This page contains archived content from a LINCS email discussion list that closed in 2012. This content is not updated as part of LINCS’ ongoing website maintenance, and hyperlinks may be broken.
Return-Path: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Received: from literacy (localhost [127.0.0.1]) by literacy.nifl.gov (8.10.2/8.10.2) with SMTP id j1HJtkC28926; Thu, 17 Feb 2005 14:55:46 -0500 (EST) Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2005 14:55:46 -0500 (EST) Message-Id: <email@example.com> Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com Precedence: bulk From: "Dianne Glass" <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: Multiple recipients of list <email@example.com> Subject: [NIFL-ASSESSMENT:920] RE: Voice in writing X-Listprocessor-Version: 6.0c -- ListProcessor by Anastasios Kotsikonas Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit Content-Type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII X-Mailer: Novell GroupWise Internet Agent 6.5.1 Status: O Content-Length: 12519 Lines: 374 Kansas has used the CASAS Functional Writing Assessment (FWA) for almost 10 years. While it requires an enormous commitment of time and energy to ensure that the scoring of a performance-based assessment is standardized, Kansas adult educators have responded positively to the lengthy process of being "certified" to use the FWA and to maintaining certification. They report that the process has helped them become much better teachers of writing. Dianne S. Glass Director of Adult Education Kansas Board of Regents 1000 SW Jackson Street, Suite 520 Topeka, KS 66612-1368 785.296.7159 Phone: 785.296.7159 FAX: 785.296.0983 firstname.lastname@example.org >>> email@example.com 2/17/2005 12:18:12 PM >>> Marie, Howard has articulated the main reason that the CASAS rubric is for both ABE and ESL learners. He said, "We don't hold learners to different standards. Our instructors see 'good writing' as 'good writing' whoever is doing the writing." We would add that employers and others on the receiving end of our students' writing don't have different standards, either. We would recommend placing ESL and ABE students in different classes since instruction and the kinds of strengths and errors will be very different for the two groups, but the general characteristics of writing for both groups can be described within a single rubric. We have been working with this for nearly ten years and have become very comfortable with scoring both types of learners on the same rubric, though it is often necessary to be careful not to over-reward ESL learners for "trying" when they haven't quite succeeded in writing at a certain level. In answer to your earlier questions about writing prompts, I can respond with respect to the CASAS Functional Writing Assessment Picture Task, which is currently being used for accountability reporting in Kansas, Iowa, Connecticut, Oregon, Indiana, Vermont and New York Even Start. Prompts for this task are line drawings showing a scene with a central critical incident as well as a number of other things happening in the picture. This type of prompt can be answered by students from beginning to advanced levels in ABE, ASE and ESL programs. It takes a long time to develop a viable prompt, with many rounds of revisions based on field-testing input from teachers and students and back and forth work with an artist. They are written by a small team of test developers who have extensive experience as adult ed. teachers. Topics for the prompts come from needs assessments from adult ed. programs and workplace surveys. We currently have seven prompts - four that are on general life skills topics (a car accident scene, a grocery store check-out scene, a park scene, and a department store scene). There are three more prompts that have a workplace focus - a restaurant kitchen scene, a hotel scene and a warehouse scene. Like the REEP, these prompts are scored with an analytic rubric, but with slightly different categories: Content; Organization; Word Choice; Grammar and Sentence Structure; and Spelling, Capitalization and Punctuation. The categories are weighted, with more importance given to the first three categories to emphasize the importance of communication of ideas in writing. We have recently completed a study to convert the rubric scores to a common IRT scale, which provides a more accurate means of reporting results across prompts. We have also just completed a cut score study to refine the relationship of the CASAS Picture Task writing scores to the NRS levels. With all of the work that goes into developing and standardizing a test prompt, it is not made available for classroom practice. However, we have found several published materials that contain similar types of pictures that can be used for classroom practice. We encourage programs to share the rubric with students for instruction, in addition to using it to communicate test results to teachers and learners. Many teachers tell us that completing the training for the writing assessment, which focuses on the scoring rubric, has given them a better understanding of how to approach the teaching of writing. The analytic rubric provides clear diagnostic information about students' strengths and weaknesses in the different rubric categories. I am very pleased that some states are choosing to include writing in the mix of assessments that can be reported for accountability purposes. It is more work to include performance assessment in a state's accountability system, due to the additional training and scoring demands, but the states that are doing it have found it to be worth the extra effort. Linda Taylor, CASAS (800) 255-1036, ext. 186 -----Original Message----- From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of Marie Cora Sent: Thursday, February 17, 2005 9:54 AM To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: [NIFL-ASSESSMENT:914] RE: Voice in writing Hi Bonnie, thanks for this. Yes, I think that it would have been real tricky for me to have a rubric that didn't distinguish between ESOL/ABE students. Unless they are transitioning from ESOL to ABE perhaps. It's tricky enough, as you note, to adhere to rubric anchors and so forth, so adding that you are working with different populations with the assessment would add a layer that I would also find difficult. CASAS folks: can you tell us why the writing rubric is not separate? What's the rationale there? It seems like the needs, esp. at the lower levels, would be very different. REEP folks: what do you think about that? Perhaps that was never a consideration for you though, since REEP serves the ESOL population (is that right?). Thanks, marie -----Original Message----- From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of firstname.lastname@example.org Sent: Tuesday, February 15, 2005 1:21 PM To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: [NIFL-ASSESSMENT:908] RE: Voice in writing I, too, have been intrigued by the idea of "voice" in the rubric, and while I intuitively "know" what it means, I'm interested as an emerging writing specialist as to what elements would constitute voice, beyond more traditional "academic" ways of "measuring" it. I think of the clarity or persuasiveness of a point of view supported with meaningful examples, the personal voice in a narrator struggling with complex questions, forthright emotion strikingly articulated with imagery or other means, an attempt at critical thinking, or "learning to learn," self-reflectiveness... I'd be interested in hearing from others. Another point I encountered when I was involved with CT's working with the CASAS writing assessments: the rubric was not meant to distinguish between ABE and ESL students. As an evaluator, I as an ESL specialist was at a disadvantage: having attained a certain level of skill in "translating" English learners' language into meaningful utterances, I'd automatically bring that to my evaluation: it was extremely difficult to adhere to the rubric controls and anchors, and not want to commend the ESL learner for attempting with limited language ability to voice something difficult to articulate in another language, as having communicated more than in fact they did. Best, Bonnie Odiorne, Ph.D. Writing Center, English Language Institute Post University, Waterbury, CT Original Message: ----------------- From: Marie Cora email@example.com Date: Tue, 15 Feb 2005 12:02:28 -0500 (EST) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: [NIFL-ASSESSMENT:906] RE: Voice in writing Hi everyone, A couple of observations: First, please do note that this assessment is a fine example of a performance-based assessment that has been standardized. So if anyone still thinks that standardized assessments all look like TABE, consider your myth debunked. I think that capturing voice in writing is quite important, and I'm glad that the REEP rubric includes this area. If not for voice, the rest of the examination of the writing is based on the 'academics' of the writing - and I feel like that leaves out the writer's (emerging) personality. I note in looking around a little bit, not a whole bunch of other writing assessments take voice into account (the GED does not for example). I also think that because voice is a dimension of the rubric, students will pay more attention to that area and view it as equally important as the other dimensions. (A bit of "what counts gets counted" there.) What do others think about voice and the other dimensions? marie -----Original Message----- From: email@example.com [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On Behalf Of Suzanne Grant Sent: Monday, February 14, 2005 1:38 PM To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: [NIFL-ASSESSMENT:905] RE: REEP Discussion Begins Today! Greetings from Suzanne and Pat at REEP! We would like to thank Susan O'Connor for her message, congratulations, and for getting this writing assessment discussion started. The development of our writing assessment, too, was also supported by the Lila Wallace Foundation. From 1997-2002, the REEP Program was one of 12 adult education programs nationwide funded to study what works in assessment. The project was called the What Works Literacy Partnership (WWLP) and was funded by the Lila Wallace Foundation. The lead agency was Literacy Partners of New York. We had developed the rubric earlier, but through WWLP, we developed pre and post prompts and carried out studies to determine the effectiveness of using the rubric to measure progress. Susan and all on this list, we would be interested in hearing what writing traits you feel are important to include in writing assessment rubrics. In our case, the engagement of the writer with the topic was a factor in how we were assessing the writing, and we, therefore, felt we needed to include voice as a trait in the REEP Writing Rubric. Other writing assessment questions and topics are welcome. Suzanne Grant and Pat Thurston REEP Writing Assessment Master Trainers Arlington Education and Employment Program (REEP) Arlington Public Schools Arlington, Virginia >>> S.Oconnor@BrooklynPublicLibrary.org 02/14/05 8:54 AM >>> Good Morning: I wish to congratulate the REEP creators! Brooklyn Public Library Literacy Program moved to writing in the early 90's. In an effort to codify students' gains and with a grant from the then Lila Wallace foundation we created a writing rubric for non-reading Adults - up to about a fifth grade reading level. We have been using this successfully for years. But because it was not normed we couldn't use it to show gain in an NRS environment. I have downloaded your article and handed it off to the folks at the New York State Education Dept. I found this all very exciting. Susan K. O'Connor Brooklyn Public Library Literacy Program Manager -----Original Message----- From: Marie Cora To: Multiple recipients of list Sent: 2/14/05 8:41 AM Subject: [NIFL-ASSESSMENT:900] REEP Discussion Begins Today! Good morning, afternoon, evening, and Happy Valentine's Day to you all! Please join us this week for our discussion of the REEP Writing Process and Rubric with Suzanne Grant and Pat Thurston, of the Arlington Education and Employment Program (REEP) in VA. The full information and the suggested preview resources for the discussion are listed for you below. Also, I wanted you to recall that Suzanne and Pat will be accompanied by several trainers-in-training of the REEP process. Welcome colleagues from REEP!! February 14 - 18 Topic: Assessing Writing, Developing Rubrics, and Developing Effective Writing Tasks Guests: Suzanne Grant and Pat Thurston, REEP Master Trainers Recommended preparations for this discussion: "The REEP Writing Story" at http://vawin.jmu.edu/vertex/article.php?v=1 <http://vawin.jmu.edu/vertex/article.php?v=1&i=1&a=2> &i=1&a=2 which discusses the development of their writing process and the accompanying rubric. "Making Sense of the REEP" at http://www.sabes.org/resources/adventures/vol15/15teller.htm which discusses one program's experience with and reflections on using the REEP process. marie cora Moderator, NIFL Assessment Discussion List, and Coordinator/Developer LINCS Assessment Special Collection at http://literacy.kent.edu/Midwest/assessment/ email@example.com -------------------------------------------------------------------- mail2web - Check your email from the web at http://mail2web.com/ .
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Mon Oct 31 2005 - 09:48:46 EST