September 19th, 2016
You may be familiar with paper and pencil tests where all students are asked the same questions and spend a fixed amount of time taking the test. MAP is different. MAP is a computer adaptive test, which means every K-8 student gets a unique set of test questions based on responses to previous questions. As the student answers correctly, questions get harder. If the student answers incorrectly, the questions get easier. By the end of the test, most students will answer about half the questions correctly. MAP can follow students wherever they are starting from, regardless of the grade they are in. For instance, if a third grader is actually reading like a fifth grader, MAP will be able to identify that. Or, if a fifth grader is doing math like a third grader, MAP will identify that. Both things are incredibly important for our teachers to know, so that they can plan instruction efficiently. MAP covers reading, language usage, and math.
When we talk about high-stakes tests, usually we’re talking about a state test. These are designed to measure what students already know, based on what is expected at their grade level, as a way to measure grade-level proficiency. MAP is designed to measure student achievement in the moment, and growth over time, regardless of grade level, so it is quite different. Another difference is the timeliness of the results. While state tests usually return information in the fall after the test is taken, MAP gives quick feedback to our teachers, administrators, students and parents. Teachers receive immediate results with MAP that show what students know and what they are ready to learn. The results can be used to help personalize lessons at the appropriate level for the students. One similarity is that MAP aligns to the same standards in a given state as the state tests, so both measure similar content.
A link to the testing schedule has been provided below for parents so that you know which two or three mornings your student will be MAP testing over the next couple of weeks. We ask parents to please make sure that your child is well rested, eats a good breakfast, and arrives to school on time so that we can create the best assessment environment for each child.MAP-testing-schedule.pdf