ELP and other state assessments is essential.

      Published: August 2013
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Accommodation Policies for States' Alternate Assessments based on Alternate Achievement Standards (AA-AAS) (#90)
      Formats:

      A report focusing on accommodation policies for alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS). NCEO has analyzed participation and accommodation policies for students with disabilities on state administered assessments since 1992 and this report is part of that long-term study. In addition to presenting a national overview of policies, this report also addresses the results of NCEO's policy analysis by the four content assessment consortia -- Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC), Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC), Dynamic Learning Maps (DLM), and National Center and State Collaborative (NCSC). The researchers' summary of the results of their analysis of accommodation policies for AA-AAS is organized under three areas of focus: the terms states used to describe changes in assessment administration, the specific accommodations addressed in policies overall, the accommodations addressed for ELLs and accommodation guidelines provided by states. Detailed information overall and by the four consortia are provided in the report appendices.

      Published: July 2013
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2010-2011 APR Snapshot #5: Assessment Accommodations Use by Students Receiving Special Education Services (#5)
      Formats:

      This year 2013 report provides information on the number of students with disabilities using accommodations and their performance on general statewide assessments used for federal accountability in 2010-2011. The report focuses on data in reading and math for grades four and eight.

      Published: June 2013
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2010-2011 APR Snapshot #6: AA-AAS Participation and Performance (#6)
      Formats:

      This year 2013 report summarizes data for students with disabilities participating in alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards used for federal accountability in 2010-2011. Data include information on the number of students participating and the performance of those students.

      Published: June 2013
    • NCEO Newsletter: June 2013 Issue
      Formats:

      An e-newsletter issue highlighting the whirlwind of changes affecting assessments - the CCSS, the assessment consortia, shifting assessment policies, flexibility waivers, and more - and how they all relate to students with disabilities.

      Published: June 2013
    • Assessment Principles and Guidelines for ELLs with Disabilities
      Formats:

      A report detailing the work of an Institute project called Improving the Validity of Assessment Results for English Language Learners with Disabilities (IVARED) that has identified essential principles of inclusive and valid assessments for English language learners (ELLs) with disabilities. These principles were developed from a review process with nationally recognized experts in special education, English as a second language or bilingual education, assessment, and accountability. Additional input was obtained through discussion of the principles at national assessment and education conferences, as well as during meetings of the Council of Chief State School Officers State Collaborative on Assessments and Student Standards (SCASS) groups. This report presents five core principles of valid assessments for this population of students, along with a brief rationale and specific guidelines that reflect each principle.

      Published: 2013
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: States' Flexibility Plans for Phasing Out the Alternate Assessment Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards (AA-MAS) by 2014-15 (#89)
      Formats:

      A report compiling, analyzing, and summarizing states' plans for phasing out the alternate assessment based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS) in their approved waiver applications. The U.S. Department of Education offered states the flexibility waiver from some of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) accountability requirements on condition that the states provide a plan to phase out the use of the AA-MAS for ESEA accountability by the 2014-15 school year.

      Published: March 2013
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2010-2011 APR Snapshot #4: State Assessment Participation and Performance of Students Receiving Special Education Services (#4)
      Formats:

      This year 2013 report summarizes participation and performance data for students with disabilities taking general state assessments in reading and math, used for federal accountability in 2010-2011.

      Published: 2013
    • Lessons Learned in Federally Funded Projects that Can Improve the Instruction and Assessment of Low Performing Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      A report detailing the work of researchers from projects funded by the U.S. Department of Education in 2006-2007 under three funding sources (General Supervision Enhancement Grants, Enhanced Assessment Grants, and Supplemental Funding) who were invited to compile their major findings and discuss the lessons they learned from their studies on alternate assessments based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS). The intent of this publication is to carry these lessons forward to the creators of next generation assessments. The timing for this information is critical, as funding for AA-MAS research has ended, and administration of AA-MAS tests is expected to cease in many states when new assessments are ready in 2014-2015. Almost all students with disabilities who were eligible for an AA-MAS will then be participating in the new general assessments. It is imperative that the lessons learned from this group of projects about the students and the barriers they experience during assessment are well understood as these changes occur. Researchers report on 14 separate projects involving 26 states, and the report is organized into four main sections: The Students, Test Development, Technology-enhanced Assessment, and System Implications.

      Published: 2013
  • 2012 Publications

    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Alternate Assessments Based on Alternate Achievement Standards (AA-AAS) Participation Policies (#88)
      Formats:

      A report focusing on participation policies for alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS). Since 1992, NCEO has analyzed participation and accommodation policies for students with disabilities on state administered assessments, and has developed reports on policies for regular assessments, AA-AAS, and alternate assessments based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS). Publicly available participation guidelines were compiled and analyzed for 58 states and entities (Washington DC, Guam, etc.). In addition to providing a national picture of policies, it presents the results of the policy analysis by each of the four content assessment consortia that have been funded to develop new assessment systems: two that are developing regular assessment systems (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers - PARCC, and Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium - SBAC), and two that are developing systems for alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (Dynamic Learning Maps - DLM, and National Center and State Collaborative - NCSC).

      Published: December 2012
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2008-2009 APR Snapshot #3: AA-AAS Participation and Performance (#3)
      Formats:

      This year 2012 report summarizes the participation and performance of students with significant cognitive disabilities on Alternate Assessments based on Alternate Achievement Standards used by states for federal accountability, in 2008-2009.

      Published: December 2012
    • NCEO Technical Reports: A Summary of the Research on the Effects of Test Accommodations: 2009-2010 (#65)
      Formats:

      A report providing an update on the state of the research on testing accommodations as well as identifying promising future areas of research. Previous reports by NCEO have covered research published since 1999. The authors summarize the research to review current research trends and enhance understanding of the implications of accommodations use in the development of future policy directions, implementation of current and new accommodations, and valid and reliable interpretations when accommodations are used in testing situations. In 2009 and 2010, 48 published research studies on the topic of testing accommodations were found. The studies in 2009-2010 demonstrated several similarities when viewing them in comparison with previous research, especially in relation to the 2007-2008 studies examined in the previous accommodations research review. However, there were several differences, or shifts, as well.

      Published: November 2012
    • Forum on Evaluating Educator Effectiveness: Critical Considerations for Including Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      A report summarizing the discussion at the Forum on Evaluating Educator Effectiveness held in June 2012 in Minneapolis. Thirty-six individuals representing a dozen states, four testing companies, and six other organizations participated in the forum, which was a pre-session to the Council of Chief State School Officers National Conference on Student Assessment, and was a collaboration of the Assessing Special Education Students State Collaborative on Assessment and State Standards and the National Center on Educational Outcomes. Its purpose was to address the challenging issues that exist in including students with disabilities and their teachers in educator evaluation systems, and to provide state representatives and other interested parties with an opportunity to meet and share their perspectives on this topic, particularly in light of the changing nature of accountability systems across the United States. This report summarizes the introductory material provided to participants, and presents a summary of the discussions in three facilitated topic discussion sessions focusing on including assessment results of students with disabilities, using IEP goals or student learning objectives, and developing a balanced model for educator effectiveness evaluations.

      Published: 2012
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Test Administrators' Perspectives on the Use of the Read Aloud Accommodation in Math on State Tests for Accountability (#66)
      Formats:

      A report describing a study conducted by NCEO, in collaboration with the South Dakota Department of Education, that used focus group methodology to look closer at what happens in the room on test day when the read-aloud accommodation is used on mathematics assessments. Focus groups were conducted with educators who had administered the read-aloud accommodation for the South Dakota state mathematics assessment. Focus group discussions revealed a variety of issues on the read-aloud accommodation. Results from this study may inform local and state level policies on read-aloud administration.

      Published: October 2012
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Using Cognitive Labs to Evaluate Student Experiences with the Read-Aloud Accommodation in Math (#67)
      Formats:

      A report describing a study of the read-aloud accommodation, which is frequently used on mathematics assessments. However, Individualized Education Program (IEP) teams often find it difficult to make appropriate decisions about this accommodation. NCEO and the South Dakota Department of Education examined how students performed on a math test with the read-aloud accommodation compared to how they performed without it. The study also explored students' perceptions of how the accommodation worked. Results from the study, found in this report, can help inform local and state level policies and procedures.

      Published: September 2012
    • The Focused Approach Planning Guide: Tools to Improve Student Access
      Formats:

      A report describing an activity conducted by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction to refine and pilot a set of planning tools that can be used to improve access of all students, including low-performing students with disabilities, to grade-level content. Wisconsin conducted this work as part of the Multi-state GSEG Consortium Toward a Defensible AA-MAS. The intent of this publication is to provide information about such tools so that other educators and planning teams can use them to develop plans that will lead to better access to academic content for all learners.

      Published: September 2012
    • NCEO Brief: Including Students with Disabilities in Common Non-Summative Assessments (#6)
      Formats:

      A brief -- the sixth in a series for the Race to the Top Assessment Consortia -- addressing the Consortia's need to develop an inclusive approach to their non-summative assessments, including their optional interim assessments. Consideration should be given to: (a) the implementation of universal design principles; (b) the development of clear participation criteria and guidelines; and (c) accommodation policies that account for good testing practices, embedded features of technology-based assessments, and additional accommodations. This brief encourages the Consortia to build on what has been learned from inclusive large-scale assessments.

      Published: July 2012
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Rules for Audio Representation of Science Items on a Statewide Assessment: Results of a Comparative Study (#64)
      Formats:

      A report describing a study that investigated an online auditory feature of an assessment designed to provide students who have challenges with print reading with content information. Large-scale educational assessment practice has moved consistently from a paper-and-pencil exercise to online assessments over the past decade. New formats for testing allow for new opportunities to provide students with disabilities access to items so that they may most validly demonstrate their knowledge. In an effort to evaluate the impact of how content is presented in auditory fashion, project personnel at NimbleTools® and the National Center on Educational Outcomes examined three approaches to "scripting" or creating audio representations of items. The results are presented in this report.

      Published: June 2012
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: Developing and Researching an Accessible Reading Assessment for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      A report documenting the Partnership for Accessible Reading Assessment's (PARA) field test to determine the degree to which its accessible reading assessment provided for accessibility, validity, and comparability for students with learning disabilities (LD), speech-language impairments (SLI), intellectual disabilities (ID), and deafness/hard of hearing (D/HH). The PARA field test of its accessible assessment compared to a proxy state assessment was conducted in the spring and fall of 2010 and included over 3,700 students (over 1,500 special education students and over 2,100 non-special education students). The field test included special education students with Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) who were categorized as having LD, SLI, ID, or D/HH.

      Four primary research questions are addressed in the report:

      1. Is the PARA accessible reading assessment more accessible than a proxy state reading assessment for students with LD, and for students with disabilities combined (LD, SLI, ID, and D/HH)?
      2. Are scores from the PARA accessible reading assessment more reliable than scores from the proxy state assessment for students with LD, and for students with disabilities combined (LD, SLI, ID, and D/HH)
      3. Is there evidence of the validity of scores from the accessible reading assessment?
      4. Does the PARA accessible reading assessment demonstrate the same characteristics (student performance, reliability, validity) for students in grades 4 and 8?
      Published: May 2012
    • NCEO Technical Reports: An Evaluation of the Extent to Which Teachers Used the "IEP Quality Tutorial-South Dakota" After Training (#63)
      Formats:

      A report discussing the use of the "IEP Quality Tutorial-South Dakota (IEPQ-SD)." During the 2010-2011 school year, the state of South Dakota piloted an online program called the "IEP Quality Tutorial-South Dakota (IEPQ-SD)". IEPQ-SD was designed to support the implementation of standards-based IEPs in schools throughout the state. Forty-nine educators in South Dakota participated in training on the IEPQ-SD tool, and they were then given access to the tool so that they could use it in their work with IEPs. This report presents the results of an evaluation of the extent to which teachers used IEPQ-SD after training, and their reactions to it. Interviews were conducted with five of the training participants approximately six months after the training session to learn about educator perceptions of the training, how their work with IEPs has been affected by the training, and how student experiences have been affected by the training. They were also asked what the educators liked about the training and what could be improved for future trainings, and if and how participants thought the IEPQ-SD tool should be rolled out to other educators in South Dakota.

      Published: April 2012
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Diploma Options, Graduation Requirements, and Exit Exams for Youth with Disabilities: 2011 National Study (#62)
      Formats:

      A report documenting results from the fifth in a series of similar studies on state graduation policies and diploma options conducted by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO). The present study was undertaken to update the status of graduation policies across the nation. It follows up on previous work, the last study having been conducted in 2006-2007. Three research questions served as the focus of this national study of high school graduation requirements and diploma options for students with and without disabilities: (1) What is the range and variation in state graduation requirements and diploma options across the United States for students with and without disabilities? (2) What are the intended and unintended consequences that result for students when they are required to pass exit exams to receive a high school diploma? And (3) What are the intended and unintended consequences of using single or multiple diploma options for students with disabilities? Results indicated some changes in graduation requirements and diploma options from the previous survey. Trends found include: (a) state and local graduation policies and assessment practices continue to be modified and revised on a regular basis, (b) graduation requirements are increasing in rigor across states, (c) states are continuing to experiment by making available a range of diploma options for students with and without disabilities, and (d) the participation of students with disabilities in high stakes exit exams is increasing and states are granting additional testing allowances and broader use of accommodations.

      Published: April 2012
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Characteristics of Low Performing Special Education and Non-Special Education Students on Large-Scale Assessments (#60)
      Formats:

      A report investigating whether the characteristics of the lowest performing students in special education differ from the characteristics of the lowest performing students who are not in special education. The investigation in this report used data from low performing students in four states: Alabama, Hawaii, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. Achievement data were disaggregated by three demographic characteristics (gender, race/ethnicity, and income status) for students taking the reading or mathematics assessments in fifth or eighth grade. In addition, researchers tracked data for each student over three years to identify how students moved in and out of the low performing category (low performing was defined as the tenth percentile and below for this report) across time.

      Published: March 2012
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2008-2009 APR Snapshot #1: State Assessment Participation and Performance of Special Education Students (#1)
      Formats:

      This year 2012 report summarizes the participation and performance of eighth grade students with disabilities, in reading and math assessments used for federal accountability in the 2008-2009 school year.

      Published: January 2012
    • Moving Your Numbers: Key Practices Guide
      Formats:

      A guide describing six essential practices for increasing achievement of students with disabilities and other at-risk learners as part of whole-district reform efforts. All six practices are described within the context of the district achievement profiles included in this publication. They are also organized for easier reference as a pull-out insert that provides suggestions for state education agency personnel, district and school personnel (including regional technical assistance providers), and parents/family members who might be interested in learning more about what questions to ask, or how to initiate and/or contribute to a conversation in their state, region, or district that supports all students to learn at higher levels.

      Published: 2012
    • Moving Your Numbers: State Education Agencies: The Critical Role of SEAs in Facilitating School District Capacity to Improve Learning and Achievement for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      A guide offering insights into the direction state education agencies should take to more effectively support districts and schools in improving outcomes for all students.

      Published: 2012
    • Moving Your Numbers: District Self-Assessment Guide for Moving Our Numbers: Using Assessment and Accountability to Increase Performance for Students with Disabilities as Part of District-Wide Improvement
      Formats:

      A guide for use by district leadership teams and school-level leadership teams in gauging the district's degree of implementation and scale of actions associated with effective practices identified in the Moving Your Numbers series.

      Published: 2012
    • Moving Your Numbers: Parent/Family Companion Guide: Using Assessment and Accountability to Increase Performance for Students with Disabilities as Part of District-wide Improvement
      Formats:

      A guide, based on the report Moving Your Numbers: Improving Learning for Students with Disabilities as Part of District-wide Reform, providing an in-depth examination of how five school districts with vastly different student populations increased the performance of students with disabilities. While the report was developed primarily for use by those working at the state, school district, and school levels, it provides powerful information that can be used by parents and families interested in working to improve the academic performance of students with disabilities. Because of the very specific requirements of the federal special education law, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), parents of students with disabilities engage with school personnel frequently via the formulation of their child's Individualized Education Programs and progress reports throughout the year. These parents are in a unique position to recognize, understand, and participate in key practices that improve learning. The findings presented in Moving Your Numbers can help pave the way for parents to become even more effective.

      Published: 2012
    • Moving Your Numbers: Higher Education Guide to Moving Your Numbers: Guide for Administrator Preparation Programs
      Formats:

      A guide connecting the report, Moving Your Numbers, to the curriculum of administrator preparation programs. It makes the connection by (1) showing how the booklet fits with curricula in such preparation programs (i.e., programs to prepare candidates for various administrative roles), (2) providing discussion questions based on the case studies presented in the booklet, (3) suggesting activities that draw on and extend the content of the case studies, and (4) presenting additional resource materials for exploring the essential educational practices that the booklet targets. Moving Your Numbers provides administrator preparation programs with real-world examples of districts in which a focus on the education of all children--including those with disabilities--guides educators' thinking and practice. These exemplar districts contrast with other districts in which low expectations about certain students' capabilities limit those students' opportunities for learning and eventually depress their academic achievement. Recent policy language characterizes this outcome as the achievement gap, and remedying achievement gaps has become a critical concern in many school districts.

      Published: 2012
    • Moving Your Numbers: Higher Education Guide to Moving Your Numbers: Guide for Teacher Preparation Programs
      Formats:

      A guide connecting the report, Moving Your Numbers, to the curriculum of teacher preparation programs. It makes the connection by (1) showing how the booklet fits with curricula in such preparation programs (i.e., programs to prepare candidates for various teaching roles), (2) providing discussion questions based on the case studies presented in the booklet, (3) suggesting activities that draw on and extend the content of the case studies, and (4) presenting additional resource materials for exploring the essential educational practices that the booklet targets. Moving Your Numbers provides teacher preparation programs with real-world examples of districts in which a focus on the education of all children--including those with disabilities--guides educators' thinking and practice. These exemplar districts contrast with other districts in which low expectations about certain students' capabilities limit those students' opportunities for learning and eventually depress their academic achievement. Recent policy language characterizes this outcome as the achievement gap, and remedying achievement gaps has become a critical concern in many school districts.

      Published: 2012
    • Moving Your Numbers: Regional/Intermediate Unit Providers: The Critical Role of Regional Providers in Facilitating School District Capacity to Improve Learning and Achievement for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      A guide, based on the Moving Your Numbers report, offering insights into the direction regional providers should take to more effectively support districts and schools in improving outcomes for all students.

      Published: 2012
    • Moving Your Numbers: A Synthesis of Lessons Learned: How Districts Used Assessment and Accountability to Increase Performance for Students with Disabilities as Part of District-wide Improvement
      Formats:

      A guide summarizing the lessons learned by school districts profiled in the Moving Your Numbers series. Moving Your Numbers features the work of ten districts with varying demographics that have used assessment and accountability as an impetus for positive change. In each case, districts used the increasing demand for accountability for all students and groups of students to change the conversation and practice across the district, "moving their numbers" in a positive direction for all children as a result. The stories of the ongoing journey of each district, while far from done, describe the actions of adults committed to improving their own practice as a way to support higher levels of learning for all children. While each district had its own framework or set of guiding core beliefs for organizing its work, each of them implemented a set of practices that was very similar. Evidence suggests that these six practices, when used in an aligned and coherent manner, are associated with higher student achievement:

      1. Use data well;
      2. Focus your goals;
      3. Select and implement shared instructional practices;
      4. Implement deeply;
      5. Monitor and provide feedback and support; and
      6. Inquire and learn

      The lessons learned from featured districts are presented in this synthesis guide across each of the practice areas delineated above.

      Published: 2012
    • Moving Your Numbers website
      Formats:

      A website presenting Moving Your Numbers, which provides examples of real districts -- from small rural communities to large urban centers -- that are positively affecting the performance of all children, including students with disabilities, through collective and focused actions of adults. While different in demographics, each of these districts has publicly committed to improving teaching and learning for every child through effective data use and changing the ways in which adults across the system work and learn together.

      Published: 2012
    • IVARED website
      Formats:

      A website presenting the Improving the Validity of Assessment Results for English Language Learners with Disabilities (IVARED) project, which aims to answer three questions:

      1. Who are English language learners with disabilities?

      2. How do they learn best?

      3. How can teachers most effectively support their learning?

      Published: 2012
    • NCEO Brief: Performance of Special Education Students: Implications for Common State Assessments (#5)
      Formats:

      A brief -- the fifth in a series for the Race to the Top Assessment Consortia -- presenting information on the performance of special education students, highlighting the range in performance of these students in the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) and SMARTER Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) Consortia states, as well as the nature of gaps between special education and non-special education students. Changes in the percentage of special education students proficient and above on state tests over time are also provided. This brief provides concluding thoughts about the performance of special education students and suggestions for steps that Consortia and states might take to look at their own data. This is one of a series of NCEO Briefs for the Race to the Top (RTTT) Assessment Consortia that address the opportunities, resources, and challenges facing cross-state collaborative assessment efforts as they include students with disabilities and English language learners.

      Published: January 2012
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Tennessee Special Education Teacher Survey: Training, Large-scale Testing, and TCAP-MAAS Administration (#61)
      Formats:

      A report explaining how Tennessee developed an Alternate Assessment based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards called the Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program-Modified Academic Achievement Standards (TCAP-MAAS), that was first administered in 2010. This report from the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) presents the results of a survey of Tennessee special education teachers regarding this assessment option. The authors sought to learn more about the teachers' perceptions of student experiences and outcomes with the TCAP-MAAS. They asked questions about how the teachers received training about this assessment, sought to measure the extent to which information about the new TCAP-MAAS had reached teachers across the state, and asked about accommodations selection and implementation for instruction and assessment. One section of the survey contained a knowledge quiz that was designed to assess teachers' knowledge of the TCAP-MAAS. The perceptions of teachers whose students took the TCAP-MAAS can provide insights into what is working well and where there were challenges.

      Published: January 2012
    • NCEO APR Snapshot Briefs: 2008-2009 APR Snapshot #2: Assessment Accommodations Use by Special Education Students (#2)
      Formats:

      This year 2012 report provides information on the number of students with disabilities using accommodations on statewide reading and math assessments used for federal accountability purposes. Using federally submitted data from the 2008-2009 school year, the authors present information on accommodations for reading and mathematics statewide assessments administered to grade 8 students (and grade 4 to show a comparison to grade 8 data).

      Published: January 2012
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Learning Progressions in K-8 Classrooms: How Progress Maps Can Influence Classroom Practice and Perceptions and Help Teachers Make More Informed Instructional Decisions in Support of Struggling Learners (#87)
      Formats:

      A report describing perceptions and practices of Hawaii teachers using progress maps (learning progressions) to inform their understanding of how struggling learners progress during the school year in language arts or mathematics. Participants included (K-8) elementary and middle school teachers from six Hawaii public schools. Each teacher selected five students in his or her classroom to document progress and collect work samples from at least two quarters during the 2010-2011 school year; several of these students were ones who might have been eligible for and participated in an Alternate Assessment based on Modified Achievement Standards (AA-MAS) if Hawaii had developed one. Multiple data collection tools and processes were developed for use in this project and are described in the report. Findings from the year-long effort addressed (a) teachers' reflections on practice (instruction, assessment, and instructional decisions), (b) teachers' perceptions on learners and learning pathways, (c) facilitated collaboration sessions), and (d) unanticipated activities. This report addresses each of those, as well as the implications of the project for professional development support.

      Published: January 2012
    • A Guide to Educational Acronyms: What's in the Alphabet Soup?
      Formats:

      A resource guide providing a glossary of the "alphabet soup" of educational acronyms. NCEO developed this "acronym handbook" as a resource to define, clarify, or remind anyone involved legislative and policy discussions of definitions of routine educational acronyms. This pocket guide will be a useful tool for participants, whether they are state legislators, teachers, parents, or others.

      Published: 2012
  • 2011 Publications

    • Moving Your Numbers: Moving Your Numbers: Five Districts Share How They Used Assessment and Accountability to Increase Performance for Students With Disabilities as Part of District-wide Improvement
      Formats:

      A report examining how school districts can increase the performance of students with disabilities and other at-risk learners as part of whole-district reform efforts. It includes case studies of featured districts that provide evidence that students with disabilities, like all other students, can learn at higher levels when adults focus their collective efforts on improving instructional practice, consistently implement core work across the district, and use assessment and accountability as a lever for ongoing system and student learning and improvement.

      Published: 2011
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Educating Struggling Learners: Reflections on Lessons Learned about Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment (#86)
      Formats:

      A report presenting a first-person account of someone on the front lines of school reform, specifically focusing on inclusive assessment practices as they influence curriculum, instruction, and assessment at the local and state levels. The author, Valerie Kurizaki, works within the Hawai'i State Department of Education to ensure systemic standards implementation that supports all students, especially struggling learners. Her story suggests many themes that are similar to those in districts around the country where systematic reform has improved outcomes for all students, including students with disabilities.

      Published: December 2011
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: Accommodations for State Reading Assessments: Policies Across the Nation
      Formats:

      A report summarizing accommodation policies for the content area of reading. Because of the increase in the use of computer-based assessments, the authors also examined whether reading assessment policies varied as a function of test format. Two research questions are addressed in this report: (1) What did state accommodation policies specify for individual accommodations on state reading assessments? And (2) Did different formats (computer vs. paper and pencil) have different accommodations policies for state reading assessments? This analysis of states' accommodation policies for their reading assessments indicates the importance of understanding the intended constructs to be assessed by the state reading assessment. Policies indicate that there are different perspectives on the constructs, and that further explication of the content to be assessed would be beneficial.

      Published: September 2011
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: 2009 State Policies on Assessment Participation and Accommodations for Students with Disabilities (#83)
      Formats:

      A report updating information on the state policies on assessment participation and accommodations that NCEO has been tracking and analyzing since 1992. NCEO last reported this information on these policies in 2008 (based on 2007 data). Policies from all 50 states and the District of Columbia are included in the report. In addition, current state accommodations policies were analyzed by grade and content area.

      Published: September 2011
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Characteristics of States' Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards in 2010-2011 (#85)
      Formats:

      A report tracking test design changes between the alternate assessment based on modified academic achievement standards (AA-MAS) and regular assessment, whether states' AA-MAS were computer-based, whether states with computer-based tests (CBTs) included tutorial and practice test opportunities, and whether states' documents included considerations for English Language Learners (ELLs) with disabilities. Federal regulations introduced AA-MAS as another assessment option for students with disabilities in 2007. Eligible students may be from any disability category, and they must be considered unlikely to achieve grade-level proficiency within the time period covered by their Individualized Education Program (IEP) and have IEP goals based on grade-level content standards. NCEO has been tracking the characteristics of states' AA-MAS since 2007. According to the 2009 NCEO update on test characteristics, 13 states had developed what they considered to be an AA-MAS, and three states (Texas, Kansas, and Louisiana) had received federal approval. The further study reported in this publication found 17 states that by the 2010-11 academic school year had developed, or were developing, what they considered to be an AA-MAS, and one additional state (North Carolina) had received federal approval.

      Published: September 2011
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Professional Development to Improve Accommodations Decisions - A Review of the Literature (#84)
      Formats:

      A report summarizing the research literature for both professional development on accommodations decision making, and traditional and high-quality online teacher professional development. NCEO conducted this literature review to prepare for the online training that the center is developing for Alabama's teacher professional development.

      Published: August 2011
    • NCEO Technical Reports: 2008-09 Publicly Reported Assessment Results for Students with Disabilities and ELLs with Disabilities (#59)
      Formats:

      A report analyzing the public reporting of assessment data for students with disabilities in K-12 schools in the United States; this is NCEO's 13th annual report on this subject. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) required states to disaggregate performance data at the state and district level. Although reporting practices for regular assessments have changed little for 2008-09 compared to the previous years, this year did mark the first time all 50 states reported disaggregated data for at least some state assessments in ESEA accountability systems. Although there were increased mean gaps between students with disabilities and regular students on regular assessments across all grades and content areas, the mean performance for students in both populations showed improvement in all grades and content areas. However, compared to students with disabilities, regular students showed larger mean gains compared to last year. Public reporting on English language learners (ELLs) with disabilities is also examined in this report.

      Published: August 2011
    • NCEO Brief: Understanding Subgroups in Common State Assessments: Special Education Students and ELLs (#4)
      Formats:

      A brief -- the fourth in a series for the Race to the Top Assessment Consortia -- presenting information on the characteristics of special education students, English Language Learners (ELLs), and ELLs with disabilities. It highlights the variability in these populations, variability that is multiplied when states are grouped in the Consortia. The brief provides several recommendations for the Consortia to help ensure that they understand the characteristics and variability that exist in their member states. These characteristics and variability should influence their assessment design choices, which in turn will support the validity of the assessment system for all subgroups.

      Published: July 2011
    • NCEO Brief: Participation Guidelines for New Assessments: Thinking Through Their Development (#3)
      Formats:

      A brief -- the third in a series for the Race to the Top Assessment Consortia -- addressing the need for the Consortia to develop shared assessment participation criteria for students with disabilities, English language learners (ELLs), and ELLs with disabilities. It presents information that shows the variability in member state assessment participation rates and criteria. This brief also identifies ways to address the perspectives underlying variability in participation rates and the questions that Consortia may need to ask as they develop their common participation criteria.

      Published: June 2011
    • NCEO Brief: Developing Common Accommodations Policies Discussion Points for Consortia (#2)
      Formats:

      A brief -- the second in a series for the Race to the Top Assessment Consortia -- addressing the need for the Consortia to develop shared accommodations policies. The publication presents information that shows the variability in use of accommodations and policies across the states within each Consortium. The brief identifies ways to address the different perspectives on accommodations that underlie this variability, and provides several questions for the Consortia to use as discussion points as they develop their common accommodations policies.

      Published: May 2011
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: States' Participation Guidelines for Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards (AA-MAS) in 2010 (#82)
      Formats:

      A report updating the information gathered by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) in previous reports. Since 2007, NCEO has annually compiled, analyzed, and summarized states' participation guidelines for the Alternate Assessment based on Alternate Achievement Standards (AA-MAS). The purpose of this report is to update the information gathered from previous reports. As of November 2010, 17 states - California, Connecticut, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia - had publicly available participation guidelines for an assessment the state considered to be an AA-MAS. As of February 2011, four states - Kansas, Louisiana, North Carolina, and Texas - had successfully completed the U.S. Department of Education's peer review process that determines whether the assessment fulfills the necessary requirements for the state to receive federal funds.

      Published: May 2011
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Participation and Performance Reporting for the Alternate Assessment Based on Modified Achievement Standards (AA-MAS) (#58)
      Formats:

      A report examining publicly-reported participation and performance data for the alternate assessment based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS). Analysis included all states publicly reporting AA-MAS data, regardless of whether they had received approval to use the results for Title I accountability calculations. Data were examined for school years 2006-07 through 2009-10. Because most states had not yet reported data for 2009-10, the authors focused most of the analyses on 2006-07 (six states with an AA-MAS), 2007-08 (eight states with an AA-MAS), and 2008-09 (eight states with an AA-MAS).

      Published: April 2011
    • NCEO Brief: Don't Forget Accommodations! Five Questions To Ask When Moving to Technology-based Assessments (#1)
      Formats:

      A brief -- the first in a series for the Race to the Top Assessment Consortia -- addressing the need to think carefully about accommodations when moving from paper-based assessments to technology-based assessments. It highlights questions to ask and introduces topics needing clarification by the Consortia. Among the topics are determining which embedded features are available and to whom, which embedded features are to be called accommodations, and which accommodations are still needed that cannot be embedded.

      Published: April 2011
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Public Reporting of 2007-2008 Assessment Information on Students with Disabilities: Progress on the Gap Front (#57)
      Formats:

      A report analyzing public reporting of disaggregated assessment data for elementary and secondary students with disabilities in the United States - the 12th annual report by NCEO to do so. Reporting disaggregated performance data at the state and district level to the public is required of states by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA); the 2007-2008 school year marks the ninth annual reporting period since this requirement was established, and the sixth reporting period since the 2001 reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). The public reporting of participation and performance for 2007-2008 assessments was fairly consistent with the reporting in 2006-2007. There continues to be a need for states to report clearly, to publicly report on accommodations use, and to strive to make the data that are reported accessible to those who seek them via public Web sites.

      Published: March 2011
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Who Are the Students Who May Qualify for an Alternate Assessment Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards (AA-MAS)? Focus Group Results (#79)
      Formats:

      A report summarizing the results of educator focus groups conducted by one state in a consortium dedicated to studying alternate assessments based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS) eligibility issues. In 2008 and 2009, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction held three focus groups to accomplish three specific goals: (1) To help educators become familiar with federal regulatory language about students eligible for the AA-MAS; (2) to familiarize educators with issues that must be considered when determining which students might qualify for the AA-MAS; and (3) to help educators identify strategies for improving instruction and assessment practices for struggling learners.

      Published: January 2011
    • Meeting the Needs of Special Education Students: Recommendations for the Race-to-the-Top Consortia and States
      Formats:

      A report identifying several actions for the Race to the Top assessment consortia to take to meet the needs of special education students. The actions are consistent with standards and principles for assessments, and reflect evolving research and development activities directed toward supporting better assessments for every student. The paper was authored by staff from the Institute's National Center on Educational Outcomes and produced in partnership with Arabella Advisors.

      Published: 2011
  • 2010 Publications

    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: Accessible Reading Assessments for Students with Disabilities: The Role of Cognitive, Grammatical, Lexical, and Textual/Visual Features
      Formats:

      A study examining the characteristics of reading test items that may differentially impede the performance of students with disabilities. By examining the relationship between select item features and performance, the study seeks to inform strategies for increasing the accessibility of reading assessments for individuals from this group. The results of this study can help the assessment community in two ways. First, by elaborating on some test accessibility features, this report may serve as a guideline for those who are involved in test development and the instruction and assessment of students with disabilities. Second, and more importantly, this report provides methodology for examining other features that may have a major impact on assessment outcomes for students with disabilities.

      Published: November 2010
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Accommodations: Results of a Survey of Alabama Special Education Teachers (#81)
      Formats:

      A report containing the findings from a survey of 2,336 special education teachers in the state of Alabama on making and implementing decisions about accommodations. A number of areas of strength were noted in the survey responses provided by this large sample of Alabama special education teachers. The special education teachers who responded to the survey demonstrated overall knowledge of accommodations use, despite the challenging items presented to them. Nevertheless, there is an evident need for professional development on making accommodations decisions and on implementing accommodations for instruction and assessment.

      Published: November 2010
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Characteristics of States' Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards in 2009-2010 (#80)
      Formats:

      A report tracking the characteristics of states' alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (AA-MAS) that the National Center on Educational Outcomes has been following since 2007. The current report found 13 states that by the 2009-10 school year had developed, or were developing, what they considered to be an AA-MAS, and two additional states (Kansas and Louisiana) had received federal approval. This study also tracked whether states' AA-MAS were computer-based and whether the states' documents included considerations for English language learners (ELLs) with disabilities. Four of the thirteen states had a computer-based test. Documents from six states suggested that the needs of ELL students participating in the AA-MAS were considered.

      Published: November 2010
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: Studying Less-Accurately Measured Students
      Formats:

      A report describing a small-scale study that closely examined a limited number of students to shed light on several questions. The study provided a preliminary look at the possibility of using teacher judgment in identifying students at most risk of being inaccurately measured by typical annual large-scale reading tests and examined some of the characteristics of such students. Findings from the study indicate that teacher judgment could be useful as one part of the procedure for identifying less-accurately measured students. The report includes anecdotal descriptions of students that suggest how various cognitive and affective factors such as slow processing and levels of engagement and anxiety, alone or in interaction, can distort the test performance of some students.

      Published: October 2010
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Computer-Based Testing: Practices and Considerations (#78)
      Formats:

      A report exploring the context of computer-based testing (CBT), current state computer-based tests, and considerations for students with disabilities, in part as follow-up to a similar exploration that occurred in the early 2000s when just a few states were beginning to develop and implement CBT for their state assessments. CBT has emerged as one of the recent "innovative" approaches to assessments most pursued by states. CBT is lauded as the answer to having cheaper and speedier test delivery for state and district-wide assessments. It is also seen by some as an avenue toward greater accessibility for students with disabilities. Nine considerations for states and districts are presented.

      Published: September 2010
    • NCEO Annual Performance Reports and State Performance Plans: 2007-2008 State Assessment Data
      Formats:

      A report summarizing the 2007-2008 state assessment information that was submitted by states in their Annual Performance Reports. States and other educational entities receiving Part B funding under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) submitted their Annual Performance Reports and Section 618 Table 6 data together to the U.S. Secretary of Education on or before February 2009. This report summarizes the 2007-2008 state assessment information that was submitted by states in their Annual Performance Reports. It contains information on large-scale assessment participation and performance data for the 2007-2008 school year.

      Published: August 2010
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Science Assessments for Students with Disabilities in School Year 2006-2007: What We Know about Participation, Performance, and Accommodations (#77)
      Formats:

      A report documenting the inclusion of students with disabilities in state science assessments in 2006-2007, the period just before the required implementation of statewide science assessments. The success of all students, including students with disabilities, on statewide assessments in mathematics and reading/English language arts has been examined closely, partly due to the role of these content areas in school accountability for the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) known as "No Child Left Behind" (NCLB). States also were expected to establish science content standards by 2005-2006, and to develop assessments in science by 2007-2008.

      Published: August 2010
    • NCEO State Surveys: 2009 Survey of States - Accomplishments and New Issues at the End of a Decade of Change
      Formats:

      A 2009 report providing a snapshot of the new initiatives, trends, accomplishments, and emerging issues during this important period of standards-based education reform as states document the academic achievement of students with disabilities. It summarizes the 12th survey of states by the Institute's National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO). Results are presented for all 50 states and 8 of the 11 federally-funded entities (unique states).

      Published: June 2010
    • Developing and Improving Modified Achievement Level Descriptors: Rationale, Procedures, and Tools
      Formats:

      A report providing a rationale, procedures, and tools to develop and continuously improve alternate assessments based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS) achievement level descriptors (ALDs). As states make decisions on whether and how to develop an AA-MAS, they will also be developing a defense of the choices they make. This paper proposes a process to guide state work so that stakeholders and policymakers can articulate, from the very beginning, the educational rationale for their choices and the implications of this rationale for the specific design choices they make related to their ALDs.

      Published: 2010
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Earning a High School Diploma through Alternative Routes (#76)
      Formats:

      A report based on a study examining the alternative routes to passing the high school exit exam that were available during the school year 2008-09 to students to earn a standard high school diploma. It examines alternative routes in the 26 states with active or soon-to-be active exit exams, and documents the alternative routes available for all students and those specifically for students with disabilities. Earning a standard diploma has increased in importance during the past several years. Not only is it a document that improves postschool outcomes, but it also has become a part of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) accountability system at the high school level--with the required graduation rate including only those students who have earned a regular/standard high school diploma or higher. Complicating matters in several states is the addition of an exit exam requirement to the traditional coursework requirements. The addition of a testing requirement to other requirements for earning a standard diploma is a challenge for students who do not perform well on assessments. Many, but not all, of these students have disabilities.

      Published: June 2010
    • What Have We Learned About Student Characteristics, Accommodations, and AA-MAS?
      Formats:

      The National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) and a consortium of five states joined together to form the Multi-state GSEG Toward a Defensible Alternate Assessment Based on Modified Achievement Standards (AA-MAS). This paper reports the results of one study conducted by this GSEG project. The purpose of this study was to learn more about the extent to which low performing students used accommodations.

      Published: April 2010
    • NCEO Technical Reports: A Summary of the Research on the Effects of Test Accommodations: 2007-2008 (#56)
      Formats:

      The use of accommodations for both instruction and assessment continues to be of great importance for students with disabilities. Numerous efforts are underway to ensure that students with disabilities participate meaningfully in more inclusive classrooms and large-scale assessments. Still, there is a need for greater understanding of the ways in which accommodations are selected and implemented during classroom instruction and assessments. The purpose of this report is to provide an update on the state of the research on testing accommodations, as well as to identify promising areas of research likely to contribute to understanding of current and emerging issues.

      Published: May 2010
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: Cognitive and Achievement Differences Between Students with Divergent Reading and Oral Comprehension Skills: Implications for Accessible Reading Assessment Research
      Formats:

      A study examining the question, "Are there any analysis of the Woodcock-Johnson III Battery (WJ III) data that might shed light on learner characteristics that differentiate students whose measured reading performance is below what might be considered their optimal/predicted reading performance?" The WJ III norm sample spans preschool through late adulthood and includes a diverse array of individually administered cognitive and achievement tests. Although the data set is not ideally designed for studying LAMR and MAMR (Less and More Accurately Measured Readers) effects, the results of an analysis of the WJ III data are potentially informative for research and development efforts focused on large-scale accessible reading assessment programs.

      Published: May 2010
    • Rethinking Assumptions about Alternate Assessment Based on Alternate Achievement Standards
      Formats:

      A report seeking to facilitate the process of rethinking assumptions about alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS). It presents common misperceptions, followed by the assumptions underlying them and a research response to those assumptions.

      Published: 2010
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: States' Participation Guidelines for Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards (AA-MAS) in 2009 (#75)
      Formats:

      A report updating information in previous National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) reports that, since 2007, have annually compiled, analyzed, and summarized states' participation guidelines for the Alternate Assessments based on Modified Achievement Standards (AA-MAS). As of October 2009, 14 states had publicly-available participation guidelines for an assessment they considered to be an AA-MAS. Results from this study suggest that states are continuing to develop or update their participation guidelines.

      Published: March 2010
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: States' Accommodations Policies for Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards (AA-MAS) in 2008-2009 (#74)
      Formats:

      A report presenting the results of an analysis of states' accommodations policies for the Alternate Assessment based on Modified Achievement Standards (AA-MAS), and compares these policies with the states' regular assessment accommodations policies. This is the first time that the Institute's National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) has published a report that is specifically focused on AA-MAS accommodations policies.

      Published: March 2010
    • NCEO Technical Reports: States Challenged to Meet Special Education Targets for Assessment Indicator (#55)
      Formats:

      All states are required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to submit Annual Performance Reports (APRs) to the federal government. The purpose of this report is to reflect the progress made, according to state APRs submitted in 2008, toward meeting targets for components of APR Indicator 3 on assessments administered in school year 2006-2007. An additional purpose is to present an analysis of improvement activities used by states to facilitate progress in their assessment systems.

      Published: February 2010
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: Examination of a Reading Pen as a Partial Auditory Accommodation for Reading Assessment
      Formats:

      A report evaluating the effectiveness of a reading pen as a Partial Auditory Accommodation for large scale reading assessments when the pen is used only to pronounce words on demand. Four research questions were addressed:

      1. To what extent does use of the reading pen on a standardized test of reading affect scores?
      2. To what extent is there a different effect for students with disabilities and students without disabilities?
      3. Regardless of disability status, to what extent does use of the reading pen affect the scores of students with adequate fluency?
      4. What are students' perceptions of the helpfulness of the reading pen?
      Published: February 2010
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Common Misperceptions and Research-Based Recommendations for Alternate Assessment Based on Alternate Achievement Standards (#73)
      Formats:

      A report exploring misperceptions about assessments and the students who are assessed using Alternate Assessments based on Alternate Achievement Standards (AA-AAS). The misperceptions have been encountered by the National Alternate Assessment Center (NAAC) and National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) in their collaborative work with states and educators on the AA-AAS. AA-AAS are designed so that students with the most significant cognitive disabilities can be included in large-scale accountability testing, and promote their access to the same interesting and challenging curriculum as their peers. This report explores common misperceptions related to three major themes: (a) the characteristics of students who participate in AA-AAS; (b) the content that should be taught and assessed by teachers; and (c) issues regarding the purpose and the validity of AA-AAS outcomes. For each misperception, it proposes research-based recommendations to address them, and refers to the recent literature on assessment, curriculum, and instruction for students with the most significant disabilities to support its analysis and recommendations.

      Published: February 2010
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Using Growth for Accountability - Considerations for Students with Disabilities (#21)
      Formats:

      A report providing considerations and recommendations on growth models for students with disabilities. The academic progress of students is an important indicator of educational success. For school accountability systems, using a growth model to report on a student's academic growth can be viewed as an addition to or a replacement for a status model. Status models compare the performance of a cohort of students in a grade one year with the performance of another cohort of students in the same grade the preceding year. Growth models typically track the achievement of individual students from year to year.

      Published: January 2010
    • The Characteristics of Low Performing Students on Large-Scale Assessments (NCEO Brief)
      Formats:

      A brief reporting the findings of a longitudinal analysis of three years of student-level demographic and performance data for four states: the 2004-05, 2005-06, and 2006-07 school years. Data sets were compiled for each state for students who were in grades 5 and 8 during the 2006-07 school year, and included student performance data on the regular Reading/English Language Arts (ELA) and Mathematics assessment. The goal of this analysis was to learn more about the characteristics of low performing students.

      Published: 2010
    • AA-AAS Bibliography Database
      Formats:

      An interactive database presenting a comprehensive bibliography of research-based publications on alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS), as well as work on standards-based instruction for students with significant cognitive disabilities.

      Published: 2010 - Present
  • 2009 Publications

    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Characteristics of States' Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards in 2008 (#72)
      Formats:

      A report describing an assessment option permitted by federal regulations that give states the flexibility to offer an alternate assessment based on modified academic achievement standards (AA-MAS). This assessment option is for a small group of students with disabilities who can make significant progress but may not reach grade-level proficiency within the time period covered by their Individualized Education Program. Students who participate in an AA-MAS must have access to grade-level content. States are not required to offer this option. This report compiles, analyzes, and summarizes states' participation guidelines for the AA-MAS.

      Published: September 2009
    • NARAP Reports: Accessibility Principles for Reading Assessments
      Formats:

      A report presenting evidence-based principles for making large scale assessments of reading proficiency more accessible for students who have disabilities that affect reading, while maintaining a high level of validity for all students taking the assessments. The National Accessible Reading Assessment Projects (NARAP), of which the Institute's Partnership for Accessible Reading Assessment is a member, have been conducting research to identify ways to increase the accessibility of reading assessments. This document is the culmination of one of NARAP's goals: to develop evidence-based principles for making large scale assessments of reading proficiency more accessible for students who have disabilities that affect reading, while maintaining a high level of validity for all students taking the assessments. Some of the principles clarify and underscore the importance of well-accepted and widely used practices in designing reading assessments. Other principles have been developed from theory to respond to the needs of specific groups of students. The principles are to be viewed as a whole, representing a coherent and integrated approach to accessibility. They provide a vision of accessible reading assessments. This document was written primarily for personnel in state assessment offices and for test developers of regular large scale reading assessments used for accountability purposes. Other audiences also may find the document to be of interest and useful for other types of assessments.

      Published: September 2009
    • Minnesota Manual of Accommodations for Students with Disabilities in Instruction and Assessment: A Guide to Selecting, Administering, and Evaluating the Use of Accommodations
      Formats:

      This manual presents a five-step process for Individualized Educational Program (IEP) teams, 504 Plan committees, general and special education teachers, administrators, and district level assessment staff to use in selecting, administering, and evaluating the effectiveness of the use of instructional and assessment accommodations by students with disabilities.

      Published: August 2009
    • Training Guide for Minnesota Manual of Accommodations for Students with Disabilities in Instruction and Assessment: A Guide to Selecting, Administering, and Evaluating the Use of Accommodations
      Formats:

      This training guide is designed as a companion to the Minnesota Manual of Accommodations for Students with Disabilities in Instruction and Assessment and the Procedures Manual for the Minnesota Assessments. Together, these documents serve to outline five key steps in making decisions about accommodations and to identify Minnesota's policies for the use of accommodations on state assessments.

      Published: August 2009
    • TARA Reports: Students with Visual Impairments and Assistive Technology: Results from a Cognitive Interview Study in Five States
      Formats:

      The purpose of this study was to better understand use of assistive technology in instruction and assessment by students with visual impairments. The aim was to gather information that would be relevant to the creation of a new large-scale assessment that addressed reading as an activity that involved the use of a variety of technologies. In order to adequately determine assistive technology (AT) use, students themselves were interviewed and observed.

      Published: August 2009
    • TARA Reports: Survey of Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments: Students Served and Their Access to State Assessments of Reading
      Formats:

      The purpose of this study was to determine the perceptions of teachers on a number of aspects related to reading. This survey targeted specifically teachers of students with visual impairments (TVIs).

      Published: August 2009
    • TARA Reports: Field-based Perspectives on Technology Assisted Reading Assessments: Results of an Interview Study with Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments (TVIs)
      Formats:

      The purpose of this study was to gather information to inform the design and development of a technology-assisted reading assessment for students with visual impairments or blindness.

      Published: August 2009
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Achieving Transparency in the Public Reporting of 2006-2007 Assessment Results (#53)
      Formats:

      A report summarizing States' reports on the participation and performance of students with disabilities by (a) submitting annual performance reports (APRs) to the U.S. Department of Education, and (b) publicly reporting state assessment data via their Web sites and other communication avenues. Both APRs and public reports provide important information, although the two may be slightly different in how the data are presented. This report analyzes the public reporting of disaggregated data for students with disabilities. It is the eleventh such report by NCEO, and this analysis, for school year 2006-2007, also marks the fifth data cycle since the passage of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) of 2001.

      Published: July 2009
    • NCEO Annual Performance Reports and State Performance Plans: 2006-2007 State Assessment Data
      Formats:

      A report summarizing the 2006-2007 state assessment information that was submitted by states in their Annual Performance Reports. States and other educational entities receiving Part B funding under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) submitted their Annual Performance Reports and Section 618 Table 6 data together to the U.S. Secretary of Education on or before February 2008. This report contains information on large-scale assessment participation and performance data for the 2006-2007 school year.

      Published: July 2009
    • Improving Accommodations Outcomes: Monitoring Instructional and Assessment Accommodations for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      A document presenting a five-step process for schools, districts, and states to use in monitoring accommodations for instruction and assessment. It was designed to be a companion to the "Council of Chief State School Officers' Accommodations Manual: How to Select, Administer, and Evaluate Use of Accommodations for Instruction and Assessment of Students with Disabilities" (2005), which applies to students with disabilities who participate in large-scale assessments and the instruction they receive. Each step provides monitoring questions to ask, current examples from states, samples of forms that might be used, a checklist for evaluating a state's activities for each step, and space for action planning and questions. Appendices contain a glossary of terms related to monitoring and sample forms that can be adapted for use.

      Published: 2009
    • NCEO Technical Reports: State Reports on the Participation and Performance of English Language Learners with Disabilities in 2006-2007 (#54)
      Formats:

      A report reviewing state reports on the participation and performance of English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities in 2006-2007. Previous data reports suggested that ELLs with disabilities tend to have a lower percentage of students scoring proficient than their English proficient peers on regular assessments. But in 2006-2007, ELLs with disabilities out-performed the total number of students taking alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards. This improvement surprised researchers, leading them to speculate on possible causes. However, not all states reported this data and, even among those that did, the number of students in these data is low, leading the researchers to urge caution in interpreting the practical significance of the differences in performance. On English language proficiency assessments, ELLs with disabilities usually scored lower than ELLs without disabilities on measures of reading, writing, listening, and speaking.

      Published: May 2009
    • NCEO Limited English Proficiency Projects Reports: Grade-Level Standards-Based Science Outcomes for English Language Learners and Language Minority Students - A Review of the Literature (#6)
      Formats:

      This year 2009 report presents findings from a review of a peer-reviewed literature on the topic of standards-based science outcomes for ELs, as well as a broader group of students who speak a language other than English at home.

      Published: April 2009
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: Disabilities and Reading: Understanding the Effects of Disabilities and Their Relationship to Reading Instruction and Assessment
      Formats:

      A report providing common ground on the issues surrounding reading and students with various disabilities to facilitate discussion of accessible reading assessment. The information in this report was obtained through a broad review of literature and Web sites of national agencies and organizations, along with input and feedback from professionals in the disability areas. It is not intended to be a comprehensive research review of disabilities or reading-related issues, but nevertheless should prove useful for understanding the effects of disabilities and their relationship to reading. Seven disabilities are discussed in the order of their prevalence: specific learning disabilities, speech or language impairments, intellectual disabilities, emotional/behavioral disabilities, autism, deaf or hard of hearing, and visual impairments. Although these disabilities do not comprise all of the possible disability categories or even the most common disabilities, they do represent those often considered most challenging for reading assessment. This report provides:

      1. An overview of the characteristics of students with each disability
      2. A description of common approaches to reading instruction for students with each disability
      3. Assessment approaches and issues that surround the assessment of reading for students with each disability.
      Published: March 2009
    • NCEO Data Viewer
      Formats:

      An interactive database allowing users to access data compiled by researchers at the Institute's National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) on students with disabilities in the U.S. educational system. Two major databases are currently available:

      • State policies on assessment participation and accommodations for students with disabilities.

      • Annual performance reports from states and other education entities receiving Part B funding under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

      Through the database users may create customized reports - including charts and maps - based on criteria they choose.

      Published: 2009 - Present
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: Exploring Factors that Affect the Accessibility of Reading Comprehension Assessments for Students with Disabilities: A Study of Segmented Text
      Formats:

      A document reporting on a study seeking to experimentally examine factors affecting accessibility of assessments for students with disabilities. This study focused on reading comprehension assessments since (1) reading is one of the primary areas of the NCLB Title I accountability requirements, and (2) reading is the underlying ability for understanding instruction and assessment in all other content areas. A randomized field trial study in which a reading comprehension assessment, designed to be potentially more accessible for students with disabilities, was administered to groups of students including students with disabilities. Three long reading comprehension passages from existing state assessments were broken down into more manageable segments with corresponding questions placed immediately after each segment. The results of the segmenting study indicated that:

      1. Segmenting did not affect reading performance of students without disabilities, suggesting that it does not compromise the validity of reading assessment
      2. Segmenting did not affect reading performance of students with disabilities
      3. The segmented version had a higher reliability for students with disabilities without affecting the reliability for students without disabilities
      4. No trends were observed for student motivation, general emotions, and moods with respect to segmented assessment in either disability or no disability groups.
      Published: January 2009
  • 2008 Publications

    • NCEO Technical Reports: Good News and Bad News in Disaggregated Subgroup Reporting to the Public on 2005-2006 Assessment Results (#52)
      Formats:

      A report analyzing the public reporting of disaggregated data for students with disabilities by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO). This analysis, which is the 10th done by NCEO, is for school year 2005/2006 and it marks the fourth data cycle from the passage of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) of 2001. On this tenth anniversary, NCEO presents both the good news and bad news for 2005/2006 reporting and summarizes other observed trends.

      Published: December 2008
    • NCEO Technical Reports: An Analysis of Accommodations Issues from the Standards and Assessments Peer Review (#51)
      Formats:

      A report commissioned by the Accommodations Monitoring Study Group of the Assessing Special Education Students State Collaborative on Assessment and Student Standards. It is the second in a three-part series providing information to states about the monitoring of accommodations to address the question of how states meet the NCLB requirement to routinely monitor the extent to which test accommodations are consistent with those provided during instruction, specifically for students with IEPs. This technical report provides a comprehensive analysis of the peer review guidance information and the methodology used in the research, as well as summarizing themes found across multiple peer reviews of state assessment systems. The first report in the series is Hints and Tips for Addressing Accommodations Issues for Peer Review.

      Published: December 2008
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Trends in the Participation and Performance of Students with Disabilities (#50)
      Formats:

      A report describing the first comprehensive analysis conducted by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) of trends in the public reporting of state assessment results for students with disabilities. The study followed NCEO's four analyses of public reporting since the federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. More states are reporting assessment data for students with disabilities disaggregated by grade level and content area. States have also improved their data collection systems that make this type of reporting possible but the number of states for which data were available across the four years was relatively small. Based on the states with data across years, average percentages of students with disabilities performing at the proficient or above level showed moderate increases across the four years for both reading and math in elementary and middle schools but not in high schools. Trend data also showed higher percentages of elementary school students demonstrating proficient or above performance in reading and math than their counterparts in middle and high school. Trends in the Participation and Performance of Students with Disabilities is a brief summary of this report.

      Published: December 2008
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: States' Participation Guidelines for Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards (AA-MAS) in 2008 (#71)
      Formats:

      A report describing an assessment option permitted by federal regulations that give states the flexibility to offer an alternate assessment based on modified academic achievement standards (AA-MAS). This assessment option is for a small group of students with disabilities who can make significant progress but may not reach grade-level proficiency within the time period covered by their Individualized Education Program. Students who participate in an AA-MAS must have access to grade-level content. States are not required to offer this option. This report compiles, analyzes, and summarizes states' participation guidelines for the AA-MAS.

      Published: December 2008
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: A Principled Approach to Accountability Assessments for Students with Disabilities (#70)
      Formats:

      A 2008 report updating the National Center on Educational Outcomes' (NCEO) report from 2001 that identified principles and characteristics underlying inclusive assessment and accountability systems. This report on a principled approach to accountability assessments for students with disabilities reflects what the center has learned during the past seven years. The principles provide a vision for an inclusive system of assessments used for system accountability. The report addresses state and district K-12 academic content assessments designed for system accountability and focuses on all students with disabilities, including targeted groups of students within this group (e.g., English Language Learners with disabilities). Multiple stakeholders share the common goal of improving educational outcomes for all students have reviewed and commented on the principles and characteristics presented here.

      Published: December 2008
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: 2007 State Policies on Assessment Participation and Accommodations for Students with Disabilities (#69)
      Formats:

      A 2008 report updating the National Center on Educational Outcomes' (NCEO) report from 2006 that tracked and analyzed state policies on assessment participation and accommodations since 1992. The purpose of the current analysis is to update information on these policies that was last reported by NCEO in 2006 (based on 2005 data). In this analysis, policies from all 50 states, plus 8 of the unique states, were reviewed. The current analysis of states' 2007 participation and accommodation policies found that state policies on participation and accommodation continue to evolve, and that they have become more detailed and specific than in previous years.

      Published: December 2008
    • Trends in the Participation and Performance of Students with Disabilities (NCEO Brief)
      Formats:

      A brief describing the results of an analysis of trends in the public reporting of state assessment results for students with disabilities. The analysis was conducted on a compilation of publicly reported assessment data gathered from state Web sites and personnel during the data collection for four previous analyses completed by the Institute's National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO). These data were supplemented with data obtained from current state education Web sites. This trend analysis covered the years 2001-02 to 2004-05, and examined both participation and performance. The goal of the analysis was to determine:

      1. Whether progress has been made by states in publicly reporting the participation and performance of students with disabilities on state assessments
      2. The nature of trends in the four years of participation and performance data for students with disabilities.

      This brief is based on the 2008 report, Technical Report 50: Trends in the Participation and Performance of Students with Disabilities, published by NCEO.

      Published: 2008
    • NCEO State Surveys: 2007 Survey of States - Activities, Changes, and Challenges for Special Education
      Formats:

      This year 2007 report summarizes a state survey given to all states addressing participation rates, use of accommodations, the number of students achieving grade level proficiency, and more.

      Published: October 2008
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Middle School Principals' Perspectives on Academic Standards-Based Instruction and Programming for English Language Learners with Disabilities (#22)
      Formats:

      A report from a study following up on the findings of earlier NCEO research on instructional services and leadership for English language learners (ELLs) with disabilities. This study looked at a group of principals of middle schools making adequate yearly progress with ELLS and students with disabilities, and addressed three issues: (1) services and programs offered for ELLs with disabilities, (2) sources of instructional strategy information specific to ELLs with disabilities, and (3) the principal's role in supporting teachers' use of instructional strategies for ELLs with disabilities.

      Published: September 2008
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Delphi Study of Instructional Strategies for English Language Learners with Disabilities: Recommendations from Educators Nationwide (#21)
      Formats:

      A report from NCEO's national research spanning seven years that has focused on identifying and validating instructional strategies for ELLs with disabilities. In recent work, educators from five states with large ELL populations and five states with small ELL populations generated sets of reading, mathematics, and science instructional strategies and weighted their importance in focus group-like settings using the Multi-Attribute Consensus Building method. The research described here is a confirmatory Delphi study of the strategies identified in an earlier study and is based on polling teachers about strategies identified in the earlier work.

      Published: September 2008
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Middle School Principals' Interpretation of State Policy and Guidance on Instructional Strategies for ELLs with Disabilities (#20)
      Formats:

      A report describing how principals of successful schools translated information to teachers on designing accessible standards-based instruction for ELLs with disabilities. The study aimed to highlight promising practices that might be studied further and to identify areas where principals may need additional support in providing instructional leadership for their teachers.

      Published: September 2008
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Reading, Mathematics, and Science Instructional Strategies for English Language Learners with Disabilities - Insights from Educators Nationwide (#19)
      Formats:

      A report studying instructional strategies at middle and junior high schools. Middle school teaching and learning is especially challenging, perhaps because the curriculum places greater cognitive demands on emerging adolescents at a developmental stage when students, especially those who have already been struggling, can be at higher risk for academic failure. ELLs with disabilities could be at particular risk, given the combination of learning challenges they may encounter in middle school. The study aimed to identify teacher-initiated instructional strategies that are preferred by practitioners who work daily with ELLs with disabilities.

      Published: September 2008
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: A Brief History of Alternate Assessments Based on Alternate Achievement Standards (#68)
      Formats:

      A 2008 report reviewing the previous 15 years of alternate assessment development, from the early 1990s through the mid-2000s, as reported by state directors of special education on the Institute's National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) state surveys, and augmented by other research and policy reports published by NCEO and related organizations during that timeframe. This is a resource for state and federal policymakers and staff, researchers, test companies, and the public and it helps explain the evolution of alternate assessment for students with significant cognitive disabilities.

      Published: September 2008
    • NCEO Annual Performance Reports and State Performance Plans: 2005-2006 State Assessment Data
      Formats:

      A report summarizing assessment data from State Performance Plans.

      Published: April 2008
  • 2007 Publications

    • NCEO Technical Reports: Revisiting Graduation Requirements and Diploma Options for Youth with Disabilities: A National Study (#49)
      Formats:

      A document reporting on National Center on Educational Outcomes' (NCEO) fourth study of state graduation requirements for students with disabilities. This national study was designed to describe current variations across states in high school exit exam practices and the use of alternative diploma/credentialing options. The study also examines the intended and unintended consequences for students when they are required to pass exit exams to receive a high school diploma, and the intended and unintended consequences of using single or multiple diploma options for students with disabilities.

      Published: December 2007
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: Examining DIF, DDF, and Omit Rate by Discrete Disability Categories
      Formats:

      A report describing a study of differential item functioning (DIF), differential distractor functioning (DDF), and differential omission frequency (DOF) for one third grade and one fifth grade statewide reading test for three disability groupings: students with speech/language impairments, learning disabilities, and emotional/behavioral disorders. The study found substantive DIF/DDF only for students with learning disabilities, not for students with speech/language impairments or emotional/behavioral disorders. Furthermore, examination of response characteristic curve graphs showed that DIF/DDF did not necessarily indicate an item had statistical bias against students with learning disabilities. Rather, low-performing students with learning disabilities more often than low-performing students without disabilities appeared to choose wrong answers randomly rather than selecting the most appealing wrong answers. The researchers concluded that there was no evidence of test bias for students with disabilities in the state reading tests examined in the study.

      Published: December 2007
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: States' Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Achievement Standards (AA-MAS) in 2007 (#67)
      Formats:

      This year 2007 report summarizes the publicly available information about alternates based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS). It describes the formats and eligibility criteria for five states with an AA-MAS, and further information on another state intending to administer one in the 2008-09 school year. It also describes how states' AA-MAS differ from states' regular assessments, including assessment characteristics and incorporated accommodations.

      Published: December 2007
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: English Language Learners with Disabilities in State English Language Proficiency Assessments: A Review of State Accommodation Policies (#66)
      Formats:

      This year 2007 report documents states' participation and accommodations policies for English learners (ELs) with disabilities on their English Language Proficiency (ELP) assessments for 2005-06. Findings show 31 states addressed accommodations for ELs with disabilities. Of these 31 states, 13 states allowed the exclusion of a student based on his or her disability characteristics for one or more domains of the ELP assessment. Other participation findings show exclusion based on severity of disability, such as for students needing to participate in an alternate assessment based on alternate achievement standards. Of the accommodation findings, the most controversial accommodation was spellchecker/ assistance /dictionary use. The authors note that continued attention to the participation and performance of ELLs with disabilities in ELP and other state assessments is essential.

      Published: December 2007
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Planning Alignment Studies For Alternate Assessments Based on Alternate Achievement Standards (#20)
      Formats:

      A report providing states with information on the components to consider with an external vendor when planning a study of the alignment of alternate assessment based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS) with grade-level content standards. It also addresses guidance for maximizing resources spent to determine alignment of the AA-AAS.

      Published: November 2007
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Aligning Alternate Assessments to Grade Level Content Standards - Issues and Considerations for Alternates Based on Alternate Achievement Standards (#19)
      Formats:

      This year 2007 report provides states with information on issues that complicate alignment of alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards. It also provides information on existing alignment models that can be used for alignment studies.

      Published: November 2007
    • Parent Training & Information Center Webinar on Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards
      Formats:
      • Parent Training & Information Center Webinar on Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards video

        Webinar video

      • Parent Training & Information Center Webinar on Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards handout

        Handout of slides

      A Webinar providing information about Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards (AA-MAS) to Parent Training and Information Centers & Community Parent Resource Centers. AA-MAS are assessments that some states use to evaluate the performance of a small group of students with disabilities. Most states offering AA-MAS had phased it out by 2014.

      Federal legislation requires that all students be included in accountability systems, but some students with disabilities need accommodations to access assessments. AA-MAS is an assessment option for some students with an Individualized Education Program (IEP) whose progress to date, in response to appropriate instruction, is unlikely to achieve grade-level proficiency within the school year covered by the IEP. Students who are assessed with this option are required to have instruction in grade-level content. Students qualifying for an AA-MAS may be from any disability category.

      Published: October 9, 2007
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Student Think-Aloud Reflections on Comprehensible and Readable Assessment Items: Perspectives on What Does and Does Not Make an Item Readable (#48)
      Formats:

      A document reporting on research related to large-scale assessments for students with learning disabilities in reading. The researchers examined the role of "readable and comprehensible" test items that could make assessments more universally designed, using think-aloud methods to better understand how interventions to improve readability affect student performance. Reducing word counts in items and making important words bold did not seem to affect student achievement but vocabulary did. Students had difficulty with non-construct vocabulary in both the stem and answer choices of items as well as with words that have negative prefixes (e.g., dis). This suggests that readability correlates with vocabulary and that construct and non-construct vocabulary must be clearly defined in order to make tests more accessible.

      Published: September 2007
    • NCEO Technical Reports: A Summary of the Research on the Effects of Test Accommodations: 2005-2006 (#47)
      Formats:

      This year 2007 report summarizes 32 research studies on testing accommodations published in 2005-2006. The report provides information on participants, specific disability characteristics, research design, findings, and limitations. The report also identifies promising areas of research, and makes recommendations.

      Published: August 2007
    • Learning Opportunities for Your Child Through Alternate Assessments: Alternate Assessments Based on Modified Academic Achievement Standards
      Formats:

      A guide helping parents of students with disabilities understand a new state alternate assessment allowable under No Child Left Behind. While few states are currently offering this assessment option, some will be developing it in the coming years. Parents will need to understand what it is and how to decide if it is the right option for their child.

      Published: 2007
    • NCEO Annual Performance Reports and State Performance Plans: 2004-2005 State Assessment Data
      Formats:

      A report summarizing assessment data from State Performance Plans.

      Published: June 2007
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: What Do State Reading Test Specifications Specify?
      Formats:

      A report examining state assessment blueprints or test specifications for state reading assessments. The No Child Left Behind Act requires all states to assess student reading, but each state is responsible for selecting what will be tested and how in its large-scale statewide assessments. As part of this process, states develop standards with which both instruction and assessments are expected to align. State standards for reading vary by definition and focus from state to state. The authors of this paper looked at:

      1. Themes related to the purposes and constructs of assessments
      2. How those themes related to state standards
      3. The number of items assigned to particular constructs
      4. The types of items typically found in statewide assessments
      Published: June 2007
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Nearing the Target in Disaggregated Subgroup Reporting to the Public on 2004-2005 Assessment Results (#46)
      Formats:

      This year 2007 report describes the public reporting of participation and performance data for students with disabilities published on state department of education web sites for the 2004-2005 school year. It describes the state assessment systems, how data were reported, and achievement gaps. It concludes with recommendations for public reporting.

      Published: April 2007
    • Hints and Tips for Addressing Accommodations Issues for Peer Review
      Formats:

      A report examining the key accommodations issues that have arisen for states in the recent federal standards and assessments peer review process. The report by the Institute's National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) was developed in collaboration with the Assessing Special Education Students (ASES) State Collaborative on Assessment and Student Standards (SCASS), and results from an analysis of peer review comments on accommodations. This publication highlights examples of assessment accommodations that were considered acceptable and unacceptable for peer review and includes NCEO recommendations for best practices with regard to assessment accommodations.

      Published: 2007
    • Educational Policy Reform Research Institute Reports: Profiles of Reform: Four States' Journeys to Implement Standards-Based Reform with Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      This year 2007 report is a synthesis of research conducted in four states and eight districts by the Educational Policy Reform Research Institute (EPRRI) to investigate and describe the impact of including students with disabilities in evolving state educational accountability systems.

      Published: March 2007
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Standards-Based Instructional Strategies for English Language Learners with Disabilities (#18)
      Formats:

      This year 2007 report describes the extent of information on instructional strategies provided for English learners with disabilities available to educators as a result of a review of state standards and supplementary instructional documents.

      Published: February 2007
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: Examining Differential Distractor Functioning in Reading Assessments for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      A report examining the incorrect response choices, or distractors, of students with disabilities in standardized reading assessments. Differential distractor functioning (DDF) analysis differs from differential item functioning (DIF) analysis, which treats all answers alike and examines all wrong answers against the correct answer. DDF analysis, in contrast, examines only the wrong answers. If different groups, such as students with disabilities and students without disabilities, preferred different incorrect responses to an item, then the item could mean something different to the different groups. The authors found items showing DDF for students with disabilities in grade 9, but not for grade 3. Results also suggest that items showing DDF were more likely to be located in the second half of the assessments rather than the first half. Additionally, results suggest that in items showing DDF, students with disabilities were less likely to choose the most common distractor than their non-disabled peers. Results of this study can shed light on potential factors affecting the accessibility of reading assessments for students with disabilities.

      Published: January 2007
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: Examining Differential Item Functioning in Reading Assessments for Students With Disabilities
      Formats:

      A report examining group differences between students with disabilities and students without disabilities using differential item functioning (DIF) analyses in a high-stakes reading assessment. Results indicated that for grade 9, many items exhibited DIF and these were more likely to be located in the second half of the assessment subscales. After accounting for reading ability, when compared to their non-disabled peers, students with disabilities consistently under-performed on items located in the second half relative to the items located in the first half. These results were seen in grade 9 for data from two different states, but these results were not seen for grade 3. This study has several limitations to the data. There was no access to information about the testing accommodations that students with disabilities might have received, and no information about the type of disabilities. Results of this study can shed light on potential factors affecting the accessibility of reading assessments for students with disabilities, in an ultimate effort to provide assessment tools that are conceptually and psychometrically sound for all students.

      Published: January 2007
  • 2006 Publications

    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Use of Chunking and Questioning Aloud to Improve the Reading Comprehension of English Language Learners with Disabilities (#17)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report provides details about a series of single-subject research studies examining how chunking and questioning aloud could be used to improve grade-level standards-based reading achievement of English learners with learning disabilities.

      Published: December 2006
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Math Strategy Instruction for Students with Disabilities who are Learning English (#16)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report describes a series of single-subject studies examining the effect of a teacher-directed "think aloud" instructional strategy in math with English learners with disabilities.

      Published: November 2006
    • NCEO Technical Reports: A Summary of Research on the Effects of Test Accommodations: 2002 through 2004 (#45)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report summarizes a review of 49 empirical research studies on test accommodations between 2002 and 2004. It also provides direction for designing future research on accommodations.

      Published: September 2006
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Using Systematic Item Selection Methods to Improve Universal Design of Assessments (#18)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report provides an overview of item selection methods for assessments and suggests that a combination of methods will optimize characteristics of universal design and produce better results. The report outlines strengths and weaknesses of each method, and makes the recommendation that all methods be employed systematically and in conjunction with each other.

      Published: September 2006
    • Educational Policy Reform Research Institute Reports: Topical Review Seven: Accountability for Students with Disabilities Who Receive Special Education: Characteristics of the Subgroup of Students with Disabilities (#7)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 topical review is one of two that synthesize a set of analyses and studies that have been conducted under the auspices of the Educational Policy Reform Research Institute (EPRRI). This report presents the quantitative analyses, and its purpose is to examine specific features of the subgroup of students with disabilities as they relate to the specific accountability requirements.

      Published: September 2006
    • A State Guide to the Development of Universally Designed Assessments
      Formats:

      A resource guide describing universal design for assessments -- an approach to educational assessment based on principles of accessibility for a wide variety of end users. Elements of universal design include inclusive test population; precisely defined constructs; accessible, non-biased items; tests that are amenable to accommodations; simple, clear and intuitive instructions and procedures; maximum readability and comprehensibility; and maximum legibility. The purpose of this guide is to provide states with strategies for designing tests from the very beginning, through conceptualization and item construction, field-testing, item reviews, statewide operationalization, and evaluation. The objective is to create tests that present an accurate measure of the knowledge and skills of the diverse population of students enrolled in today's public schools. This guide is accompanied by an online supplement, which can be accessed at http://www.nceo.info/UDmanual/.

      Published: 2006
    • Universal Design Online Manual
      Formats:

      A tool outlining steps that states can take to ensure universal design of assessments. The recommendations can be used for both computer and paper-based assessments. The authors recommend that states follow the steps provided in chronological order. Including any step in the design and review of tests may improve the design features of a state assessment. This online document is accompanied by a more detailed "How-To" manual (see "A State Guide to the Development of Universally Designed Assessments").

      Published: 2006
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Item-Level Effects of the Read-Aloud Accommodation for Students with Reading Disabilities (#65)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report examines data on accommodated and non-accommodated performances of students with specific reading disabilities on various math test items anticipated to be highly sensitive to accommodation effects. Analyses use three consecutive years of data from an elementary and middle school statewide assessment program. Findings show that within the fourth grade dataset, items classified as reading-hard (RH) and those classified as mathematically easy but difficult to read (ME/RH) were positively affected by the accommodation. Marginally significant findings were obtained for the ME/RH item set at the eighth grade level. The author notes limitations of the study, as well as implications for the findings.

      Published: September 2006
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: 2005 State Policies on Assessment Participation and Accommodations for Students with Disabilities (#64)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report analyzes states' participation and accommodation policies for students with disabilities for school year 2005. Key findings include (1) increased clarification for when accommodations can be used, (2) controversial accommodations continue to be read aloud questions, sign interpret questions and calculator use, (3) spell check appears to be more widely accepted than in the past, (4) that most states permit extended time with no restriction, and (5) that fewer states allow testing over multiple days. Also, most states now have user accessible policies on their web sites. Authors note the analysis was descriptive and there was no attempt to determine degree of compliance to federal requirements.

      Published: September 2006
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: A Comparison of IEP/504 Accommodations Under Classroom and Standardized Testing Conditions: A Preliminary Report on SEELS Data (#63)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report uses SEELS data to examine accommodation use across different education conditions, comparing IEP and 504 Plan accommodations to what students reportedly received in the classroom and on standardized tests. Findings show a lack of alignment in accommodation use among IEP/504 plans, classroom conditions, and state testing situations. Further, some variability is seen for students with different categorical labels. The author notes that continued monitoring of alignment should continue.

      Published: September 2006
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Using the Think Aloud Method (cognitive labs) to Evaluate Test Design for Students with Disabilities and English Language Learners (#44)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report describes research on think aloud methods used to detect design issues in large scale assessments. Students included in this study were students with learning disabilities, hearing impairments, cognitive disabilities, English learners, and students without disabilities proficient in English. Findings address the ability of specific student groups to participate in the think aloud procedure and the level of mathematics items with most informative data.

      Published: August 2006
    • NCLB e IDEA: Lo que los Padres de Estudiantes con Discapacidades Necesitan Saber y Hacer
      Formats:

      A Spanish translation of a guide informing parents of students with disabilities about the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). These are two of the nation's most important federal laws relating to public education. While NCLB seeks to improve the education of all children - especially children from low-income families - IDEA focuses on the individual child and seeks to ensure specialized services for children with disabilities so they may benefit from education. NCLB provisions apply to all students, including those whose disabilities require special education. So parents need to understand the requirements of NCLB. IDEA, in its latest update by Congress, has been more closely aligned with NCLB, making it equally important that parents know how the two laws work together to improve academic achievement of students with disabilities.

      Published: August 2006
    • NCLB and IDEA: What Parents of Students with Disabilities Need to Know and Do
      Formats:

      A guide informing parents of students with disabilities about the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). These are two of the nation's most important federal laws relating to public education. While NCLB seeks to improve the education of all children - especially children from low-income families - IDEA focuses on the individual child and seeks to ensure specialized services for children with disabilities so they may benefit from education. NCLB provisions apply to all students, including those whose disabilities require special education. So parents need to understand the requirements of NCLB. IDEA, in its latest update by Congress, has been more closely aligned with NCLB, making it equally important that parents know how the two laws work together to improve academic achievement of students with disabilities.

      Published: August 2006
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Large-Scale Assessments and English Language Learners with Disabilities - A Case Study of Participation, Performance, and Perceptions: "Walking the Talk!" (#15)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report describes issues that surround the inclusion of English learners in states' large-scale assessment systems with a focus on gathering practical information at the local school level to reflect a variety of perspectives.

      Published: August 2006
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: High Stakes Graduation Exams: The Intended and Unintended Consequences of Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests for Students with Disabilities (#62)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report examines the intended and unintended consequences of Minnesota's high stakes graduation exam on students with disabilities through focus group data and interviews. The study included focus groups included parents of students with disabilities, special educators from six schools in two large urban and suburban school districts, and member of the Minnesota Association of educational Assessment and Evaluation, and interviews from building administrators, school district representatives, and a state representative. Findings include a combination of positive and negative consequences such as increasing exposure to curriculum, increased participation in testing, raising expectations, high levels of anxiety and frustration, and drop-out concerns among other findings. The author concludes that further studies are needed to document empirically whether these consequences are occurring for students with disabilities.

      Published: August 2006
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Including English Language Learners with Disabilities in Large-Scale Assessments - A Case Study of Linguistically-Diverse Populations (#14)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report describes issues surrounding the inclusion of English learners with disabilities in states' large-scale assessment systems, with a focus on gathering information at the local school level to understand a variety of perspectives.

      Published: July 2006
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Effect of Minimum Cell Sizes and Confidence Interval Sizes for Special Education Subgroups on School-Level AYP Determinations (#61)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report focuses on the potential effects of minimum cell sizes and confidence interval sizes for students in Special Education subgroups on school-level AYP determinations. The report specifically considers these effects in a comparison of all students to the Special Education subgroup, in the inclusion of data for students in Special Education in such determinations, and the potential effects on AYP of adding grades 3-8 into calculations for the 2005-2006 school year. The report includes a study using data from five states to model confidence intervals and cell-size combinations and presents the results in answer to the research questions.

      Published: July 2006
    • NCEO Annual Performance Reports and State Performance Plans: 2003-2004 State Assessment Data
      Formats:

      A report summarizing assessment data from State Performance Plans.

      Published: June 2006
    • PARA Accessible Reading Assessment Reports: State Accommodations Policies: Implications for the Assessment of Reading
      Formats:

      A report presenting the results of an analysis of the accommodations that are included in state accommodations policies and guidelines. The purpose of the analysis was to learn more about 10 accommodations that may have specific implications for the assessment of reading: audio-video equipment, Braille, large print, proctor/scribe, read-aloud directions, read-aloud questions, repeat/re-read/clarify directions, sign interpret directions, sign interpret questions, and sign responses to sign language interpreter. Much controversy has surrounded the use of some accommodations on statewide assessments used for accountability purposes. This report examines the variation across states for this group of accommodations.

      Published: June 2006
    • How to Develop State Guidelines for Access Assistants: Scribes, Readers, and Sign Language Interpreters
      Formats:

      A manual offering states a tool to assist in the development or enhancement of guidelines for access assistants. Whether a state already has guidelines or is just in the process of establishing them, this manual will provide structure to the process and many examples of criteria already included by states.

      Published: 2006
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Dealing with Flexibility in Assessments for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities (#60)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report presents an analysis of where flexibility is allowed or controlled (standardized) in the development of alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards for students with significant cognitive disabilities. The authors identify key challenges in evaluating data and technical quality given the flexibility of this population's instructional goals. Further, they address specific points for policymakers and assessment leaders to consider regarding the degree of flexibility or standardization they might design into these alternate assessment systems, including clarifying state values and goals, research and development, assessment format, and evaluating technical quality.

      Published: June 2006
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Uneven Transparency: NCLB Tests Take Precedence in Public Assessment Reporting for Students with Disabilities (#43)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report describes the extent that states publicly reported assessment data for students with disabilities for 2003-2004. It describes the assessment systems of states, reporting practices for participation and performance, and achievement gap data. Recommendations for clear reporting are also provided.

      Published: March 2006
    • NARAP Reports: Defining Reading Proficiency for Accessible Large-Scale Assessments: Some Guiding Principles and Issues
      Formats:

      The National Accessible Reading Assessment Projects (NARAP) is a collaboration of two projects funded by the U.S. Department of Education to conduct research and development on accessible reading assessments for students with disabilities that affect reading. One of NARAP's first tasks was to develop a definition of "reading proficiency." This paper is a synthesis of the information collected and describes a set of principles and key unresolved issues described under each principle.

      Published: February 2006
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Online Survey on Instructional Strategies for English Language Learners with Disabilities (#13)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report describes an online survey about instructional strategies educators use with English learners with disabilities in reading, mathematics, and science at the middle school level.

      Published: January 2006
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Alternate Assessments Measured Against Grade-Level Achievement Standards: The Massachusetts "Competency Portfolio" (#59)
      Formats:

      This year 2006 report discusses Massachusett's alternate based on grade-level achievement standards. It describes the students who require these alternate assessments based on grade-level achievement standards (structured portfolio), and how such alternate assessments can reliably measure achievement in an equivalent manner to those students taking regular assessments for a grade level, and how the assessment may fulfill both system accountability and diploma purposes. The author also discusses how the model for a competency portfolio was developed and validated.

      Published: January 2006
  • 2005 Publications

    • Educational Policy Reform Research Institute Reports: Topical Review Eight: The Role of Accommodations in Educational Accountability Systems (#8)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 topical review addresses the use of accommodations for students with disabilities on state-wide tests and their implications for educational accountability systems.

      Published: December 2005
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Access Assistants for State Assessments: A Study of State Guidelines for Scribes, Readers, and Sign Language Interpreters (#58)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report describes a national study on state guidelines provided for human access assistants that help students who use either a scribe, reader or sign language interpreter accommodation on state assessments. Overall, 22 states had guidelines for one or more of the three access assistants that were the focus of the study. Variations across state guidelines extended from breadth and depth to format and ease of access. Further, 14 states with guidelines also had described the qualifications or characteristics required of these access assistants. The report concludes with a description of several challenges to the development of state guidelines for access assistants, and recommendations for meeting those challenges.

      Published: December 2005
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: One State's Story: Access and Alignment to the GRADE-LEVEL Content for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities (#57)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report presents a case study from the state of Massachusetts for providing students with significant cognitive disabilities with grade-level aligned content. It addresses opportunity to learn, and emphasizes the importance of working to get these students as close as possible to the grade-level standards that typical students are learning, as this is important for the student's education and is an important statement to make about the goal of special education. The author then describes how Massachusetts equips special educators with a conceptual standards roadmap of what is expected of all students, a process for customizing that curriculum for each student., and a method of data collection to document a student's progress learning targeted skills in the student's portfolio that gets used in the school, and later submitted to the state as an alternate assessment.

      Published: December 2005
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Considerations for the Development and Review of Universally Designed Assessments (#42)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report describes the development of a form for assessment designers to use to incorporate universal design considerations into assessments. It describes the Delphi validation process undertaken with the original design considerations of the Universal Design Project and includes commentary from assessment and content area experts. Several recommendations are provided on the use of the considerations at all stages of assessment development.

      Published: November 2005
    • NCEO State Surveys: 2005 State Special Education Outcomes - Steps Forward in a Decade of Change
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report summarizes a state survey given to all states addressing participation rates, use of accommodations, the number of students achieving grade level proficiency, and more.

      Published: November 2005
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: ELL Parent Perceptions on Instructional Strategies for their Children with Disabilities (#12)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report examines how parents were engaged to review and comment on the reading instruction of teachers working with English learners with disabilities from Latino, Hmong and Somali backgrounds.

      Published: November 2005
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Policymaker Perspectives on the Inclusion of English Language Learners with Disabilities in Statewide Assessments (#8)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report describes how state educational agencies are including English learners with disabilities in statewide assessments and supporting local education agencies in their communication of assessment results to families. The study involved telephone interviews with state department personnel in the areas of assessment, English learner programs, and special education in states with large and small populations of English learners.

      Published: August 2005
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Analyzing Results of Large-Scale Assessments to Ensure Universal Design (#41)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report illustrates one method for determining whether items on an assessment are functioning differentially for students with disabilities in comparison to their peers without disabilities. The report describes various statistical techniques used with a large statewide dataset for a mathematics assessment, and describes ways to compensate for lack of statistical power when looking at small group sizes. The report concludes that items can be flagged for review using differential functioning or other types of analysis.

      Published: July 2005
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Student Perceptions of Instructional Strategies - Voices of English Language Learners with Disabilities (#11)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report examines the input of English learners with disabilities on the instructional strategies identified by educators for teaching reading, math, and science. The context is grade-level standards-based instruction.

      Published: July 2005
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Confronting the Unique Challenges of Including English Language Learners with Disabilities in Statewide Assessments (#9)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report examines the challenges that state educational agencies face when including English learners with disabilities in statewide assessments and the solutions they have identified. The study involved telephone interviews with state department personnel in areas of assessment, English learner programs, and special education in 14 states.

      Published: June 2005
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: English Language Learners with Disabilities and Large-Scale Assessments - What the Literature Can Tell Us (#6)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report describes a review of literature pertaining to the inclusion of English learners with disabilities in states' large-scale assessment programs. It describes their participation in statewide testing for accountability purposes and reviews other literature pertaining to this population.

      Published: June 2005
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Graduation Exam Participation (2000-2001) of English Language Learners with Disabilities (#3)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report examines the participation and performance of English learners with disabilities taking the Minnesota Basic Standards Tests, needed for a high school diploma, in 2000-2001. The report describes both reading and math during the first attempt on the grade 8 administration.

      Published: June 2005
    • NCEO Annual Performance Reports and State Performance Plans: 2002-2003 State Assessment Data
      Formats:

      A report summarizing assessment data from State Performance Plans.

      Published: June 2005
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: 2003 State Policies on Assessment Participation and Accommodations for Students with Disabilities (#56)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report analyzes states' 2003 participation and accommodation policies. Authors found that these policies continue to become more detailed compared to previous years. Key findings from this analysis include: (1) Clarifications and specifications attached to specific accommodations in state policies--especially those with implications for resulting scores--are increasing, (2) States are providing guidance to readers, scribes, and sign language interpreters--as well as direction for IEP teams--on the process for using accommodations that are not on an approved list, (3), The number of states permitting the use of accommodations for all students is increasing, and (4) The most controversial accommodations continue to be read aloud (questions), calculator, spellchecker, and proctor/scribe. The authors note that the analysis did not attempt to determine the degree to which state policies complied with federal requirements under IDEA or NCLB.

      Published: June 2005
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Steady Progress: State Public Reporting Practices for Students with Disabilities After the First Year of NCLB (2002-2003) (#40)
      Formats:

      This 2005 report examines the extent to which states report to the public on the participation and performance of students with disabilities for year 2002-2003. It provides descriptions of state assessment systems, summarizes achievement gaps by content and grade level, and provides recommendations for clear reporting.

      Published: May 2005
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Graduation Exam Participation and Performance (1999-2000) of English Language Learners with Disabilities (#2)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report examines the participation and performance of English learners with disabilities on the Minnesota Basic Standards Test, used for graduation, in 1999-2000. The report presents results for this subgroup in reading and math in the initial test administration in grade 8.

      Published: May 2005
    • Educational Policy Reform Research Institute Reports: Topical Review Four: Emerging State-Level Themes: Strengths and Stressors in Educational Accountability Reform (#4)
      Formats:

      The purpose of this year 2005 topical review is to present the Educational Policy Reform Research Institute's (EPRRIʼs) state-level qualitative research findings.

      Published: May 2005
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Alternative Routes to the Standard Diploma (#54)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report investigated alternative routes that states provide for students, with or without disabilities, to get a high school diploma. The report studied 16 states that indicated previously in an NCEO survey that an alternate route was available to students. Of these 16 states, 10 had an alternative route for all students (including students with disabilities) as well as alternative routes just for students with disabilities. Three of the remaining six states had alternative routes for all students only, and three had alternative routes just for students with disabilities. Analysis includes state eligibility criteria, who initiates the alternate route request, who makes decisions, description of process, and the comparability of the alternate route to the standard route. A key finding in the comparability of alternate and standard routes was that 71% of the alternative routes for all students were judged comparable to the standard routes, whereas only 35% of the alternative routes for students with disabilities were judged to be comparable. Authors make several suggestions to states based on the analysis.

      Published: March 2005
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Beyond Subgroup Reporting - English Language Learners with Disabilities in 2002-2003 Online State Assessment Reports (#10)
      Formats:

      This year 2005 report describes the extent that states report participation and performance data for English learners with disabilities for state administered tests in 2002-2003 public assessment reports.

      Published: January 2005
  • 2004 Publications

    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Expectations for Students with Cognitive Disabilities: Is the Cup Half Empty or Half Full? Can the Cup Flow Over? (#55)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report addresses making informed decisions about the best instruction and assessments for students with cognitive disabilities. It includes an analysis of nationally representative cognitive and achievement data to illustrate the dangers of blanket assumptions about appropriate achievement expectations for individuals based on his or her cognitive ability or diagnostic label. Further, the report reviews research on achievement patterns of students with cognitive disabilities and the effects of teacher expectations.

      Published: December 2004
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: Educators' Opinions About Out-of-Level Testing: Moving Beyond Perceptions (#15)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report documents the pro and con arguments given on out-of-level testing using a survey with teachers and administrators. The report describes their perceptions and opinions about the use of out-of-level testing for students with disabilities in large-scale assessment programs used for accountability purposes.

      Published: September 2004
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: States' Procedures for Ensuring Out-of-Level Test Instrument Quality (#14)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report describes a study on how states ensure that out-of-level tests used in their states are of appropriate quality. The report draws on narrative data from technical information on states' large-scale assessment systems and interviews from state assessment directors or others with comparable knowledge about the state's large-scale assessment.

      Published: September 2004
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: Rapid Changes, Repeated Challenges: States' Out-of-Level Testing Policies for 2003-2004 (#13)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report summarizes a 2003-2004 state policy review of out-of-level testing, and compares these findings to a prior policy review on out-of-level testing conducted in 2000-2001. The first policy review in 2000-2001 included 12 states, and the updated review includes 17 states that allow out-of-level testing.

      Published: September 2004
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: Understanding Out-of-Level Testing in Local Schools: A Second Case Study of Policy Implementation and Effects (#12)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report presents findings of a second case study research project conducted to describe specific effects of testing students with disabilities out-of-level as well as teachers' and students' perceptions of these effects.

      Published: September 2004
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: Understanding Out-of-Level Testing in Local Schools: A First Case Study of Policy Implementation and Effects (#11)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report presents findings from a case study of large-scale assessment practices in a local educational agency. The research project was conducted to study specific effects of testing students with disabilities out-of-level and to describe teachers' and students' perceptions of these effects.

      Published: September 2004
    • Educational Policy Reform Research Institute Reports: Topical Review Six: Accountability for All: Results from a Study on Accountability Policies Affecting Students with Disabilities Educated in Special Schools and Settings (#6)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 topical review examines the current state of accountability policies that impact students with disabilities who are educated in special schools and settings.

      Published: September 2004
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: A Review of 50 States' Online Large-Scale Assessment Policies - Are English Language Learners with Disabilities Considered? (#5)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report provides an assessment policy review on the extent that the needs of English learners with disabilities are considered in public state assessment policy documents.

      Published: September 2004
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Almost There in Public Reporting of Assessment Results for Students with Disabilities (#39)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report examines the extent that states reported participation and performance data for students with disabilities in the 2001-2002 school year. The report describes state assessment systems, summarizes how states reported disaggregated data for students with disabilities by test, and presents achievement gap information by content area and grades 4, 8 and 10. Recommendations for clear reporting are provided.

      Published: August 2004
    • NCEO Limited English Proficiency Projects Reports: Connecting English Language Proficiency, Statewide Assessments, and Classroom Proficiency (#5)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report presents information on the link between academic language, language proficiency tests, and performance on standardized assessments for ELs in grades 3, 5 and 11. Measures in the study included two language proficiency measures, teacher ratings of classroom samples, and two state achievement tests.

      Published: August 2004
    • NCEO Limited English Proficiency Projects Reports: Relationships Between a Statewide Language Proficiency Test and Academic Achievement Assessments (#4)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report presents a study on Minnesota's English learner performance on the Test of Emerging Academic English in comparison to English learner and English fluent student reading performance on Minnesota's Comprehensive Assessment in grades 3 and 5, and the Basic Skills Tests in grade 8.

      Published: August 2004
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: Educator Perceptions of Instructional Strategies for Standards-based Education of English Language Learners with Disabilities (#7)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report presents a study conducted to determine the teacher-identified effective strategies for teaching grade-level reading/English language arts, mathematics, and science content to English learners with disabilities.

      Published: August 2004
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: 2000-2001 Participation and Performance of English Language Learners with Disabilities on Minnesota Standards-based Assessments (#4)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report analyzes the performance of English learners with disabilities on the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments in grades 3 and 5, which were used to track progress toward high academic content standards.

      Published: June 2004
    • NCEO English Language Learners (ELLs) with Disabilities Reports: 1999-2000 Participation and Performance of English Language Learners with Disabilities on Minnesota Standards-based Assessments (#1)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report examines the participation and performance of English learners with disabilities on the 1999-2000 Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments, in grades 3 and 5. Results are analyzed by language group (Hmong, Somali, and Spanish) and by disability category.

      Published: June 2004
    • NCEO Technical Reports: State Literacy Standards, Practice, and Testing: Exploring Accessibility (#38)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report reviews state reading standards, addresses alternative modes for student interaction with print, and analyzes the correspondence between reading standard requirements and the modes of interaction with print. It concludes by identifying implications for instruction, assessment and related issues. The authors consider this paper to be a first step in exploring how students can access print in order to more widely promote student access to standards, instruction and assessments.

      Published: May 2004
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Large-Scale Assessment and Accountability Systems: Positive Consequences for Students with Disabilities (#51)
      Formats:

      This 2004 report examines both empirical and anecdotal evidence for positive consequences of large-scale high-stakes assessments for students with disabilities. The analysis uses multiple methodologies to gather data on positive consequences: a qualitative media survey, an environmental scan of State Special Education Directors, a focus group, and a national survey on state assessment practices. Primary findings show these positive consequences for students with disabilities found consistently across all methodologies: increased participation of students with disabilities in testing programs, higher expectations and standards, improved instruction, and improved performance. Secondary findings found in fewer sources are as follows: improved assessments, improved diploma options, decreased dropout rates, and increased collaboration and communication between parents and special education and general education teachers. The authors discuss the limitations of the study, and address it as a starting point for further research. Overall, the findings suggest that large-scale high stakes assessments can have intended and unintended positive consequences for students with disabilities.

      Published: May 2004
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Progress Monitoring in an Inclusive Standards-Based Assessment and Accountability System (#53)
      Formats:

      This year 2004 report describes how progress monitoring--a set of techniques for assessing student performance on a regular and frequent basis--can be an essential and integral part of an inclusive standards-based assessment and accountability system This report discusses contextual challenges that affect its implementation for students with disabilities including: historical limited access to challenging curriculum, instruction, and assessment; concerns about the target of measurement (i.e., only basic skills or a full range of challenging content); and limited use of data for effective provision of instructional strategies, interventions, and supports. Further, the authors discuss the benefits and uses of progress monitoring methods and formative data sources in four general categories: (1) Curriculum-Based Measurement; (2) Classroom assessments (system or teacher-developed); (3) Adaptive assessments; and (4) Large-scale assessments used during the year to monitor growth of individual students and groups of students. Several recommendations for practice are also offered.

      Published: February 2004
  • 2003 Publications

    • NCEO Technical Reports: Improving Validity of Large-Scale Tests: Universal Design and Student Performance (#37)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report presents the theoretical background and research results of an experimental study conducted using universally designed assessment features. A sample of 231 sixth graders from underperforming schools participated in two versions of a large scale assessment in randomized order. Students took both the traditionally designed version, and a second version that measured the same constructs as the first but with features of Universal Design elements. Results showed significant increases in performance for students taking the universally designed form of the assessment, and this was confirmed by student perceptions in post-test interviews on their performance and preference for assessment format with the features. Findings have implications for students with disabilities and English Learners.

      Published: December 2003
    • NCEO State Surveys: 2003 State Special Education Outcomes - Marching On
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report summarizes findings of a survey given to all states that addresses new initiatives, trends, accomplishments, and emerging issues as states document the academic achievement of students with disabilities.

      Published: December 2003
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Rethinking Basic Assumptions of Test Development - Assessment Frameworks for Inclusive Accountability Tests (#17)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report discusses how to incorporate new assumptions about teaching and learning coming out of standards-based reform so that assessments can both meet the requirements of NCLB accountability and give better information about performance of students in prescribed content. This includes compatible classroom diagnostic assessments and clarification and articulation of content standards.

      Published: November 2003
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: Reporting Out-of-Level Test Scores: Are These Students Included in Accountability Programs? (#10)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report describes the extent to which scores for students with disabilities tested out-of-level were reported publicly in state accountability documents for the years 1999-2001. The report includes results of follow-up telephone calls with state personnel to clarify the results of the document review. The report concludes with three challenges to reporting out-of-level testing data.

      Published: October 2003
    • NCEO Technical Reports: A National Study on Graduation Requirements and Diploma Options for Youth with Disabilities (#36)
      Formats:

      This 2003 report updates the status of states' graduation requirements and diploma options for students with disabilities after the passage of the No Child Left Behind Act. This report also examines state perspectives on intended and unintended consequences of various graduation policies, including exit exams and multiple diploma options, for students with disabilities.

      Published: October 2003
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Putting it All Together - Including Students with Disabilities in Assessment and Accountability Systems (#16)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report provides an overview of key components of inclusive assessment and accountability systems and to highlight how they fit together to form a cohesive whole that facilitates the intended benefits of standards-based reform.

      Published: October 2003
    • Literature on Early Literacy Instruction in Four Languages (Chinese, Korean, Navajo, Russian)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report summarizes evidence-based research on teacher reading to Chinese, Korean, Navajo, and Russian children. The literature reviewed focuses on the linguistic background of several of the largest subgroups found in the K-12 English learner population nationwide.

      Published: October 2003
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Washington Alternate Assessment System Technical Report on Standard Setting for the 2002 Portfolio (#52)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report presents information on Washington's standard setting procedure for its portfolio alternate assessment for students with significant disabilities. It also gives information on the perception of the standard setting panel regarding the decisions that were made, thereby providing documentation and validation of the standard setting process to establish alternate academic achievement standards for this population.

      Published: October 2003
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: Testing Students with Disabilities Out of Level: State Prevalence and Performance Results (#9)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report describes the prevalence and performance results of students participating in out-of-level testing in 3 states of 14 invited to participate in the research study. Among study findings, were wide variability in percentage of students taking tests out-of-level, and at least in one state, larger numbers performing at high levels on below-level tests, suggesting a more difficult test should have been administered.

      Published: October 2003
    • Educational Policy Reform Research Institute Reports: Topical Review Five: Preparing Educators to Teach Students with Disabilities in an Era of Standards-based Reform and Accountability (#5)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 topical review addresses the knowledge and skills needed by teachers to effectively promote the achievement of students with disabilities within the current era of standards-based reform and accountability.

      Published: July 2003
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Measuring Academic Achievement of Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities: Building Understanding of Alternate Assessment Scoring Criteria (#50)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report, compares and contrasts the assumptions and values embedded in scoring criteria used in five states for their alternate assessments. It discusses how the selected states are addressed the challenge of defining successful outcomes for students with significant disabilities as reflected in state criteria for scoring alternate assessment responses or evidence and how these definitions of successful outcomes have been refined over time. The five states use different alternate assessment approaches, including portfolio assessment, performance assessment, IEP linked body of evidence, and traditional test formats. Findings showed a great deal of overlap across the alternate assessment approaches, as they tended to represent a continuum of approaches as opposed to discrete categories.

      Published: June 2003
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Going public: What 2000-2001 Reports Tell Us about the Performance of Students with Disabilities (#35)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report examines the extent to which states publicly reported information about students with disabilities in statewide assessments in 2000-2001. The report describes state assessment systems and examines published state department of education reports for participation and performance data disaggregated by students with disabilities. It also includes analyses of achievement gaps by content area for grades 4, 8 and 10. Recommendations on reporting are also provided.

      Published: April 2003
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Varied Opinions on How to Report Accommodated Test Scores: Findings Based on CTB/McGraw-Hill's Framework for Classifying Accommodations (#49)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report outlines the challenges of state education agencies determining the most appropriate way to report test scores of students receiving accommodations. These three ways are to (1) report all scores in the aggregate (i.e., do not differentiate between accommodated and non-accommodated test scores), (2) report accommodated scores separately, and (3) report accommodated scores both in the aggregate as well as separately. These approaches reflect different beliefs on how accommodations influence test scores, and the perceived need for future accommodations research. Survey results include perceptions held by people familiar with policy or research on the way in which test scores are influenced by accommodations and how scores obtained under accommodated conditions are to be treated in reporting. The results show that the extent of agreement about how accommodated scores should be treated depends on the accommodation. The study also shows how deep-seated beliefs lead some respondents to consider almost no accommodation as changing the construct, whereas other respondents consider almost all accommodations as influencing the construct being measured.

      Published: April 2003
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Using Computer-based Tests with Students with Disabilities (#15)
      Formats:

      This year 2003 report presents factors to consider in the design of computer-based testing for all students, including students with disabilities and English learners. It also provides a process for initial transformation of paper/pencil assessments to inclusive computer-based testing.

      Published: January 2003
  • 2002 Publications

    • NCEO Annual Performance Reports and State Performance Plans: Biennial Performance Reports: 2000-2001 State Assessment Data
      Formats:

      A report summarizing assessment data from State Performance Plans.

      Published: December 2002
    • NCEO Technical Reports: A Summary of Research on the Effects of Test Accommodations: 1999 through 2001 (#34)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report summarizes 46 empirical research studies on accommodations published between 1999 through 2001. The report describes the characteristics of the studies: purpose, type of assessment and content, participants, research design, findings, and limitations. Observations from the analysis are given with recommendations for future research, including considerations in assessment design and standardization (i.e., universal design) to reduce the need for accommodations.

      Published: December 2002
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Massachusetts: One State's Approach to Setting Performance Levels on the Alternate Assessment (#48)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report describes Massachusetts' approach to setting performance levels on its Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) Alternate Assessment. The state's portfolio approach was based on "expanded" state standards describing academic outcomes appropriate for students with significant disabilities. The report explains the technical phase of standard setting and describes the context of earlier conversations and theoretical debates that came before their decisions in the development process of the alternate assessment. The report further describes how performance levels were calibrated between the alternate and general assessments, due to the alternate being used for high school diploma requirements, and the ways performance levels in each strand were combined to produce an overall performance level.

      Published: November 2002
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Are We There Yet? Accountability for the Performance of Students with Disabilities (#33)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report identifies and describes state accountability systems to determine the degree that public documents clearly articulate whether students with disabilities are included in accountability calculations. Primary indicators addressed in state systems included student performance on statewide assessments, Performance growth, attendance rates, and dropout rates. The review found that only a handful of states clearly counted all students with disabilities in accountability determinations for schools.

      Published: November 2002
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: A Report of a Standard Setting Method for Alternate Assessments for Students with Significant Disabilities (#47)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report presents one state's use of the "body of work" approach toward standard setting to determine performance level cut scores for an alternate assessment developed for students with the most significant disabilities. It describes the rationale and design the state used in its portfolio assessment, followed by a detailed description of the standard setting process, including information on time and resource constraints, areas of potential contamination and bias in the approach, and the importance of range-finding and pin-pointing phases for this approach.

      Published: October 2002
    • Educational Policy Reform Research Institute Reports: Topical Review Two: High Stakes: Exit Documents and Students with Disabilities (#2)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 topical review examines the traditional role of the high school diploma in the current context of standards-based reform as it relates to students with diverse educational needs, and students with disabilities in particular.

      Published: October 2002
    • NCEO Limited English Proficiency Projects Reports: 1999-2000 Participation and Performance of English Language Learners Reported in Public State Documents and Web Sites (#3)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report summarizes data publicly reported on state education department websites on the participation rate and performance of English learners for 1999-2000.

      Published: September 2002
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: 2001 State Policies on Assessment Participation and Accommodations (#46)
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report analyzes state participation and accommodation policies nationwide. Among the major findings are: (1) participation options beyond the usual three (participation without accommodations, participation with accommodations, alternate assessment) have become more evident -- generally these are: partial participation, additional alternate assessments, and out-of-level testing, (2)"emotional anxiety" is more frequently noted as a reason for students to not participate in assessments, (3) policies for both participation and accommodations are becoming more specific, often indicating implications for how accommodated students' scores are reported, (4) the number of states that allow accommodations for specific groups (i.e., all students and students no longer on IEPs), and (5) that most controversial accommodations continue to be read aloud, calculator, and scribe. The analyses suggest that states continued to adjust their policies to ensure that students with disabilities have opportunities to participate in statewide assessments, and at the same time to understand the meaning of the scores from their assessments.

      Published: July 2002
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: A Follow-Up Web-Based Survey: Test and Measurement Expert Opinions on the Psychometric Properties of Out-of-Level Tests (#7)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report presents results of a survey conducted with researchers, academicians, and others with expertise in testing theory and large-scale assessment on the topic of out-of-level testing. The report summarizes both quantitative and qualitative analyses of the survey data. The report concludes by recommending further areas of research to guide the development of out-of-level testing policies and practices.

      Published: July 2002
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Access to Computer-Based Testing for Students with Disabilities (#45)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report recommends a five step process for the transformation of paper and pencil tests to computer-based tests based on an overview of the opportunities and challenges of computer-based testing and a presentation of research findings and accommodation considerations. This process assumes that the principles of universally designed assessments have been followed and include the following five steps: (1) assemble a group of experts to guide the transformation, (2) decide how each accommodation will be incorporated into the computer-based test, (3) Consider each accommodation or assessment feature in light of the constructs being tested, (4) consider the feasibility of incorporating the accommodation into the computer-based test, and (5) consider training implications for staff and students. Authors also make initial considerations for common accommodations within the categories of timing/scheduling, presentation, response, and setting.

      Published: June 2002
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Universal Design Applied to Large Scale Assessments (#44)
      Formats:

      The purpose of this report is to explore the development of universal design and to consider its application to large scale assessments. Building on universal design principles presented by the Center for Universal Design, seven elements of universally designed assessments are identified and described in report paper.

      Published: June 2002
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Universally Designed Assessments - Better Tests for Everyone! (#14)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report describes the principles of Universal Design and summarizes seven essential elements of universal design that apply to assessment development.

      Published: June 2002
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Including Alternate Assessment Results in Accountability Decisions (#13)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report addresses policy options for including the results of alternate assessments in school accountability systems and provides examples of approaches used in several states.

      Published: June 2002
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Use of Alternate Assessment Results in Reporting and Accountability Systems: Conditions for Use Based on Research and Practice (#43)
      Formats:

      This report reviews current (2002) understanding of the technical and policy considerations involved in high quality alternate assessment. Based on research from early implementation and what are considered to be best practice approaches, this synthesis describes five steps in alternate assessment test development processes that allow interpretation and use of results in reporting and accountability.

      Published: May 2002
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Setting Standards on Alternate Assessments (#42)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report identifies common standards-setting techniques and how they might be applied to alternate assessments. The techniques addressed are: reasoned judgment, contrasting groups, modified Angoff, bookmarking or item mapping, body of work, and judgmental policy capturing.

      Published: April 2002
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: Scale Score Comparability Across Two Levels of a Norm-Referenced Math Computation Test for Students with Learning Disabilities (#8)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report summarizes a small-scale comparability study with students with learning disabilities taking the MAT/7 norm-referenced math computation test on-grade and out-of-level. The report includes qualitative feedback from students on both assessment conditions, and addresses limitations of the study.

      Published: March 2002
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: Test and Measurement Expert Opinions: A Dialogue About Testing Students with Disabilities Out of Level in Large-Scale Assessments (#6)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 report summarizes the discussion of two focus groups composed of test and measurement experts held to address out-of-level testing. The report summarizes the concerns raised and concludes that studies are needed to determine the differential results of out-of-level test scores compared to on-grade level test scores.

      Published: March 2002
    • Educational Policy Reform Research Institute Reports: Topical Review One: Creating Performance Goals and Indicators in Special Education (#1)
      Formats:

      This year 2002 topical review addresses performance goals and indicators for special education. It is part of a series developed by the Educational Policy Reform Research Institute (EPRRI), which is investigating issues related to accountability and special education. This review looks at how to create valid and measurable indicators of key features of special education that can be used to gauge effectiveness as well as target improvement strategies.

      Published: January 2002
  • 2001 Publications

    • NCEO Technical Reports: On the Road to Accountability: Reporting Outcomes for Students with Disabilities (#32)
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report reviews state education documents for the year 1999-2000 to determine the public availability of important student outcome information on students with disabilities. The report describes state assessment systems, the reporting of participation and performance results, and the achievement gaps between students with disabilities and the total population for reading and math at select grades. It concludes with recommendations for public reporting.

      Published: December 2001
    • NCEO Classroom-Based Assessment Project: Using a Curriculum-Based Instructional Management System to Enhance Math Achievement in Urban Schools
      Formats:

      A report from NCEO's Classroom-Based Assessment Project.

      Published: December 2001
    • Educational Policy Reform Research Institute Reports: Topical Review Three: Reporting on the State Assessment Performance of Students with Disabilities (#3)
      Formats:

      The purpose of this year 2001 topical review is to provide a comprehensive account of reporting the performance of students with disabilities on state assessments.

      Published: December 2001
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Empirical Support for Accommodations Most Often Allowed in State Policy (#41)
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report is a compilation of information collected from NCEO's searchable database on the accommodations that are most often allowed in state policies: Braille editions, computer/machine response, dictate response to scribe, extended time, interpreter for instructions, large print edition, mark answers in test booklet, read aloud, test direction clarifications, and test breaks. The summary of research reveals that there are not yet simple or conclusive answers to questions about the effects of specific accommodations.

      Published: November 2001
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Principles and Characteristics of Inclusive Assessment and Accountability Systems (#40)
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report presents six core principles of inclusive assessment and accountability systems with a brief rationale and specific characteristics that reflect each principle. These principles are based on a decade of NCEO's documentation of assessment and accountability systems and on review and comment from multiple stakeholders who share a common goal of improving outcomes for all students.

      Published: November 2001
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Read-Aloud Accommodations: Effects on Multiple-Choice Reading and Math Items (#31)
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report examines the effect of a read aloud accommodation on the state reading and math assessments used by the Missouri assessment program. The study used extant test administration data for multiple-choice math and reading test items administered to 3rd and 4th grade students. Four student groups were created to help control for confounding effects. A differential item function (DIF) analysis was run on the data using BILOG-MG, which compared item difficulty estimates across several groups simultaneously. The findings lead to a discussion of how to determine who should benefit from an accommodation, and whether a reading test measures the reading construct differently for students with a reading disability than for students without disabilities. The report recommends further research and suggests that replicating the study is needed to confirm the results.

      Published: September 2001
    • NCEO Limited English Proficiency Projects Reports: State and District Assessments as an Avenue to Equity and Excellence for English Language Learners with Disabilities (#2)
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report summarizes data publicly reported on state education department websites on the participation rate and performance of English learners for 1999-2000.

      Published: September 2001
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Models for Reporting the Results of Alternate Assessments Within State Accountability Systems (#39)
      Formats:

      A report summarizing six models for reporting the scores of students with disabilities participating in alternate assessments that existed in the year 2001. Reporting the scores of students with disabilities participating in alternate assessments raises a number of challenges, including those surrounding concerns about statistical soundness, as well as those related to the different purposes and focuses that characterize current alternate assessments. At the time of this report, across the nation, states had reached different decisions about how to report the results of their alternate assessments.

      Published: September 2001
    • NCEO Technical Reports: What Databases Tell Us about Differential Levels of Use and How to Document the Use of Accommodations (#30)
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report presents an analysis of accommodation use data from 12 states. Findings include extremely variable rates in accommodation use, use patterns by level of schooling, and concerns about data accuracy drawn from how states record accommodation use. Further, states report accommodated student data in unique ways making comparisons difficult.

      Published: August 2001
    • NCEO State Surveys: 2001 State Special Education Outcomes - A Report on State Activities at the Beginning of a New Decade
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report summarizes a survey given to all states that addresses participation and performance of students with disabilities in statewide assessments and the first year of administering alternate assessments and including the results in accountability systems. The report is intended to help states view their own progress.

      Published: June 2001
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: States' Out-of-Level Testing Policies (#4)
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report discusses the context of state assessments systems, including accountability practices in which out-of-level testing is implemented, and describes specific out-of-level testing policies used in those states that allow students to be tested out of level in large-scale assessments. The review includes 12 states' policies and describes such state-level policy features as assessment instrument characteristics, required implementation practices, and test score uses.

      Published: June 2001
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Addressing Standards and Assessments on the IEP (#38)
      Formats:

      The purpose of this year 2001 study was to examine state Individualized Education Program (IEP) forms to determine the extent to which they include documentation of standards and assessments. All 50 states were asked to send their IEP forms and to indicate whether they were required, recommended, or simply sample forms. Because IEP forms are a primary source of information to guide decisions during IEP team meetings, the way in which information appears on them is very important. NCEO makes several recommendations for IEP forms that will provide decision-making guidance to IEP teams.

      Published: April 2001
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Recommendations for Addressing Standards and Assessments on State and District IEP Forms (#12)
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report provides specific recommendations for how to make IEPs reflect goals and services that support students with disabilities in learning toward high educational standards. The report provides background on IEPs before IDEA 1997 and changes since that time. Recommendations address topics such as adding alternate assessments to IEP forms, including implications of assessment decisions, offering statewide training on standards-based IEPs and assessment options in easily accessed locations, and clearly labeling IEPs so districts know what information is required or recommended.

      Published: March 2001
    • NCEO Limited English Proficiency Projects Reports: The Effects of a Simplified English Language Dictionary on a Reading Test (#1)
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report presents a study that examined whether using a monolingual simplified English dictionary as an accommodation on a reading test with Hmong language background English learners improved test performance.

      Published: March 2001
    • NCEO Classroom-Based Assessment Project: Enhancing the Learning of English Language Learners: Consultation and a Curriculum Based Monitoring System
      Formats:

      A report from NCEO's Classroom-Based Assessment Project.

      Published: March 2001
    • NCEO Classroom-Based Assessment Project: Effects of Using a Curriculum-Based Monitoring System on the Classroom Instructional Environment and Math Achievement
      Formats:

      A report from NCEO's Classroom-Based Assessment Project.

      Published: March 2001
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: Testing Students Out of Level in Large-Scale Assessments: What States Perceive and Believe (#5)
      Formats:

      This year 2001 report describes a study conducted to address the differing opinions, perceptions, and practices involved in testing students out of level in large-scale assessment programs. It focuses on state- level perspectives among those 12 states that allow testing of students with disabilities out-of-level.

      Published: March 2001
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Students with Disabilities in Standards-Based Assessment and Accountability Systems: Emerging Issues, Strategies, and Recommendations (#37)
      Formats:

      A report that addresses emerging issues affecting students with disabilities in standards-based assessment and accountability systems, as of the year 2001. Challenges and possible strategies for addressing the challenges are provided as identified by researchers, policymakers, and practitioners, based on a model developed by the National Center on Educational Outcomes, "Issues Related to Students with Disabilities in Assessment and Accountability Systems." The strategies presented here are concrete approaches to address challenges policymakers and practitioners are seeing in early implementation of inclusive assessment and accountability systems. All of these strategies have potential to increase the positive consequences and minimize the negative consequences of school reform for students with disabilities.

      Published: February 2001
    • Crosswalk of Title I and IDEA Assessment and Accountability Provisions for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      This year 2001 Crosswalk of Title I and IDEA Assessment and Accountability Provisions for Students with Disabilities is a resource to help State and district staff understand these complementary laws and related guidance and regulations, specifically as they refer to students with disabilities in assessment and accountability systems. This "Crosswalk" was developed based on the 1994 reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) known as Improving America's Schools Act and the 1997 reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

      Published: February 2001
  • 2000 Publications

    • NCEO Technical Reports: Effects of a Reading Accommodation on the Validity of a Reading Test (#28)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report examines the effect of a read aloud accommodation on the performance of students on a reading comprehension test. Thirty-two students from general education and special education were administered two equivalent forms of the California Achievement Tests (CAT/5) Comprehension survey. One of the groups took a form with the read aloud accommodation. There were no significant effects by student status found, except for a moderate positive effect size for students with disabilities. Information on student preference of the read aloud accommodation by student status are also presented.

      Published: December 2000
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Assessment Accommodations Research: Considerations for Design and Analysis (#26)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report provides an overview of considerations for designing and analyzing research on assessment accommodations. It explains several group and single subject research designs as well as general analytic strategies such as item response theory, factor analysis, and criteria-related analysis. The report also provides a few recommendations for conducting research on accommodations.

      Published: December 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Student Perspectives on the Use of Accommodations on Large-scale Assessments (#35)
      Formats:

      A report from the past Minnesota Assessment Project, a federally funded effort awarded to the Minnesota Department of Children, Families and Learning from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Research and Improvement. The project's goal was to promote and evaluate the participation of students with limited English proficiency and students with disabilities in Minnesota's Graduation Standards.

      Published: December 2000
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Accountability Systems and Counting Students with Disabilities (#29)
      Formats:

      A report examining the extent to which students with disabilities were included in accountability systems of states in which there were high stakes for educational systems. This was the first such report by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO). A search was conducted of states' education Web sites and direct links to their Web sites, examining the indicators on which states collected information (e.g., student indicators, staff indicators, program indicators, and use of resources indicators) as well as the consequences provided by the states (e.g., rewards, assistance, or sanctions).

      Published: December 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Effect of a Multiple Day Test Accommodation on the Performance of Special Education Students (#34)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report presents a study on the effect of allowing students with disabilities to take a reading test over multiple days versus taking the test within one day.

      Published: December 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Initial Perceptions of English as a Second Language Educators on Including Students with Limited English Proficiency in Minnesota's High Standards (#33)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report presents a study investigating the perceptions, beliefs, and expectations of English as a Second Language educators working towards including English learners in Minnesota's High Standards.

      Published: December 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Minnesota's Comprehensive Assessments: 1998 and 1999 Participation and Performance of Students with Disabilities (#32)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report analyzes the participation and performance of students with disabilities on the initial administration of Minnesota's Comprehensive Assessments in math and reading for grades three and five.

      Published: December 2000
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: Test Publishers' Views on Out-of-Level Testing (#3)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report describes a study conducted with test publishing companies on their views on out-of-level testing that included interviews, "in-house" publications, catalogs, and technical manuals furnished by the companies.

      Published: November 2000
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Interpreting Trends in the Performance of Special Education Students (#27)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report examines the effect that transitions between regular education and special education across grades had on performance trends for the special education population. It also looks at the effect that changes in exemption rates for students with disabilities had on performance trends. It was found that the reduction in exemption rates from testing as well as the departure of highest achieving special education students returning to general education both contributed to an increase in the performance gap over time. Further, when the same group of special education students were tracked over time, this gap decreased slightly. Findings have significant implications for states in the reporting of disaggregated data on students with disabilities, particularly in tracking performance across time. Recommendations are provided.

      Published: October 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: 1999 Report on the Participation and Performance of Limited English Proficient Students on Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests (#30)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report builds on previous reports examining the participation and performance rates of LEP eighth grade students on Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests. This report covers the testing years of 996-99.

      Published: August 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Bilingual Accommodations for Limited English Proficient Students on Statewide Reading Tests: Phase 2 (#31)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report examines a bilingual side-by-side test form accommodation for Spanish language background English learners taking a reading test. The side-by-side form was presented aurally in the native language on a cassette tape.

      Published: August 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Data on LEP students in State Education Reports (#26)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report examines the extent that states publicly reported participation and performance data for English learners for school year 1997-1998.

      Published: August 2000
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: How Out-of-Level Testing Affects the Psychometric Quality of Test Scores (#2)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report presents a review and analysis of the psychometric literature on the topic of out-of-level testing. It addresses concerns about the research that has been conducted and identifies additional research needs.

      Published: August 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Initial Perceptions of Educators as They Work Toward Including Students with Disabilities in Minnesota's High Standards (#25)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report examines educator perceptions on including students with disabilities in Minnesota's High Standards. Educators across all grade levels were included within a large suburban school district.

      Published: July 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: 1999 Report on the Participation and Performance of Students with Disabilities on Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests (#29)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report examines the participation and performance of students with disabilities on the Basic Standards Tests since the first statewide administration in 1996, across grades 8 through 11.

      Published: July 2000
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Appeals Processes for Students Who Fail Graduation Exams: How Do They Apply to Students with Disabilities? (#36)
      Formats:

      A report of findings about high stakes tests for students with disabilities, as of the year 2000, and the appeals processes for those who need an alternative way of demonstrating skills. High stakes tests that determine whether students earn a standard high school diploma are on the rise. They are viewed as the way to make sure that students meet high standards and graduate with the skills needed to be successful employees. At the same time that more and more states are investing in graduation exams, there are concerns about students who have met high standards, yet are unable to pass a test. To determine the extent to which there are other options for demonstrating skills, and to check the availability of these to students with disabilities, the authors studied state Web sites for information on appeals processes and the availability of waivers. They found only six states with appeals processes, and these varied considerably from locally set procedures to relatively specific requirements. In one state, the appeals process is viewed as the avenue for students with disabilities to have access to accommodations. In most states, there is no evidence that students with disabilities have been considered. Further, states do not have data on the number of students involved in appeals processes, much less disaggregated for students with disabilities. The difficulty they experienced in finding information about an appeals process is certainly encountered by students and families whose lives are affected by graduation exams. Without appeals processes, or easily found information on such processes, the likelihood that lawsuits will be viewed as the only avenue for recourse is dramatically increased.

      Published: July 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Factors Related to the Performance of LEP Students on Basic Standards Tests (#27)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report summarizes factors related to the performance of students from non-English language backgrounds in Minnesota state assessments in school years 1996 through 1998.

      Published: July 2000
    • Alternate Assessment Forum: Connecting into a Whole
      Formats:

      A report summarizing the discussion sessions during the Third Annual Alternate Assessment Forum held in 2000. One hundred thirty-five representatives from 39 states plus American Samoa participated in a forum on June 23-24, 2000 in Salt Lake City, Utah to discuss alternate assessment. Representatives were primarily state department of education staff, but also included some local or regional education staff, university staff, parents, and test publisher staff, all of whom have played major roles in helping states develop their alternate assessment systems. The forum, a third annual pre-session to the CCSSO National Large Scale Assessment Conference, was co-sponsored by the Regional Resource and Federal Centers (RRFCs), the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), the National Association of State Directors of Special Education (NASDSE), and the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO).

      Published: 2000
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Social Promotion and Students with Disabilities: Issues and Challenges in Developing State Policies (#34)
      Formats:

      This 2000 policy study looks at existing and emerging state policies on social promotion to determine the extent to which students with disabilities are included or excluded. Results reflect the status of state policies at one point in time, as determined from publicly available state documents and statutes. The review is meant to contribute to thoughtful policy development and stimulate consideration of issues associated with high stakes testing to assess accountability for students with and without disabilities.

      Published: June 2000
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: State Alternate Assessments: Status as IDEA Alternate Assessment Requirements Take Effect (#35)
      Formats:

      A report describing the approaches states were taking, as of the year 2000, to alternate assessments for the small number of students with disabilities who could not participate in state and district-wide assessment programs. The National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) developed an online survey on the development of alternate assessments and received responses from all 50 states. In addition, five educational units that received IDEA Part B funds (American Samoa, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Marshall Islands, Virgin Islands, and Washington DC) completed the survey. While the presentation in this report of all the approaches states are taking does not imply endorsement of any specific state alternate assessment practices, it does indicate that states were still moving in many directions despite regulations suggesting directions for development.

      Published: June 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Participation and Performance of Limited English Proficient Students During Second Attempts on a Graduation Exam (#28)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report examines the performance of English learners taking the Minnesota's Basic Standards Test in 8th grade for the first time and those needing to retake the test in school years 1996 through 1998.

      Published: June 2000
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Non-Approved Accommodations: Recommendations for Use and Reporting (#11)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report is intended to help states and districts consider the issues surrounding the use of non-approved accommodations. Recommendations are provided for ways to use and report data from assessments taken with non-approved accommodations.

      Published: May 2000
    • NCEO Out-of-Level Testing Project Reports: Past and Present Understandings of Out-of-Level Testing: A Research Synthesis (#1)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report reviews the historical development for out-of-level testing, summarizes how the literature defines out-of-level testing, explains how it has been studied, gives the rationale used to support its use, and addresses what is missing from the literature.

      Published: May 2000
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Where's Waldo? A Third Search for Students with Disabilities in State Accountability Reports (#25)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report analyzes state education reports to determine what types of information are provided on students with disabilities. It is the third such study conducted by the National Center on Educational Outcomes, and was based on 170 reports from state accountability offices and state special education offices. Findings reported include the following: (1) despite IDEA requirements for public reporting of assessment participation and performance data for students with disabilities, only 14 states included participation data and 17 states included performance data for students with disabilities in state assessments, (2) participation levels varied from 33% to 97% of students with disabilities, and (3) information on performance levels varied widely. The report presents several recommendations to states. These include the need for states to indicate how they will move toward meeting IDEA requirements for reporting data on students with disabilities, to consider how best to present these data to avoid unintended consequences, and to ensure an accounting of participation data for each performance score that is reported.

      Published: April 2000
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: State Participation and Accommodation Policies for Students with Disabilities: 1999 Update (#33)
      Formats:

      This 2000 report summarizes states' policies on the participation of students with disabilities in large-scale assessment, and the accommodations noted in state policies as available for those students. NCEO also checked for changes in state assessment policies.

      Published: April 2000
    • NCEO Classroom-Based Assessment Project: Changes in Mathematics Achievement and Instructional Ecology Resulting from Implementation of a Learning Information System
      Formats:

      A report from NCEO's Classroom-Based Assessment Project.

      Published: March 2000
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Gray Areas of Assessment Systems (#32)
      Formats:

      A 2000 paper clarifying what is meant by "gray areas of assessment" systems, delineating the primary issues that surround and contribute to gray areas, and providing suggestions for developing fully inclusive systems. As part of our nation's educational commitment to equity and excellence for all, we must develop better understanding of what it means to be accountable for all children, and identify more inclusive strategies of assessment and accountability. In response to our national commitment, and to specific legislation such as Title I of the Improving America's Schools Act (IASA) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act 1997 (IDEA '97), states and school districts are in the midst of developing large-scale assessment systems. Some have considered the challenge of students who do not fit into these assessment systems as one of "gray area students." New understanding is emerging that the problem does not lie with the students, but with the systems. This paper provides brief case studies of the assessment practices in two states, thereby highlighting the reality of gray areas as states implement their assessment systems. After a review of the national reform context, it presents a model that provides a basis for defining and addressing gray area concerns.

      Published: March 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Unintended Consequences of the Minnesota Basic Standards Tests: Do the Data Answer the Questions Yet? (#23)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report presents a literature review on the effects of statewide testing policies on the education of students with and without disabilities to examine whether the perception of increased referrals for special education assessments or 504 Accommodation Plans at the local level was present in published research.

      Published: January 2000
    • NCEO Maryland/Kentucky State Assessment Project: Instructional and Assessment Accommodations in Kentucky (#7)
      Formats:

      A report from the past Maryland-Kentucky-NCEO Assessment Project, a federally funded effort supported, in part, by a grant to the Maryland State Department of Education.

      Published: January 2000
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Participation and Performance of Limited English Proficient Students: Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments in Reading and Math, 1998-99 (#24)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report summarizes the participation and performance of English learners taking Minnesota's Comprehensive Assessments in Reading and Math for year 1998-1999.

      Published: January 2000
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Diploma Options and Graduation Policies for Students with Disabilities (#10)
      Formats:

      This year 2000 report identifies key issues to consider when answering questions on graduating testing policies for students with disabilities. It also makes suggestions for establishing inclusive and fair diploma options and graduation policies.

      Published: January 2000
    • National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) website
      Formats:

      A website presenting NCEO, which is a federally-funded technical assistance center that supports states and districts on issues related to inclusive assessments, particularly for students with disabilities, English learners (ELs), and ELs with disabilities. NCEO has a rich set of reports and other publications on a range of topics related to educational assessments. NCEO is one of ICI's affiliated centers.

      Published: 2000
  • 1999 Publications

    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Feasibility and Practicality of a Decision Making Tool for Standards Testing of Students with Limited English Proficiency (#22)
      Formats:

      This year 1999 report describes a decision-making tool to provide educators of English learner and bilingual students with the most current participation and test accommodation guidelines for informed decisions. The report describes the tool and reports on the results of a study examining the tool's feasibility.

      Published: December 1999
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Feasibility and Practicality of a Decision Making Tool for Standards Testing of Students with Disabilities (#21)
      Formats:

      This year 1999 report describes a study on the feasibility and practicality of an interactive decision-making tool developed to help special educators make appropriate participation and accommodations decisions, with students and their families, on Minnesota's statewide assessments.

      Published: December 1999
    • NCEO Maryland/Kentucky State Assessment Project: Instructional and Assessment Accommodations in Maryland (#6)
      Formats:

      A report from the past Maryland-Kentucky-NCEO Assessment Project, a federally funded effort supported, in part, by a grant to the Maryland State Department of Education.

      Published: December 1999
    • NCEO State Surveys: 1999 State Special Education Outcomes - A Report on State Activities at the End of the Century
      Formats:

      This year 1999 report summarizes results from a survey given to all states that addresses participation in statewide testing, high stakes attached to testing, and the development of alternate assessments.

      Published: December 1999
    • NCEO Maryland/Kentucky State Assessment Project: Accommodations, Modifications, and Alternates for Instruction and Assessment (#5)
      Formats:

      A report from the past Maryland-Kentucky-NCEO Assessment Project, a federally funded effort supported, in part, by a grant to the Maryland State Department of Education.

      Published: December 1999
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Bilingual Accommodations for Limited English Proficient Students on Statewide Reading Tests: Phase 1 (#20)
      Formats:

      This year 1999 report presents initial results from a quantitative and qualitative study examining the feasibility and desirability of offering English learners a reading test with bilingual test items and answer choices.

      Published: October 1999
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Limited English Proficient Students' Participation and Performance on Statewide Assessments: Minnesota Basic Standards Reading and Math, 1996-1998 (#19)
      Formats:

      This year 1999 report summarizes the participation and performance of English learners taking Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests from 1996 to 1998.

      Published: September 1999
    • NCEO Maryland/Kentucky State Assessment Project: Characteristics of Students Who Participate in Kentucky's Testing System Under Various Conditions (#4)
      Formats:

      A report from the past Maryland-Kentucky-NCEO Assessment Project, a federally funded effort supported, in part, by a grant to the Maryland State Department of Education.

      Published: August 1999
    • NCEO Classroom-Based Assessment Project: Using Accelerated Math to Enhance Instruction in a Mandated Summer School Program
      Formats:

      A report from NCEO's Classroom-Based Assessment Project.

      Published: July 1999
    • Forum on Alternate Assessment and "Gray Area" Assessment
      Formats:

      This year 1999 report presents the proceedings of a pre-conference session at the National Conference on Large-Scale Assessment that took place June 1999, where consensus emerged that it is not the students byt the assessments for which gray areas currently exist.

      Published: July 1999
    • Accommodations and the Performance of All Students on Rhode Island's Performance Assessment (Rhode Island Report 1)
      Formats:

      A report from the past Rhode Island Assessment Project, a federally funded effort.

      Published: June 1999
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Participation and Performance of Students Receiving Special Education Services on Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests: Reading and Math, 1996 through 1998 (#18)
      Formats:

      This year 1999 report summarizes the participation and performance of students with disabilities taking Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests from 1996 to 1998.

      Published: April 1999
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Out-of-Level Testing: Pros and Cons (#9)
      Formats:

      This year 1999 report describes out-of-level testing, its history, and presents arguments for and against its use. The report concludes with key considerations and questions to address before implementing out-of-level testing policies or administering an out-of-level test to a student.

      Published: April 1999
    • NCEO Technical Reports: State Graduation Requirements for Students With and Without Disabilities (#24)
      Formats:

      This year 1999 report documents state graduation requirements based on a survey study of assessment directors of 50 states and the District of Columbia. The National Center on Educational Outcomes and the National Transition Network collaborated in this study. The report describes what is required for students with and without disabilities to earn exit documents in each state, including standard diplomas, certificates of completion, IEP diplomas and honor diplomas, and provides details about exam and coursework modifications that states allow for students with disabilities. The report offers recommendations for policymakers as they consider setting policy for graduation requirements.

      Published: April 1999
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Status of the States in the Development of Alternate Assessments (#31)
      Formats:

      This 1999 report describes the results of an online survey to assess the status of states in the development of alternate assessments to be in place by July 1, 2000. In the survey, states were also asked about a variety of developmental features of their alternate assessments.

      Published: April 1999
    • Issues and Consequences for State-Level Minimum Competency Testing Programs (Wyoming Report 1)
      Formats:

      A report from the past Wyoming Assessment Project, a federally funded effort.

      Published: January 1999
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Participation and Performance of Students from non-English Language Backgrounds: Minnesota's 1996 Basic Standards Tests in Reading and Math (#17)
      Formats:

      This year 1999 report summarizes the participation and performance of students from non-English language backgrounds taking the Minnesota Basic Standards Tests in Reading and Math for 1996.

      Published: January 1999
  • 1998 Publications

    • NCEO Technical Reports: Educational Results for Students with Disabilities: What Do the Data Tell Us? (#23)
      Formats:

      This year 1998 report presents an analysis of state performance reports, focusing on how students with disabilities are doing nationally on assessments of academic content and nonacademic measures. The analysis includes 115 reports from state accountability offices and state special education offices, with state data organized by a framework designed by the National Center on Educational Outcomes. Findings include a description of the extent of states reporting these data as well as a summary of the data found.

      Published: December 1998
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Desired Characteristics for State and School District Educational Accontability Reports (#22)
      Formats:

      This year 1998 report presents findings of a study conducted to identify stakeholders' views of desirable characteristics of reports on student performance for all students, including students with disabilities. It investigates the extent to which these characteristics were evident in a diverse sample of seven states' accountability reports, and provides guidelines for desirable characteristics in reporting that state department personnel can use to improve accountability reports. The report presents descriptive findings and recommendations to states.

      Published: November 1998
    • NCEO Framework for Educational Accountability: Post-School Outcomes
      Formats:

      This 1998 document extends the NCEO Framework for Educational Accountability, focusing on outcomes and indicators for the post-school individual, and examines the relationship between these outcomes and indicators and the SCANS Skills & Competencies. How to adopt or adapt the framework for system-wide or individual accountability is explained.

      Published: October 1998
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Participation and Performance of Students with Disabilities: Minnesota's 1996 Basic Standards Tests in Reading and Math (#16)
      Formats:

      This year 1998 report summarizes data on the participation and performance of students with disabilities in Minnesota's Basic Standards Test in Reading and Math for 1996.

      Published: October 1998
    • NCEO Technical Reports: An Analysis of Perceived Desirability, Feasibility, and Actual Use of Specific Criteria for Large-Scale Assessment and Accountability Systems (#21)
      Formats:

      This year 1998 report describes results of a national survey of 222 administrators, teacher and other IEP team members who rated the desirability, feasibility and use of criteria for large-scale assessment and accountability systems for students with disabilities. The criteria addressed participation in assessments, accommodations on the assessments, and the reporting of results for students with disabilities. The report includes a discussion of findings with policy implications for educators and parents.

      Published: July 1998
    • NCEO Framework for Educational Accountability
      Formats:

      This 1998 paper describes a revised framework for educational accountability, which started with outcomes and indicators. The revised framework can be adapted for system-wide or individual accountability, and how it can work in concert with the National Association of State Directors of Special Education's "balanced system of accountability."

      Published: May 1998
    • NCEO Technical Reports: State Accountability Reports: What are States Saying about Students with Disabilities? (#20)
      Formats:

      This year 1998 report presents the results of a review of state accountability documents from 48 states and Washington DC, specifically analyzing how students with disabilities are represented. Findings describe the variability in reporting practices and the extent of information found on students with disabilities. Recommendations are also given such as including target audience information needs, avoiding overlap and inconsistency in reporting, carefully choosing educational indicators, and more.

      Published: May 1998
    • Accountability for the Results of Educating Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      This year 1998 report describes the findings of a conference NCEO convened to define issues and develop recommendations related to state and district-wide assessments and accountability needed to attain the benefits of the 1997 IDEA amendments and achieve better results for children with disabilities.

      Published: April 1998
    • NCEO Maryland/Kentucky State Assessment Project: Performance Trends and Use of Accommodations on a Statewide Assessment: Students with Disabilities in the KIRIS On-Demand Assessments from 1992-93 through 1995-96 (#3)
      Formats:

      A report from the past Maryland-Kentucky-NCEO Assessment Project, a federally funded effort supported, in part, by a grant to the Maryland State Department of Education.

      Published: April 1998
    • Accountability for the Results of Educating Students with Disabilities: Assessment Conference Report on the New Assessment Provisions of the 1997 Amendments to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
      Formats:

      A year 1998 conference report on the assessment provisions of the 1997 Amendments to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS), and its component Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) requested that NCEO convene a working conference in Washington DC to define issues and develop recommendations related to State and district-wide assessments and accountability. This report describes the findings of this conference.

      Published: April 1998
    • NCEO Technical Reports: An Analysis of Inclusion of Students with Disabilities in State Standards Documents (#19)
      Formats:

      This year 1998 report presents the results of a review of state accountability documents from 48 states and Washington DC, specifically analyzing how students with disabilities are represented. Findings describe the variability in reporting practices and the extent of information found on students with disabilities. Recommendations are also given such as including target audience information needs, avoiding overlap and inconsistency in reporting, carefully choosing educational indicators, and more.

      Published: January 1998
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Enhancing Communication: Desirable Characteristics for State and School District Educational Accountability Reports (#30)
      Formats:

      A report summarizing a 1997 meeting of members of a study group within the State Collaborative on Assessment and Student Standards, Assessing Special Education Students, which is made up of assessment and special education representatives, to develop a list of necessary, desirable, and succinct characteristics of good state and district educational accountability reports. A checklist of desirable characteristics for state and school district accountability reports is included.

      Published: January 1998
  • 1997 Publications

    • NCEO State Surveys: 1997 State Special Education Outcomes: A Report on State Activities During Educational Reform
      Formats:

      This report presents the results of the sixth survey of state activities in the assessment of educational outcomes for students with disabilities conducted by NCEO since 1991. NCEO sent the survey to directors of special education of all the 50 regular states and the 10 unique states that provide special education under the provisions of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Results are presented in seven sections: (1) Students with disabilities and standards-based reform, (2) Measuring the participation of students with disabilities in statewide testing, (3) state activities in developing alternate assessments, (4) Using assessment results for students with disabilities, (5) Individualized Educational Programs and assessments, (6) Measuring non-academic outcomes for students with disabilities, and (7) Current issues and technical assistance needs.

      Published: November 1997
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Educators' Responses to LEP Students' Participation in the 1997 Basic Standards Testing (#15)
      Formats:

      This year 1997 report presents survey results about the participation of English learners in Minnesota's Basic Standards Test in 1997-1998. The survey questions focused on participation and accommodation decision-making, and included responses from educators and administrators.

      Published: October 1997
    • Linking Inclusion to Conclusions: An Empirical Study of Participation of Students with Disabilities in Statewide Testing Programs (Oregon Report 1)
      Formats:

      A report from the past Oregon Assessment Project, a federally funded effort.

      Published: October 1997
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: State Assessment Policies on Participation and Accommodations for Students with Disabilities: 1997 Update (#29)
      Formats:

      This 1997 report summarizes states' policies on the participation of students with disabilities in large-scale assessment, and the accommodations available for those students. The data reflects policies from 1995 to 1997.

      Published: September 1997
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Special Education Teacher Responses to the 1997 Basic Standards Testing (#14)
      Formats:

      This year 1997 report presents information on how special education teachers made participation and accommodation decisions for students with disabilities in the 1997 administration of the Minnesota Basic Standards Test.

      Published: September 1997
    • NCEO Technical Reports: An Analysis of State Approaches to Including Students with Disabilities in Assessments Implemented During Educational Reform (#18)
      Formats:

      This year 1997 report evaluates states' policies on the inclusion, accommodations and reporting of students with disabilities in statewide assessments. It describes the input and consensus process used by the National Center on Educational Outcomes to develop evaluation elements designed to maximize participation of students with disabilities, and presents the results of applying these elements to states' written guidelines on participation, accommodations, and reporting. The findings of this analysis suggest a number of implementation and training issues, especially for IEP teams.

      Published: September 1997
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: High School Graduation Requirements in the U.S. for Students with Limited English Proficiency (#13)
      Formats:

      This year 1997 report examines state-level graduation requirements to see whether these result in different avenues for exiting high school for English learners.

      Published: September 1997
    • NCEO Maryland/Kentucky State Assessment Project: Reporting School Performance in the Maryland and Kentucky Accountability Systems: What Scores Mean and How They Are Used (#2)
      Formats:

      A report from the past Maryland-Kentucky-NCEO Assessment Project, a federally funded effort supported, in part, by a grant to the Maryland State Department of Education.

      Published: September 1997
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Putting Alternate Assessments into Practice: What to Measure and Possible Sources of Data (#28)
      Formats:

      This 1997 report highlights four information-gathering procedures that might be used in alternate assessments. The application of these procedures to collect data in broader outcome areas is also highlighted in the report.

      Published: September 1997
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: A Review of the Literature on Students with Limited English Proficiency and Assessment (#11)
      Formats:

      This year 1997 report summarizes a literature review conducted to examine best practices in assessing English learners. This review does not address second language acquisition in detail, nor competency development in content areas.

      Published: August 1997
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Reporting Educational Results for Students with Disabilities (#8)
      Formats:

      This year 1997 report explains the importance of public reporting of results for students with disabilities and describes principles for good reporting practices. It concludes with several further recommendations.

      Published: July 1997
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Providing Assessment Accommodations for Students with Disabilities in State and District Assessments (#7)
      Formats:

      This year 1997 report identifies issues to address in facilitating the provision of appropriate accommodations in state and district assessments. Issues focus on defining assessment accommodations, what types are available, who has input on their use, when they are used, how they affect results, and principles to guide decisions. The report ends with brief recommendations.

      Published: June 1997
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Cambodian, Hmong, Lao, Spanish-Speaking, and Vietnamese Parents and Students Speak Out on Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests (#12)
      Formats:

      This year 1997 report summarizes focus groups conducted on English learner participation in Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests involving English learners and their parents from the following language groups: Cambodian, Hmong, Lao, Spanish, and Vietnamese.

      Published: May 1997
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Increasing the Participation of Students with Disabilities in State and District Assessments (#6)
      Formats:

      This year 1997 report identifies considerations for increasing the participation of students with disabilities in state and district assessments. These include clarifying who should participate in these assessments, what principles should guide decisions about who participates, and how these considerations apply to graduation exams. The report ends with recommendations with steps to follow for aligning the principles to accountability systems.

      Published: May 1997
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Issues and Considerations in Alternate Assessments (#27)
      Formats:

      This 1997 report describes and discusses issues around the design of alternate assessments for students with disabilities.

      Published: January 1997
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: High Stakes Testing for Students: Unanswered Questions and Implications for Students with Disabilities (#26)
      Formats:

      This 1997 literature review looks at existing research on the effects of high stakes tests on students, with particular attention to students with disabilities. The review focuses on potential effects on the curriculum, students, student learning, attitudes, school climate, and costs, and offers recommendations for future research and for those people who develop, implement, and evaluate large-scale testing programs.

      Published: January 1997
  • 1996 Publications

    • NCEO Maryland/Kentucky State Assessment Project: A Comparison of State Assessment Systems in Maryland and Kentucky with a focus on the participation of students with disabilities (#1)
      Formats:

      A report from the past Maryland-Kentucky-NCEO Assessment Project, a federally funded effort supported, in part, by a grant to the Maryland State Department of Education.

      Published: November 1996
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Neglected Numerators, Drifting Denominators, and Fractured Fractions: Determining Participation Rates for Students with Disabilities in Statewide Assessment Programs (#23)
      Formats:

      Developing accurate reporting procedures on the participation of students with disabilities in large-scale assessment programs has proven to be difficult, due to a lack of data, differing definitions of eligible testing populations, and the misalignment of data collection efforts and data management responsibilities. This 1996 report provides specific recommendations for both policymakers and local practitioners and administrators to assist in improving our ability to accurately report the participation of students with disabilities in statewide assessment programs.

      Published: October 1996
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Alternate Assessments for Students with Disabilities (#5)
      Formats:

      This year 1996 report describes options for developing an alternate assessment for students unable to participate in the general district and state assessments that are used for accountability purposes. The focus is on large-scale accountability systems, rather than individual accountability measures, that create information on how the school, district, or state is doing in terms of student performance.

      Published: October 1996
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Assessment Guidelines that Maximize the Participation of Students with Disabilities in Large-Scale Assessments: Characteristics and Considerations (#25)
      Formats:

      This 1996 report provides: (1) An overview of immediate and past practice in participation, accommodation, and reporting of students with disabilities in state and national assessments; (2) Criteria for making decisions around participation, accommodation, and reporting of assessment results for students with disabilities. (3) Examples and nonexamples of criteria markers in existing state guidelines, (4) short list of assessment accommodations in four categories, and (5) A hands-on approach to examining and/or revising state and district guidelines about accountability, large-scale assessments, and students with disabilities.

      Published: October 1996
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Input from the Field on the Participation of Students with Limited English Proficiency and Students with Disabilities in Meeting the High Standards of Minnesota's Profile of Learning (#10)
      Formats:

      This year 1996 report summarizes focus group input from teachers and administrators on the participation of English learners and students with disabilities in Minnesota's Profile of Learning, which includes performance-based classroom-level assessments.

      Published: August 1996
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Questions and Answers: Tough Questions about Accountability Systems and Students with Disabilities (#24)
      Formats:

      This 1996 report provides answers to some of the most commonly asked questions addressing the participation of students with disabilities in educational accountability systems. Questions about the use of accommodations, the reporting of the results of all test takers, and implementation issues are included also.

      Published: September 1996
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: A Review of the Literature on Testing Accommodations for Students with Disabilities (#9)
      Formats:

      This year 1996 report reviews literature on testing accommodations for students with disabilities, emphasizing studies examining the effects of testing accommodations on the technical integrity of assessment measures.

      Published: August 1996
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Resources: Limited English Proficient Students in National and Statewide Assessments (#8)
      Formats:

      This year 1996 report provides an annotated bibliography on accommodation issues related to assessing English learners, focusing on literature published within a decade related to national and state administered assessments.

      Published: August 1996
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Resources: Students with Disabilities in National and Statewide Assessments (#7)
      Formats:

      This year 1996 report provides an annotated bibliography on accommodation issues related to students with disabilities in national and state administered assessments.

      Published: August 1996
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Accommodations for Students with Limited English Proficiency: Analysis of Guidelines from States with Graduation Exams (#6)
      Formats:

      This year 1996 report examines high stakes graduation testing guidelines, in states with these assessments, and describes trends in the types of testing accommodations allowed for English learners.

      Published: August 1996
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Accommodations for Students with Disabilities: Guidelines from States with Graduation Exams (#5)
      Formats:

      This year 1996 report examines accommodation policies in states with high stakes assessments and describes the accommodations allowed for students with disabilities.

      Published: August 1996
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Focus Group Input on Students with Limited English Proficiency and Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests (#4)
      Formats:

      This year 1996 report summarizes information from focus groups conducted to address the participation of English learners in Minnesota's first administration of the Basic Standards Tests in spring 1996.

      Published: August 1996
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Focus Group Input on Students with Disabilities and Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests (#3)
      Formats:

      This year 1996 report summarizes focus group input on the participation of students with disabilities on Minnesota's Basic Standards Tests.

      Published: August 1996
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Input from the Field on Assessing Students with Limited English Proficiency in Minnesota's Basic Requirements Exams (#2)
      Formats:

      This year 1996 report summarizes survey data from 22 Minnesota school districts addressing the implementation of the Basic Standards Tests, focusing on the participation and accommodation of English learners.

      Published: August 1996
    • NCEO Minnesota Assessment Project Reports: Input from the Field on Assessing Students with Disabilities in Minnesota's Basic Standards Exams (#1)
      Formats:

      This year 1996 report summarizes survey data from 22 Minnesota school districts on the implementation of the Minnesota Basic Standards Tests, focusing on the participation and accommodation of students with disabilities.

      Published: August 1996
    • Self-Study Guide for the Development of Statewide Assessments that Include Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      This year 1996 self-study guide is designed to help state education agency (SEA) staff evaluate and revise their assessment policies and procedures in a way that promotes the participation of all students in some form of their state assessment programs. More specifically, it is intended for staff responsible for the state assessment system and staff responsible for the education of students with disabilities. It also could be used by test development contractors and stakeholders who are serving on state task forces to develop state assessment systems. And, this guide should be helpful to local education agency staff who wish to revise their own assessments to include all students.

      Published: 1996
    • NCEO State Surveys: 1995 State Special Education Outcomes: Longitudinal Trends in How States are Assessing Educational Outcomes for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      This report presents the results of the fifth annual survey of state activities in the assessment of educational outcomes for students with disabilities. NCEO sent the survey to directors of special education of all the 50 regular states and the 10 unique states that provide special education under the provisions of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Respondents were asked to respond to items about the current status or activities of their states in these areas: federally-reported data, assessments of outcomes, participation of students with disabilities in state assessments, and state technical assistance needs. In several of these areas, it was possible to examine longitudinal trends by comparing responses from the first survey to current responses.

      Published: April 1996
  • 1995 Publications

    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: A Disability Perspective on Five Years of Education Reform (#22)
      Formats:

      This report provides a summary of policy trends of the five years preceding 1995, viewed through a lens focusing on the implications of policy shifts for the educational outcomes of students with disabilities.

      Published: December 1995
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Matching Information in National Data Collection Programs to a Model of Post-School Outcomes and Indicators (#17)
      Formats:

      This year 1995 report describes the extent of correspondence between information available on indicators for post-school outcomes in national data collection programs and the post-school outcomes in a model developed by the National Center on Educational Outcomes and partnering stakeholders. Findings include: 1) a summary of post-school outcomes for all students represented in ten national data collection programs, 2) the observation that these outcomes are less available for students with disabilities than indicators at the school completion level, and 3) the conclusion that there is a significant exclusion or lack of identification of students with disabilities in national data programs. Recommendations are provided to revise national data collection programs in order to produce useful policy-relevant information regarding post-school completion outcomes for students with disabilities.

      Published: October 1995
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Matching State Goals to a Model of Outcomes and Indicators for Grade 8 (#16)
      Formats:

      This year 1995 report describes the extent of correspondence between state articulated student outcomes and indicators at grade 8 and the grade 8 outcomes in a model developed by the National Center on Educational Outcomes and partnering stakeholders. Figures showing the outcomes at grade 8 and information on the matching activity are presented. The model was developed in order to aid state and local level practitioners involved in the articulation of educational goals, performance standards, assessments, and curriculum frameworks at different age and grade levels.

      Published: October 1995
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Matching State Goals to a Model of Outcomes and Indicators for Grade 4 (#15)
      Formats:

      This year 1995 report describes the extent of correspondence between state articulated student outcomes and indicators at grade 4 and the grade 4 outcomes in a model developed by the National Center on Educational Outcomes and partnering stakeholders. Figures showing the outcomes at grade 4 and information on the matching activity are presented. The model was developed in order to aid state and local level practitioners involved in the articulation of educational goals, performance standards, assessments, and curriculum frameworks at different age and grade levels.

      Published: September 1995
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Matching State Goals to a Model of Outcomes and Indicators for Age 6 (#14)
      Formats:

      This year 1995 report describes the extent of correspondence between state articulated student outcomes and indicators at age 6 and the age 6 outcomes in a model developed by the National Center on Educational Outcomes and partnering stakeholders. Figures showing the outcomes at age 6 and information on the matching activity are presented. The model was developed in order to aid state and local level practitioners involved in the articulation of educational goals, performance standards, assessments, and curriculum frameworks at different age and grade levels.

      Published: August 1995
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Matching State Goals to a Model of Outcomes and Indicators for Age 3 (#13)
      Formats:

      This year 1995 report describes the extent of correspondence between state articulated student outcomes and indicators at age 3 and the age 3 outcomes in a model developed by the National Center on Educational Outcomes and partnering stakeholders. Figures showing the outcomes at age 3 and information on the matching activity are presented. The model was developed in order to aid state and local level practitioners involved in the articulation of educational goals, performance standards, assessments, and curriculum frameworks at different age and grade levels.

      Published: August 1995
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Matching State Goals to a Model of Outcomes and Indicators for the Post-School Level (#12)
      Formats:

      This year 1995 report describes the extent to which there was a correspondence between state-articulated student outcomes and the outcomes specified in a model developed by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO). The NCEO model of outcomes and indicators, developed using a multi-attribute consensus-building tool with hundreds of stakeholders, is presented. It articulates eight major outcome domains with indicators at keys stages of a student's development: age 3, age 6, grade 4, grade 8, school-completion, and post-school. Information in the model was developed for use by state and local level practitioners involved in the articulation of educational goals, performance standards, assessments, and curriculum frameworks at different age and grade levels.

      Published: August 1995
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Disability Summary Analyses of Select National Data Collection Programs (#11)
      Formats:

      This year 1995 report presents a disability summary analysis of select national data collection programs. Summary analyses were conducted to document the amount and nature of information on individuals with disabilities in our national data collection programs. The rationale for the specific data collection programs, the review procedures and the future use of the information by NCEO are found in a separate document Outcomes for Children and Youth with Disabilities: Secondary Analysis of National data Collection Programs.

      Published: August 1995
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Why We Can't Say Much About the Status of Students with Disabilities During Education Reform (#21)
      Formats:

      This 1995 report synthesizes the results of National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) activities that focused on determining whether secondary data analysis of state and/or national data collection programs could produce policy-relevant reports on the status of children and youth with disabilities. Recommendations are offered for improving the collection and reporting of information in state and national data collection programs.

      Published: August 1995
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: High School Graduation Requirements: What's Happening for Students with Disabilities? (#20)
      Formats:

      This 1995 report examines documentation from state departments of education on high school graduation requirements for students in general, and for student with disabilities.

      Published: May 1995
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: A Perspective on Education and Assessment in Other Nations: Where Are Students with Disabilities? (#19)
      Formats:

      Findings about the exclusion of students with disabilities in U. S. assessments necessarily lead to questions about the status of students with disabilities in international comparison assessments and in the assessments used in other nations. Are students with disabilities included in these assessments? Are appropriate accommodations used during the assessments? When are "exclusion rates" reported? Do all countries start from the same base of "all" students? The purpose of this 1995 report is to address these kinds of questions. We do this by examining students with disabilities in international comparison studies and in assessments in each of 14 nations, including the U. S., that are among those included in previous or current international comparative studies.

      Published: April 1995
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: A Compilation of States' Guidelines for Accommodations in Assessments for Students with Disabilities (#18)
      Formats:

      This report provides a listing of states' written guidelines on accommodations, modifications, and adaptations of assessments for students with disabilities (1993).

      Published: March 1995
    • NCEO State Surveys: State Special Education Outcomes 1994: A Report on How States are Assessing Educational Outcomes for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      A report on NCEO's survey of states conducted in 1993 to address the needs of state directors, policymakers and others for information about current state activities in multiple outcomes areas: Knowledge, skills, status, and attitudes of students with disabilities. It also addresses issues related to change over time in accountability and assessment activities. The specific questions this survey focused on were: (1) What effect the activities outlined in Goals 2000: The Educate America Act have on state special education service delivery systems, (2) What efforts states are making to develop learner goals and related assessments, (3) How broadly the NCEO model of educational outcomes and indicators has been disseminated and used within state and local educational agencies, and (4) The extent to which students with disabilities are participating in statewide achievement assessments now being used by states.

      Published: March 1995
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: A Compilation of States' Guidelines for Including Students with Disabilities in Assessments (#17)
      Formats:

      This report provides a listing of states' written guidelines on the participation of students with disabilities in assessments (1993).

      Published: February 1995
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Opportunity to Learn Standards (#4)
      Formats:

      This year 1995 report defines opportunity-to-learn standards, addresses the rationale behind them, and makes recommendations for how to reasonably include students with disabilities when considering these standards.

      Published: January 1995
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Synthesis Report Update 1994: Reports on the Status of Education, Desired Outcomes, and Reform Initiatives (#16)
      Formats:

      This report examines national activities by highlighting 40 reports that reflect the array of reform initiatives underway in 1995. To position some of these reports within the larger restructuring effort, we first summarize the paradigm shifts that the documents reflect.

      Published: January 1995
  • 1994 Publications

    • NCEO Policy Directions: Educational Accountability for Students with Disabilities (#3)
      Formats:

      This year 1994 report outlines steps that educators can take towards a new and inclusive accountability system with consistent procedures for all students, including students with disabilities. These steps include considering alternative approaches to accountability, ensuring educators have data needed to demonstrate that education is working for students with disabilities, and ways to overcome potential barriers to obtaining these data. The report concludes with specific recommendations.

      Published: November 1994
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Secondary Analysis of State Assessment Data: Why We Can't Say Much About Students with Disabilities (#10)
      Formats:

      This year 1994 report summarizes activities of the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) directed at producing a report on the status of students with disabilities from the secondary analysis of state collected achievement data. Although more than half of the 50 states reported that large-scale achievement data were available for some students with disabilities, potentially usable data were obtained from only six states. The report describes numerous difficulties encountered in attempts to collect and aggregate state achievement data on students with disabilities and concludes that it was not possible to produce a synthesis report on the achievement status of students with disabilities from aggregated state data bases. Recommendations are presented for improving the probability of conducting such analyses in the future.

      Published: August 1994
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Opportunity-to-Learn Standards (#14)
      Formats:

      This report provides an overview of the use of the term "Opportunity to learn (OTL) standards in recent (1994) legislation, alternative perspectives on OTL standards, and state practices in the implementation of OTL standards. We examine how students with disabilities are treated in discussion of OTL standards, how people propose to measure OTL, and major issues surrounding the concept of OTL standards. Implications for students with disabilities are discussed, and we conclude with several recommendations.

      Published: July 1994
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Recommendations for Making Decisions About the Participation of Students with Disabilities in Statewide Assessment Programs: A Report on a Working Conference to Develop Guidelines for Statewide Assessments and Students with Disabilities (#15)
      Formats:

      This report is a summary of a meeting held in the Washington, DC area on May 17 and 18, 1994. The purpose of the meeting was to: (1) Discuss participation of students with disabilities in state assessment programs, (2) Discuss adaptations in assessments or assessment procedures to accommodate students with disabilities, (3) Attempt to arrive at agreement on a reasonable set of practices in making participation and accommodation decisions, and (4) Identify major technical and implementation issues that might be part of state or federal research agendas on participation and accommodations in assessment programs. This report proposes a set of recommendations for making participation and accommodation decisions, and indicate the fundamental assumptions that underlie participation of students with disabilities in state assessment programs. We describe the rational for the development of a consistent system for making decisions about participation and accommodations in state assessment programs.

      Published: July 1994
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Students with Disabilities and Educational Standards: Recommendations for Policy and Practice (#2)
      Formats:

      This year 1994 report describes various types of standards in education (i.e., content, performance, opportunity-to-learn, and assessment) and summarizes issues when applying these standards to all students, including students with disabilities. The report concludes with recommendations for policies addressing content and performance standards.

      Published: May 1994
    • NCEO Policy Directions: Guidelines for Inclusion of Students with Disabilities in Large-Scale Assessments (#1)
      Formats:

      This year 1994 report provides background on how students with disabilities have been excluded from large scale assessments and provides recommendations for the development of guidelines and monitoring practices that promote full participation of students with disabilities in large-scale assessment programs. It recommends guidelines for policies that address inclusion, accommodations and adaptations, and monitoring of implementation of these policies.

      Published: May 1994
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Making Decisions About the Inclusion of Students with Disabilities in Large-Scale Assessments: A Report on a Working Conference to Develop Guidelines on Inclusion and Accommodations (#13)
      Formats:

      This report is a summary of a meeting held in Washington, D.C. on March 9-10, 1994. Much of the focus of this meeting was on the challenges faced in making decisions about inclusion and accommodations for students with disabilities on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). The content of this report and the recommended guidelines also have applicability for state large-scale assessments.

      Published: April 1994
    • NCEO State Surveys: State Special Education Outcomes 1993: A Report on State Activities in the Assessment of Educational Outcomes for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      A report on NCEO's third survey of states conducted in 1993 to address the needs of state directors, policymakers and others for information about current state activities in multiple outcomes areas: Knowledge, skills, status, and attitudes of students with disabilities. It also addresses issues related to change over time in accountability and assessment activities. The specific objectives of this survey were to: (1) Develop an ongoing system to describe the status of state activities to assess educational outcomes, (2) Develop an ongoing tracking system of procedures and practices used by states to include and make accommodations in the assessment of students with disabilities, (3) Identify persistent barriers and needs of states related to outcomes assessment, and (4) Identify state data bases that might be used to create a national data base of outcomes for students with disabilities.

      Published: March 1994
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Implementation of Alternative Methods for Making Educational Accountability Decisions for Students with Disabilities (#12)
      Formats:

      This report examines some of the issues and challenges in gathering data for purposes of making accountability decisions for students with disabilities (1994). The report (1) describes the alternative methods that are being used, (2) describes the student population and accountability decision-making practices in representative states, (3) describes the kinds of issues State Education Agency (SEA) personnel encounter, (4) identifies the kinds of data SEA and national education policy personnel say would be needed to demonstrate that education works for students with disabilities, (5) describes ways in which SEA personnel have been successful in overcoming barriers, and (6) makes recommendations of promising practices for making accountability decisions.

      Published: March 1994
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Matching State Goals to a Model of School Completion Outcomes and Indicators (#9)
      Formats:

      This year 1994 report presents the conceptual model of school completion indicators developed by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) in partnership with stakeholders and compares how the identified indicators match to those developed by states. The model, which includes eight major outcome domains, was designed to be appropriate for students with and without disabilities at these levels: early childhood--age 3, early childhood--age 6, grade 4, grade 8, school-completion, and post school.

      Published: February 1994
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Availability of Data on School Completion Outcomes and Indicators (#8)
      Formats:

      This year 1994 report examines the extent to which indicators in the model of outcomes and indicators developed by the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) were found in states at the school completion level. The model contained eight domains or content areas. Data managers from 36 states or territories reported that data were available for indicators in the Presence and Participation and Contribution and Citizenship domains, but few data were available for the remaining six areas. The report discusses the need to establish new instruments and data collection systems in order to report outcomes valued by educators and parents.

      Published: January 1994
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Matching Information in National Data Collection Programs to a Model of School Completion Outcomes and Indicators (#7)
      Formats:

      This year 1994 report presents results from a study comparing the National Center on Educational Outcomes' (NCEO) comprehensive system of Educational Outcomes and Indicators for Students Completing School and indicators included in national data collection programs. The results indicated that important school completion outcomes for all students were substantially represented in the national data collection system. Across 13 national data collection programs, 91% of the NCEO school completion outcome indicators were found to be represented by at least one measure. However, it was not possible to produce comprehensive reports about the status of students with disabilities due to the significant exclusion of such students from data collection programs and the variable or nonexistent identification of such students in national data collection programs. Recommendations are provided to realize the potential present for producing useful policy-relevant information regarding school completion outcomes for students with disabilities.

      Published: January 1994
  • 1993 Publications

    • NCEO Technical Reports: The Identification of People With Disabilities in National Databases: A Failure to Communicate (#6)
      Formats:

      This year 1993 report presents an analysis of how students with disabilities were identified in national databases. It examined 19 national data collection programs in the U.S. Departments of Education, Commerce, Justice, and Health and Human Services, as well as databases from the National Science Foundation. Findings showed significant variability was evident in the disability categories used both within and across the national data collection programs. Suggestions are provided for improving disability identification in collecting and reporting policy relevant information.

      Published: September 1993
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: National Goals, National Standards, National Tests: Concerns for All (Not Virtually All) Students With Disabilities? (#11)
      Formats:

      This report provides an analysis of inclusion as it relations to national goals, national standards, and national tests for students with disabilities. Efforts to address these concerns as well as actions that can be taken to improve services to students with disabilities are described.

      Published: November 1993
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Outcome-Based Education: Its Relevance to State and National Decision Making (#9)
      Formats:

      This report was developed to propose a framework for applying an outcome-based approach throughout the education system for students with disabilities. The needs of three major levels of the system were examined: local, state, and national. It is argued that it is necessary to define different uses for the term "outcome" in order to achieve consensus and understanding. Matching uses with the needs of the specific levels of the system will help clarify communications and facilitate the process of identifying expected outcomes.

      Published: October 1993
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: The Effects of Standards and Assessment on Students in Special Education (#10)
      Formats:

      In this report, the author examines accountability and assessment issues that are relevant to students in special education.

      Published: October 1993
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Views on Inclusion and Testing Accommodations for Students with Disabilities (#7)
      Formats:

      This monograph represents the culmination of an effort to obtain expert opinions about the challenges of inclusion (who should be included - or excluded - from assessments, how the decision is made, and who makes the decision) and accommodations (what modifications can be made in assessment materials and/or procedures that still allow valid assessment results to be obtained). This monograph presents papers on issues of inclusion and accommodations be field experts Bob Algozzine, Paul H. Koehler, Barbar L. Loeding and Jerry B. Crittenden, Jack Merwin, Daniel J. Reschly, and Maynard C. Reynolds.

      Published: September 1993
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Synthesis Report Update 1993: Recent Activities in National Goals, Standards, and Tests (#8)
      Formats:

      This report updates major recent (1993) national initiatives in the areas of (a) the national education goals, (b) standards, and (c) national testing for students with disabilities.

      Published: September 1993
    • NCEO Technical Reports: IEPs and Standards: What They Say for Students with Disabilities (#5)
      Formats:

      This year 1993 report presents a study comparing students' IEPs to national and locally defined standards for mathematics. The IEPs of 76 students with mild disabilities were compared to the National Assessment of Educational Progress proficiency levels for mathematics, local standards, and a taxonomy of dimensions including: Level of Mastery, Nature of the Material, and Operations. The report suggests a widening of the gap between what students with disabilities are taught and the assessments with which they are tested. Implications for actions by the special education and standards-setting communities are discussed.

      Published: May 1993
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Implications of Outcomes-Based Education for Children with Disabilities (#6)
      Formats:

      This report discusses Outcomes-based education (OBE) and its implications for students with disabilities from the perspective of the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO).

      Published: April 1993
    • NCEO State Surveys: State Special Education Outcomes 1992: A Report on State Activities in the Assessment of Educational Outcomes for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      A report NCEO's second survey of states conducted in 1992 to address the needs of state directors, policymakers and others for information about current state activities in multiple outcomes areas: Knowledge, skills, status, and attitudes of students with disabilities. It also addresses issues related to change over time in accountability and assessment activities. The specific objectives of this survey were to: (1) Develop an ongoing system to describe the status of state activities to assess educational outcomes, (2) Develop an ongoing tracking system of procedures and practices used by states to include and make accommodations in the assessment of students with disabilities, (3) Identify persistent barriers and needs of states related to outcomes assessment, and (4) Identify state data bases that might be used to create a national data base of outcomes for students with disabilities.

      Published: March 1993
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Testing Accommodations for Students with Disabilities: A Review of the Literature (#4)
      Formats:

      This report is a review of literature (1993) pertaining to testing accommodations for people with disabilities. It draws on a wide range of information, from empirical studies conducted by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) and by the American College Testing (ACT) Program, to policies for state assessment programs. Addressed in this report are policy and legal considerations, technical concerns, minimum competency and certification/licensure testing efforts, existing standards and accommodations allowed in state assessment systems.

      Published: March 1993
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Can "All" Ever Really Mean "All" in Defining and Assessing Student Outcomes? (#5)
      Formats:

      This report explores what what "all" means in defining student outcomes in educational assessment systems.

      Published: March 1993
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Experts' Opinions about the Appropriateness and Feasibility of National Math Standards (#4)
      Formats:

      This year 1993 report presents survey results on the appropriateness and feasibility of the Curriculum and Evaluation Standards published by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics in relation to math instruction for students with disabilities. The study surveyed eleven experts in the areas of mathematics education, special education, and assessment. Results showed that the major factor determining opinions about the Standards was the respondents' basic belief about the appropriate form of math instruction for students with disabilities. Little agreement on the appropriateness and feasibility of the Standards was found beyond the elementary grade levels. A discussion of the implications for the math education of students with disabilities is included.

      Published: February, 1993
  • 1992 Publications

    • NCEO Technical Reports: Experts' Opinions on National Math Standards for Students with Disabilities (#3)
      Formats:

      This year 1992 report presents survey results of eleven experts in mathematics education, special education and assessment in relation to current math instruction and the Curriculum and Evaluation Standards of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, and the perceived appropriateness and feasibility of the Standards for students with disabilities. Results showed that the experts agreed the adoption of the Standards was minimal and that math education in practice continues to emphasize basic skills. Two opposing viewpoints were evident in the experts' responses. One viewpoint was that the Standards did not recognize the importance of individual differences and were not better than current practice in math education. The opposing viewpoint was that the Standards reflected a vision of what mathematics should be and that minimal, non- substantial modifications were needed for students with disabilities. These opinions are summarized and discussed.

      Published: September 1992
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Responses to Working Paper 1 Conceptual Model of Educational Outcomes for Children and Youth with Disabilities (#3)
      Formats:

      Working Paper 1, "A Conceptual Model of Educational Outcomes for Children and Youth with Disabilities," was initially distributed by staff of the National Center on Educational Outcomes in July of 1991 to approximately 175 individuals, requesting their input on the ideas presented therein. This synthesis paper represents the input of over 60 additional respondents.

      Published: June 1992
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Synthesis Report Update 1992: Policy Groups and Reports on Assessing Educational Outcomes (#2)
      Formats:

      The purpose of this report is to provide an update to information presented in Synthesis Report #1. Specifically, this report provides information on the key national policy groups involved in outcomes--related activities and on key reports that have been produced by these groups and others during the past year (1992).

      Published: April 1992
    • NCEO Technical Reports: Inclusion of Students with Disabilities in National and State Data Collection Programs (#2)
      Formats:

      This year 1992 report summarizes the extent to which individuals with disabilities were represented in national and state data collection programs. After 30 different data collection programs were identified for potential evaluation, 9 of them were reviewed. The extent to which students with disabilities were included in state outcomes assessment activities was evaluated through a survey of state directors of special education. Findings include statistics on the percent of students with disabilities being excluded, issues related to exclusion guidelines, and issues stemming from the lack of representation of students with disabilities in national outcome measures.

      Published: March 1992
    • NCEO State Surveys: State Special Education Outcomes 1991: A Report on State Activities in the Assessment of Educational Outcomes for Students with Disabilities
      Formats:

      This is NCEO's first survey of states conducted in 1991 to address the needs of state directors, policymakers and others for information about current state activities in multiple outcomes areas: Knowledge, skills, status, and attitudes of students with disabilities. It also addresses issues related to change over time in accountability and assessment activities. The specific objectives of this survey were to: (1) Develop an ongoing system to describe the status of state activities to assess educational outcomes, (2) Develop an ongoing tracking system of procedures and practices used by states to include and make accommodations in the assessment of students with disabilities, (3) Identify persistent barriers and needs of states related to outcomes assessment, and (4) Identify state data bases that might be used to create a national data base of outcomes for students with disabilities.

      Published: January 1992
  • 1991 Publications

    • NCEO Technical Reports: State Practices in the Assessment of Outcomes for Students with Disabilities (#1)
      Formats:

      This year 1991 report provides information on what states and territories were doing related to outcomes assessment during the years of 1991 to 1995. It presents the results of surveys and reviews of then current state practices and future plans. The Survey of State Policies was conducted to: (a) produce a data base on state efforts to develop systems to assess educational outcomes, (b) assess states' needs for solutions t technical/implementation problems, (c) identify important state-level information and existing data bases, and (d) assess efforts of states to design a comprehensive system of indicators in general and special education.

      Published: October 1991
    • NCEO Synthesis Reports: Assessing Educational Outcomes: State Activity and Literature Integration (#1)
      Formats:

      In October 1990 the National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) for Students with Disabilities was established at the University of Minnesota. Its mission is to provide national leadership in the development of educational outcomes and a system of indicators for students with disabilities. For NCEO it is necessary to give attention not only to the most recent research related to outcomes indicators in general but also to research that has been conducted in special education. The purpose of this document is to provide a synthesis of information that is available in the current literature. Topics of relevance to this literature review include (1) Educational reform and its current status in the United States, (2) Definitions of key terms, (3) Current models of educational indicators in both general education and special education, (4) Current states of outcomes indicators activities in both general education and special education, and (5) Critical issues in the development of a comprehensive system of educational indicators. This document will be revised annually in order to incorporate new literature and current events that pertain to the educational outcomes of students with disabilities.

      Published: July 1991