NIFL-ASSESSMENT 2005: [NIFL-ASSESSMENT:928] RE: separate rubric

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From: Howard Dooley (hdooley@riral.org)
Date: Tue Feb 22 2005 - 22:49:35 EST


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From: "Howard Dooley" <hdooley@riral.org>
To: Multiple recipients of list <nifl-assessment@literacy.nifl.gov>
Subject: [NIFL-ASSESSMENT:928] RE: separate rubrics for ESOL and ABE
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Shauna --

The NRS guidelines state:  " The functional level descriptors describe
what a learner entering that level can do in the areas of reading and
writing, numeracy, speaking and listening and/or functional or workplace
skills. The
local program need not assess the learner in all areas, but the
assessment should be in the areas in which instruction will be focused.
If the learner is functioning at different levels in the areas, the
lowest functioning level should be the basis for initial placement."

My statement was that writing is not an area in which instruction is
focused at that level, and hence we are not required to assess it with a
uniform, standardized assessment.

Your email seemed to state that a learner must be assessed with a
standardized instrument in all instructional areas to determine the
entering functional level.  This is not true.  For another example, at
the High Intermediate ABE and Low Secondary ASE Levels, my program
provides separate Mathematics classes.  In these classes, we only assess
using the CASAS Life Skills Mathematics assessment.  Any other
assessments would not only be irrelevant, but disruptive to the
instructional process -- as well as damn annoying to the teachers and
learners!

Howard

>From the NRS Implementation Guide, pp 13 and 18:
Outcome Measures
Core Outcome Measure #1: Educational Gain
Definition: Learner completes or advances one or more educational
functioning levels from starting level measured on entry into the
program. The following tables provide entry-level descriptors for the
educational functioning levels. (Table excluded)
Applicable Population: All learners.
Collection Procedure: At intake, an individual learner's educational
functioning level is determined within the functional level descriptors,
using a uniform, standardized assessment procedure approved by the
state. The assessment procedure may be a standardized test or a
performance assessment with standardized scoring protocols. (Note that
learners designated as workbased project learners need not be assessed
in this way, as explained in Chapter I and in the definition in this
chapter).
The functional level descriptors describe what a learner entering that
level can do in the areas of reading and writing, numeracy, speaking and
listening and/or functional or workplace skills. The local program need
not assess the learner in all areas, but the assessment should be in the
areas in which instruction will be focused. If the learner is
functioning at different levels in the areas, the lowest functioning
level should be the basis for initial placement. Test benchmarks are
provided for each level as examples only and these tests do not need to
be used when assessing the learner.
To determine gain, the learner should be assessed again at least once
after a standard, instructional period, at the end of the class or at
the end of the program year, as determined by state policy. If more than
one assessment is given, the latest assessment should be used to
determine completion or advancement. An "advance" or "completion" is
recorded if, according to a subsequent assessment, the student has entry
level skills corresponding to one or more levels higher than the
incoming level in the areas initially used for placement. The lowest
functioning level should again be used to make this determination.



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