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Improving Test Performance of Students With Disabilities...On District and State Assessments
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Improving Test Performance of Students With Disabilities...On District and State Assessments

Second Edition


August 2005 | 232 pages | Corwin
Maximize the academic performance of every student, every day!

Students with disabilities must overcome unique obstacles in order to learn, and the pressure of testing often exacerbates existing challenges. With increased focus on accountability for all, how can educators properly prepare students for tests without sacrificing meaningful learning? In Improving Test Performance of Students With Disabilities . . . On District and State Assessments, Second Edition, authors Elliott and Thurlow offer numerous strategies for improving instruction, student accommodations, and test preparation, all with the goal of improving the test performance of students with disabilities. Emphasizing practical application, this comprehensive resource delineates the key elements district, school, and state professionals must consider in order to maximize the academic performance of students with disabilities.

The second edition of this insightful text addresses the impact of the No Child Left Behind Act on instruction and assessment practices for students with disabilities including those who are also English Language Learners. Featuring inserts and easy-to-follow worksheets, tables, and appendices, this indispensable resource will enable all educators to help students with disabilities learn more effectively and show what they know on the day of the test.

Improving Test Performance of Students With Disabilities . . . Second Edition includes:

o Practical steps for linking district and/or state standards with student IEP goals

o Helpful tips enabling instructors to determine the best ways to accommodate their students during instruction and on tests

o Detailed instructions for improving performance on general and alternate assessments

o Tables and worksheets to engage both instructors and learners


 
Preface
 
Acknowledgments
 
About the Authors
 
1. Maximizing the Performance of Students With Disabilities
Incorporating Standards Into Assessment and Instruction

 
Using Data to Drive Assessment and Instruction

 
Making Good Decisions About Accommodations

 
Helping the Student Prepare for Testing

 
Addressing the Needs of IEP/ELLs

 
Improving Test Performance on the General Assessment Through Instruction

 
Improving Performance on the Alternate Assessment Through Instruction

 
Generating Parent Support – and the Support of Others, Too

 
Summary

 
Test Your Knowledge

 
Resources

 
Internet Resources

 
 
2. Standards-Based Assessment and Instruction
Changing the Tide

 
Where is Lake Wobegon, Anyway?

 
Trademarks of a Standards-Based Classroom

 
Aligning IEPs With Standards

 
Linking the IEP to Standards

 
Content Standard: Reading

 
Summary

 
Test Your Knowledge

 
Reflections on Change

 
Resources

 
Internet Resources

 
 
3. Using Data to Drive Instruction
Opportunities and Challenges

 
Basic Data to Know

 
Case Study Discussion

 
Questions You Should Be Asking, Answers You Should Know

 
Principals/District Site Administrators

 
Teachers

 
Parents

 
Board Members

 
Superintendents

 
Summary

 
Test Your Knowledge

 
Reflections on Change

 
Resources

 
Internet Resources

 
 
Chapters 1-3. Self Check: Where Do I Stand?
 
4. Making Sound Accommodations Decisions
Opinions Versus Research-Based Knowledge on Accommodations

 
Court Cases and Settlements

 
Considerations in Making Decisions About Accommodations

 
Considerations in Making Decisions About Accommodations

 
Steps to Take in Identifying Accommodations for Individual Students

 
Rolling Classroom Accommodations into District and State Assessments

 
A Word About Technology Accommodations

 
A Word About Technology Accommodations

 
A Word About Technology Accommodations

 
Non-Approved Accommodations

 
Alternative Route to Diploma or Promotion

 
Summary

 
Test Your Knowledge

 
Resources

 
Reflections on Change

 
Resources

 
Internet Resources

 
 
5. Preparing Students for Testing
Causes and Considerations

 
Assessment Literacy

 
Setting Goals, Targets, and Expectations

 
Preparing Daily for the Test

 
Helping Students Become Advocates for Their Own Testing Needs

 
Summary

 
Test Your Knowledge

 
Reflections on Change

 
Resources

 
Internet Resources

 
 
6. Addressing the Needs of IEP/ELLs
Who Are IEP/ELLs?

 
Participation of IEP/ELLS in District and State Assessments

 
Accommodations

 
Assessment Performance

 
Instruction for IEP/ELLS

 
Summary

 
Test Your Knowledge

 
Reflections on Change

 
Resources

 
Internet Resources

 
 
Chapters 4-6. Self-Check: Where Do I Stand?
 
7. Improving Performance on General Assessment Through Instruction
Where the Rubber Meets the Road

 
The Realities

 
The Million Dollar Question

 
Preparing for Instruction: The Planning Pyramid

 
What Do We Know About Effective Instruction?

 
Improving Student Performance: A Model of Effective Instruction

 
Planning Instruction

 
Managing Instruction

 
Delivering Instruction

 
Evaluating Instruction

 
Summary

 
Test Your Knowledge

 
Reflections on Change

 
Resources

 
Internet Resources

 
 
8. Improving Performance on Alternate Assessments Through Instruction
Federal Requirements That Guide Alternate Assessments

 
What We Knew Then

 
Where We Are Now

 
What Has Changed

 
High Standards for Learning for Alternate Assessment Students

 
The Impact of Alternate Assessment on Instruction

 
Summary

 
Test Your Knowledge

 
Reflections on Change

 
Resources

 
Internet Resources

 
 
9. Parent Support for Student Performance
Informing Parents About Tests

 
Equipping Parents to Make Good Participation and Accommodation Decisions

 
Helping Parents Understand Test Results

 
Understanding General Test Results

 
Understanding Their Child’s Test Results

 
Summary

 
Test Your Knowledge

 
Reflections on Change

 
Resources

 
Internet Resources

 
 
Chapters 7-9. Self Check: Where Do I Stand?
 
Appendix A: Reflection on Change
 
Appendix B: Technical Assistance and Dissemination Networks
 
Index
 
Figures and Reproducible Forms
Box 1.1: Key Elements of IDEA 97 and NCLB

 
Box 1.2: Assumptions About Including Students With Disabilities

 
Box 2.1: Examples of Content and Performance Standards

 
Box 2.2: IEP Format Linking District Standards and Student Annual Goals

 
Box 2.3: Steps for Unpacking Standards

 
Box 2.4: Bloom’s Taxonomy

 
Box 2.5: A Framework for Unpacking Standards

 
Box 2.6: Unpacking Standards: Supporting the Process

 
Box 3.1: Strategies for Success (SFS) Overview

 
Box 3.2: SFS Grade Results

 
Box 3.3: Reading Program Comparison

 
Box 3.4: A Case Study

 
Box 4.1: Examples of Six Types of Assessment Accommodations

 
Box 4.2: Kyle’s Access to the General Education Curriculum With and Without Accommodations

 
Box 4.3: Summary of Selected Research Syntheses on Accommodations

 
Box 4.4: Common Instructional Accommodations, A-Z

 
Form 4.1: Classroom Accommodations Worksheet

 
Box 4.6: Student Accommodations Questionnaire

 
Box 4.7: Tracking the Effects of Accommodations

 
Box 4.8: Case Study on Tracking the Effects of Accommodations

 
Form 4.2: Form to Determine Links Between Classroom Accommodations, Classroom Testing Accommodations, and State or District Testing Accommodations

 
Box 4.9: Case Study on Making Accommodations Decisions for Instruction and Testing

 
Box 4.10: Case Study on Planning Accommodations

 
Box 5.1: Self Regulation and Time Management

 
Box 5.2: Selected Assessment Terminology and Definitions

 
Box 5.3: Points to Make in discussing the Purpose of State and District Assessments

 
Box 5.4: Example of a Test Matrix for a “Typical” Standards-Based State Test

 
Box 5.5: Example of a Test Matrix for a “Typical” Norm-Referenced Test

 
Box 5.6: Partial Test Matrix Analysis

 
Box 5.7: Considering the Unique Needs of Students Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired

 
Box 5.8: Common Test Vocabulary Terms

 
Box 5.9: Suggestions for Answering Different Types of Questions

 
Box 5.10: Self-Regulation and Time Management

 
Box 6.1: Clarification of Terminology

 
Box 6.2: Percentages of All IEP Students and IEP/ELLs by Category

 
Box 6.3: Examples of Linguistic Accommodations

 
Box 6.4: Considerations for Assessing LEP Students

 
Box 6.5: Strategies Identified as Important for IEP/ELLs

 
Box 7.1: Instructional Planning Pyramid

 
Box 7.2: Guiding Questions for the Planning Pyramid

 
Box 7.3: Some Research-Based Findings on Characteristics of Effective Instruction

 
Box 7.4: Components of Effective Instruction

 
Box 7.5: Deciding What to Teach: Think About It

 
Box 7.6: How to Teach: Think About It

 
Box 7.7: Communicate Realistic Expectations: Think About It

 
Box 7.8: Prepare for Instruction: Think About It

 
Box 7.9: Use Time Productively: Think About It

 
Box 7.10: Establishing a Positive Classroom Environment: Think About It

 
Box 7.11: Presenting Information: Think About It

 
Box 7.12: Monitoring Presentations: Think About It

 
Box 7.13: Adjusting Presentations: Think About It

 
Box 7.14: Monitor Student Understanding: Think About It

 
Box 7.15: Monitoring Engaged Time: Think About It

 
Box 7.16: Keep Records of Student Progress: Think About It

 
Box 7.17: Use Data to Make Decisions: Think About It

 
Box 8.1: Federal Documents that Clarify Alternate Assessments Performance Benchmarks

 
Box 8.2: Definitions of Basic Terms Used in Relation to Alternate Assessment

 
Box 8.3: Examples of Standards of Learning for Alternate Assessments in Massachusetts

 
Box 8.4: Examples of Instructional Idea, Strategies, and Entry Points in Massachusetts

 
Box 8.5: Selections From High School Course Outline

 
Box 9.1: A Parent Version of a Test Matrix

 
Box 9.2: Excerpt from Federation of Families Report

 
Box 9.3: Parent Questions and Answers About State and District Assessments

 
Box 9.4: NRTs Versus CRTs and Standards-Based Assessments

 
Box 9.5: Resource Centers and Materials for Parents

 
Box 9.6: Guide for Translating Testing Terminology for Parents

 
Box 9.7: Example of Information Presented in State Report

 

"This is a practical and accessible guide to improving the measurement of performance of students with disabilities that also provides concrete and research-based strategies for the inclusion of students with specialized instructional needs in the general education classroom. This is a book that should be within reach of classroom teachers and school administrators as they strive to provide effective instruction that yields measureable results."

Ronald K. Felton, Associate Superintendent
Miami Dade County Public Schools, FL

"Improving Test Performance of Students with Disabilities is a refreshing "can do" approach, grounded in research and best practice, that addresses effective instruction and proactive use of accommodations and data analysis.  It is filled with resources and "how to" techniques.  Given the current landscape of test scores and instruction, this book is a must have resource for any educator's professional library."

Christine Dominguez, Assistant Superintendent, Curriculum, Instruction & Professional Development
Long Beach Unified School District, CA

"There are no more capable people to advise school districts on improving academic performance of children with disabilities than Judy Elliott and Martha Thurlow. This book, therefore, is the definitive resource for all who are struggling to meet the challenges put forth first by IDEA 97 and now by NCLB. Simply put this is a 'must have' resource. Elliott and Thurlow have combined the most recent research with practical recommendations that go beyond improving test performance to provide the basis upon which real educational equity can be achieved for students with disabilities."

Thomas Hehir, Professor, Harvard Graduate School of Education
Former Director, Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Dept. of Education

Preview this book

Sample Materials & Chapters

Preface

Chapter 1


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