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Assessment tasks are written very broadly in order to allow access for a wide range of student abilities. Thus it is critical that teachers make the STAAR Alternate tasks accessible for each student by providing presentation supports, choosing appropriate materials, and selecting response modes that allow the student to demonstrate what has been learned. The teacher should plan the task in a manner that allows the student to perform the predetermined criteria without additional assistance. Supports ensure that a student’s disability is not a factor in his or her performance. As long as a support does not change the complexity level of the task or give the student the answer, the student can have any routinely used accommodations/supports necessary to access the task.
Although the same supports can be used during assessment that were effectively used during instruction, the materials must be different. Student performance can only be considered valid if the assessment task has not been previously practiced. The materials used during the assessment observation must vary enough from those used during instruction so that the student is not just rotely repeating an answer or response from a previous instructional session without truly demonstrating the skill. Therefore, the changes in materials should be related to the content being measured.
The "Task Specific Change in Materials/Approach from Instruction to Assessment" documents below provide guidance on the instruction that should be provided before the assessment task is planned and observed. The change in materials must maintain the complexity level of the task and result in a new experience or a different answer than is requested in the assessment observation.
- Presentation Supports and Materials (PDF updated 08/31/12)
- Task Specific Change in Materials/Approach from Instruction to Assessment
The materials used during instruction must be documented in the Description of Materials/Approach Provided During Instruction section on page 3 of the "STAAR Alternate Documentation Form of Student Performance" before the observation begins.
For additional information, contact:
Student Assessment Division