Test Directions Overview
These instructions apply to administration of the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments for ELA and mathematics and CAST only. Do not use these instructions for administration of the CSA or the California Alternate Assessments. The Directions for Administration of the CAAs for ELA and Mathematics and the embedded performance tasks for the CAA for Science, which include directions, can be downloaded from the password-protected TOMS.
Test Administrator Tasks Before Testing
Before administering a test session, the test administrator should verify that the following tasks have been completed:
- Verify the security of the testing environment prior to beginning a test session. (Refer to the subsection Security of the Test Environment.)
- Student seats are arranged so that students cannot view each other’s answers.
- All displayed instructional materials (e.g., vocabulary charts, periodic tables, etc.) are covered or taken down.
- Post “TESTING IN PROGRESS-DO NOT DISTURB” signs outside of the testing room.
- Ensure that students do not have access to digital, electronic, or manual devices (e.g., cellphones, smart watches) during testing unless it is an approved medical support.
- Make sure each testing device or workstation has headphones.
- Verify that students have access to and use of the additional required resources specific to each assessment and content area (e.g., scratch paper for all tests, headphones for ELA, graph paper for mathematics grades six and above). Refer to the subsection Additional Required Resources for a complete list.
- Recommended: Launch secure browsers on all testing devices before students sit down to test.
- Recommended: Consider printing this section to be used on the day of testing for both the CAT and PT portions of each content area test. Remember that for Smarter Balanced assessments, the CAT and PT portions are considered two unique tests and, as such, adherence to the process that follows is needed when initiating both tests.
To ensure that all students are tested under the same conditions, the test administrator should adhere strictly to the script for administering the test unless a student is assigned the non-embedded designated support for Simplified Test Directions, which is described in the Smarter Balanced Usability, Accessibility, and Accommodations Guidelines. The script can be found in the shaded boxes on pages in this chapter. When asked, the test administrator should answer questions raised by students but should never help the class or individual students with specific test items. No test items can be read to any student for any content area, unless the student is assigned a Read-Aloud non-embedded designated support or accommodation as listed in the Smarter Balanced Usability, Accessibility, and Accommodations Guidelines.
If the class is resuming a test and the test administrator is sure that all students are able to log on without hearing the logon directions again, the test administrator may skip the italicized portions of the directions.
All directions that a test administrator needs to read to students are indicated by the word “SAY” and are in boxes so they stand out from the regular text. They should be read exactly as they are written, using a natural tone and manner (except for students assigned the Simplified Test Directions non-embedded designated support). If the test administrator makes a mistake in reading a direction, the test administrator should stop and say, “I made a mistake. Listen again.” Then the direction should be reread.
The test administrator should try to maintain a natural classroom atmosphere during the test administration. Before each test begins, the test administrator should encourage students to do their best.
Any time a student logs on to the testing system, the test administrator should follow this script. This includes logging on to complete the CAT items or the PT for the Smarter Balanced assessments as well as to the CAST.