Appendix A. Frequently Used Terms

This table defines frequently used terms that are related to the ELPAC.

Term Definition

Accommodation

Change in procedures or materials that increase equitable access during the administration of the ELPAC. Assessment accommodations generate valid assessment results for students who need them; they allow these students to show what they know and can do. Accommodations are available for students with documented IEPs or Section 504 plans. Approved accommodations do not compromise the learning expectations, construct, grade-level standard, or intended outcome of the assessments.

Refer to the California Assessment Accessibility Resources Matrix for complete information.

Appeal

Authorized users—LEA ELPAC coordinators and site ELPAC coordinators—may submit and view requests for resetting, re-opening, or invalidating students’ alternate assessments in accordance with state policy. These requests must result from a test security incident or incorrect test setting that impacted alternate testing that is reported using the STAIRS/‌Appeals process; Appeals are also submitted through TOMS. Appeal requests must be approved either by the CDE (Grace Period Extension or Invalidate) or CalTAC (Reset, Restore, and Re-open).

Break

Pause in testing session—There is no limit on the number of breaks or the length of a break that a student may be given according to the student’s unique needs. However, for some portions of the test, breaks of more than 20 minutes will prevent the student from returning to items already attempted by the student.

Site ELPAC Coordinator

School staff member responsible for monitoring the test schedule, process, and TEs. Site ELPAC coordinators are also responsible for ensuring that TEs have been appropriately trained and that testing is conducted in accordance with the test security and other established policies and procedures. Site ELPAC coordinators must have a signed ELPAC Test Security Agreement and Test Security Affidavit in TOMS.

Designated Supports

Accessibility resource of the assessments available for use by any student for whom the need has been indicated by an educator (or team of educators working with the parent/‌guardian and student). Refer to the California Assessment Accessibility Resources Matrix for complete information.

Grace Period Extension

An Appeal that allows the student to review previously answered questions upon logging back on to the assessment after the expiration of the pause rule.

Note: A grace period extension will only be granted in cases where there was a disruption to a test session, such as a technical difficulty, fire drill, schoolwide power outage, earthquake, or other act beyond the control of the test administrator.

Item

A test question or stimulus presented to a student to elicit a response.

LEA ELPAC Coordinator

LEA-level staff member who is responsible for the overall administration of the Alternate ELPAC assessments in an LEA. LEA ELPAC coordinators should ensure that the site ELPAC coordinators and TEs in the LEA are appropriately trained and aware of policies and procedures. LEA ELPAC coordinators are designated by LEA superintendents or the administrator of an independently testing charter school and must have a signed ELPAC Test Security Agreement and Test Security Affidavit in TOMS.

Pause

Action taken by a student or TE to temporarily halt the test during any part of the test, as needed. The test can be paused and resumed as many times as necessary to allow the student to show what the student knows. The student also may choose to pause and resume over the course of a day, or days, throughout the testing window.

The TE can make the decision to pause and resume the test administration if the student is no longer engaged, is not actively participating, or is showing signs of behavioral or functional concerns related to the test.

When a test is paused, the TE, on behalf of the student, must log back on to resume testing. Upon resumption, the student is directed automatically to the first page that has an unanswered item. Previously answered items can be revisited within the current test segment, but not in prior segments.

Re-open

A specific Appeal for the Alternate ELPAC Operational Field Test in the Appeals System. It applies to a test that has already been submitted or has expired and allows the student to access the previously closed test.

For example, a domain(s) may be re-opened if a student started a test and became ill and was unable to resume testing until after the testing opportunity expired.

Permission for a Re-open is initiated by first reporting an incident and then submitting an Appeal using the online STAIRS/Appeals process through TOMS. Refer to the CAASPP and ELPAC Security Incidents and Appeals Procedure Guide for more information on the Appeals process.

Reset

A specific Appeal for the Alternate ELPAC Operational Field Test in the Appeals System. Resetting a student’s test removes that test from the system and enables the student to start a new test. Any work previously done on the test would be lost.

Valid reasons for a reset would be if a student’s test event was administered inconsistently with the student’s IEP (this would include both embedded and non-embedded accommodations).

Permission for a Reset is initiated by first reporting an incident and then submitting an Appeal using the online STAIRS/‌Appeals process in TOMS. Refer to the CAASPP and ELPAC Security Incidents and Appeals Procedure Guide for more information on the Appeals process.

Restore

A Restore Appeal is a specific appeal type for the Alternate ELPAC Operational Field Test in the Appeals System that restores a test from the “Reset” status to its prior status. This action can only be performed on assessments that have been reset following a Reset Appeal.

An LEA ELPAC coordinator must contact CalTAC to submit a Restore Appeal on behalf of the LEA. The CDE approves a Restore Appeal and grants permission to restore a test(s). Refer to the CAASPP and ELPAC Security Incidents and Appeals Procedure Guide for more information on the Appeals process.

Secure Browser

A web browser that is downloaded and installed on a device prior to a student beginning the test. The secure browser is specifically designed for use with the ELPAC online assessments to provide secure access and prevent students from accessing specific hardware and software functions (for example, other web browsers, screenshot programs) that are not allowed during the assessments.

STAIRS/‌Appeals Process

The means by which LEAs and schools report a test security incident or other testing issue that interferes with the administration and completion of the alternate assessments and then, if required, submit an Appeal request. The first step is reporting the incident using the STAIRS/Appeals process in TOMS; an Appeal cannot be requested without the submission of this web form. The system returns an email with a summary of the information submitted that the recipient should retain for at least a year. The STAIRS/Appeals process is used to report incidents that occur with Alternate ELPAC Operational Field Test.

Session

A timeframe in which students actively test in a single sitting. A test session may vary per domain and type of administration (group versus one-on-one). The Alternate ELPAC Operational Field Test tests are not timed, and an individual student may need more or less time overall. Further, individual students will have unique needs regarding the length of a test session.

SSID

A unique, non-personally-identifiable number linked to a given individual student within the California public kindergarten through grade twelve educational system. SSIDs are used to maintain data on individual students, such as linking students to statewide assessment scores and tracking students in and out of schools and LEAs to determine more accurate dropout and graduation rates.

Stimulus or Stimuli

Material or materials used in the test context that form the basis for students to answer connected test items. Many items or tasks for the assessments include a stimulus along with a set of questions to which the student responds. Examples of stimuli include traditional reading passages or texts viewed on a computer screen.

TE

An employee or contractor of an LEA or of a nonpublic, nonsectarian school who has been trained to administer the Alternate ELPAC Operational Field Test in a secure manner in compliance with the policies and procedures outlined in this manual and the secure DFA. TEs are required to sign the ELPAC Test Security Affidavit in TOMS.

TOMS

The management system used for the CAASPP and ELPAC assessments. This is the system through which users interact with and inform the test delivery system. This management system provides administrators with the tools to add and manage users and students participating in the Alternate ELPAC Operational Field Test and Smarter Balanced assessments, including assigning tests and student test settings, ordering test materials, and setting user roles. This system uses a role-specific design to restrict access to certain tools and applications based on the user’s designated role.

Refer to the CAASPP and ELPAC Test Operations Management System User Guide for additional information.

Testing Breach

A security event that poses a threat to the validity of the alternate assessments. Examples may include such situations as a release of secure materials or a security or system risk. These circumstances have external implications for ETS, the CDE, or both, and may result in a decision to remove the test item(s) from the available secure bank. The LEA ELPAC coordinator must report the breach by calling CalTAC at 800-955-2954. In addition, the LEA ELPAC coordinator must report the incident in STAIRS within 24 hours.

For more information on how to proceed using the STAIRS/Appeals process when an incident has occurred, please refer to the subsection Using the Security and Test Administration Incident Reporting System of this manual and the CAASPP and ELPAC Security Incidents and Appeals Procedure Guide.

Testing Irregularity

An unusual circumstance that impacts an individual or group of students who are taking the Alternate ELPAC Operational Field Test and may potentially affect student performance on the tests, test security, or test validity. These circumstances can be corrected and contained at the local level but are reported using the STAIRS/Appeals process for resolution of the Appeal.

For specific details on how to proceed using the STAIRS/‌Appeals process when an incident has occurred, please refer to the subsection Using the Security and Test Administration Incident Reporting System of this manual and the CAASPP and ELPAC Security Incidents and Appeals Procedure Guide.

Universal Tools

Resources available to all students based on student preference and selection. Refer to the California Assessment Accessibility Resources Matrix for complete information.

Unlisted Resources

An instructional resource that a student regularly uses in daily instruction, assessment, or both that has not been previously identified as a universal tool, designated support, or accommodation. Unlisted resources shall be made available if specified in the eligible student’s IEP or Section 504 plan and only on approval by the CDE.

Refer to the California Assessment Accessibility Resources Matrix for complete information.