Modifications in the way assessments are designed or administered so that students with disabilities (SWD) and limited English proficient students can be included in the assessment.
The process of linking concepts, content standards and performance standards to assessment, instruction, and learning in classrooms.
Alternative Assessment*
An assessment that requires students to generate a response to a question rather than choose from a set of responses provided to them.
Ancillary Standard
Content standards related to power standards.
Analytic Scoring*
Evaluating student work across multiple dimensions of performance rather than from an overall impression (holistic scoring).
Anchor Activity
Student learning activities that are ongoing and connected to central enduring and essential understandings. Anchor activities are used to keep students independently engaged while the teacher carries out learning activities with others.
The informal and formal processes of gathering, describing, or quantifying information about performance related to concepts, content and skills for purposes of instruction and demonstrating learning outcomes. Formative assessments should be linked to guiding questions, summative assessments link to the essential questions that drive study.
Assessment of Learning
Assessments that happen after learning is supposed to have occurred to determine if it did, used to make statements of student learning status (grades, tests, exams, etc.).
Assessment for Learning
Assessments that happen while learning is still underway, used to provide feedback so they can improve
Assessment System*
The combination of multiple assessments into a comprehensive reporting format that produces comprehensive, credible, dependable information upon which important decisions can be made about students, schools, districts, or states.
A sample of student work that exemplifies a specific level of performance.
Authentic Performance Assessment
An assessment that requires the application of knowledge and skills in the form of a complex product through real life tasks.
Backwards Design
The design process should begin with identifying the desired results and then "work backwards" to develop instruction rather than the traditional approach which is to define what topics need to be covered.
A detailed description of student performance expected at particular ages, grades, or development levels.
Classroom Assessment*
An assessment developed, administered, and scored by a teacher or set of teachers with the purpose of evaluating individual or classroom student performance on a topic.
Community of Learners
Classrooms and schools where norms encourage participation, inquiry, reflection, and analysis.
Mental construct or organizing idea that categorizes a variety of examples. Although the examples may differ in context, they have common attributes. Symmetry, for example, is a concept that is exemplified by many different examples, but all examples display the attribute of balance. Concepts are timeless, universal, abstract, and broad.
Constructed Response
Assessment that asks a student to perform or produce to demonstrate knowledge and skills. Such assessments will not have one right answer, but instead will result in student work that is across a range of quality.
Content Standards*
Broadly stated expectations of what students should know and be able to do in particular subjects and grade levels.
Guidelines, rules, characteristics, or dimensions that are used to judge the quality of student performances.
Criterion-Referenced Assessment*
An assessment where an individual's performance is compared to the specific learning objective or performance standard and not to the performance of other students.
Curriculum Mapping
Curriculum mapping is a process by which data regarding: what must be taught; what is actually taught; and, how well what must be taught was learned are collected and analyzed across classrooms, content areas, and grade-levels.
Diary Map
A diary map is one of the products of the curriculum mapping process. A diary map is created when a teacher updates a projection map with "diary entries" that reflect what actually happened within the instructional program.
Differentiation is a philosophy or mindset in which a teacher provides multiple paths related to content, process and product in order to meet the needs of diverse learners with respect to interest, readiness and learning profiles.
Desired knowledge or skills measured in an assessment and usually represented in a scoring rubric.
Enduring Understanding
Broad generalizations and principles that connect two or more concepts in a statement of relationship.
Students who are engaged are involved in their own learning. The joy of learning inspires the persistence to accomplish the desired goals even in the face of difficulty (Schlecty, 2002). When educators equip students with the tools to become self-motivated, real learning engagement takes place (Wasserstein, 1995). "Schlecty (2002) groups design qualities that foster student engagement into ten categories: Content and Substance, Organization of Knowledge, Product Focus, Clear and Compelling Product Standards, Safe Environment, Affirmation of Performance, Affiliation, Novelty and Variety, Choice, and Authenticity.
Equity is the concern for fairness, i.e., that assessments are free from bias or favoritism.
Essential Knowledge
What students need to know from unpacked content standards.
Essential Question
Questions that are developed in order to engage student learning. Essential questions are directly tied to essential understandings.
Essential Skills
Specific competencies required for complex process performance.
Essential Understanding
Statements that are used to focus learning. Essential understandings are derived through making connections between topics and enduring understandings.
Essential Vocabulary
Key content and process vocabulary related to the unit.
When used for most educational settings, evaluation means to measure, compare, and judge the quality of student work, schools, or a specific educational program.
Pre-planned, open-ended experiences that emerge from learning goals and student interests and extend opportunities for learning beyond core content and the classroom.
Flexible Grouping
Grouping strategy where student membership is continuously evaluated and changed based on multiple criteria. Flexible grouping ensures that students are not placed in a "track."
Formative Assessment
An assessment intended to inform teachers and students on how to improve their learning.
Varied approaches to arranging students for effective work in the classroom that accommodate student interests, questions, learning preferences, and prior knowledge and skill.
Habits of Mind (of an Adult Working in the Discipline)
Values, attitudes, and skills of an adult working in a discipline relating to her/his outlook on knowledge and learning and to ways of thinking and acting.
Holistic Scoring*
Evaluating student work in which the score is based on an overall impression of student performance rather than multiple dimensions of performance (analytic scoring).
A process for answering questions and solving problems based on facts and observations.
Instructional Model
Prescriptive teaching approach and strategies designed to accomplish particular instructional goals.
Instructional Strategy
Methods used to introduce, explain, demonstrate, model, coach, or guide in the classroom.
An individual question or exercise in an assessment or evaluative instrument.
Lifelong-learner Standard
A standard designed to provide students with a foundation for lifelong inquiry and learning.
K-12 concept
A K-12 concept is one or two words that are broad and abstract, timeless, universal in application and can be used to integrate the big picture across disciplines.
Norm-Referenced Assessment*
An assessment where student performance or performances are compared to a larger group.
Opportunity to Learn*
To provide students with the teachers, materials, facilities, and instructional experiences that will enable them to achieve high standards.
Pacing Guide
A pacing guide typically describes what units will be taught and the order and timeframe in which they will be taught. A pacing guide does not include all of the elements of a projection map. Pacing guides are typically developed within a single grade-level or course.
Performance Assessment
An assessment that requires use of knowledge and skills in the form of a complex product.
Performance Standards*
Explicit definitions of what students must do to demonstrate proficiency at a specific level on the content standards.
A representative collection of student work that includes student reflection.
Portfolio Assessment*
A portfolio is an assessment when the assessment purpose is defined, criteria for selection of work are made clear, and criteria for assessing the collection or individual pieces of work are identified.
Power Standards
A subset of standards that represents what students must know, understand, and be able to do within a particular context in order to be successful in school, life, and on state and division assessments warranting marked focus and time.
An assessment used to identify prior knowledge and misconceptions before starting a new unit.
Projection Map
A projection map is one of the products of the curriculum mapping process. A projection map represents what is expected to happen within the instructional program. Projection maps are updated throughout the course of the school year, becoming diary maps over time.
A person who evaluates or judges student performance on an assessment against specific criteria.
Rater Training*
The process of educating raters to evaluate student work and produce dependable scores.
The degree to which the results of an assessment are dependable and consistently measure particular student knowledge and/or skills.
A detailed description of student work expectations describing varied levels of student achievement used to provide specific feedback to students.
Instructional support that helps assure learner success while acquiring new skills and information or while working in areas of challenge.
Values given to student performance.
Scope and Sequence Guide
A scope and sequence guide typically represents the goals for a curriculum area with specific standards for each grade level.
A person who evaluates or judges student performance on an assessment against specific criteria.
Scoring Guide
A guide used to score performance assessments in a reliable, fair, and valid manner and is generally composed of dimensions for judging student performance, a scale for rating performances on each dimension, and standards of excellence for specified performance levels.
Selected Response
Assessment where responses to an item, questions or prompts are selected from a list of possible responses and placed against a set answer key.
The broadest of a family of terms referring to statements of expectations for student learning, including content standards, performance standards, and benchmarks.
A consistent set of procedures for designing, administering, and scoring an assessment.
Students With Disabilities (SWD)*
A broadly defined group of students with physical and/or mental impairments such as blindness or learning disabilities that might make it more difficult for them to do well on assessments without accommodations or adaptations.
Summative Assessment
Assessments used to sum up achievement, used for marking and grading.
An activity, exercise, or question requiring students to solve a specific problem or demonstrate knowledge of specific topics or processes.
The extent to which an assessment measures what it is supposed to measure and the extent to which inferences and actions made on the basis of test scores are appropriate and accurate.

* Source: CRESST