Smarter Updates

Learn more about Smarter Balanced’s latest assessment resources and releases, and updates around supports available to schools, districts, and member states.

COVID-19 News, Resources, and Updates from Across the U.S.

COVID-19 News, Resources, and Updates from Smarter Balanced States

COVID-19 is causing school closures, shifts to e-learning, and changes in testing schedules, creating unprecedented challenges for educators and families. Below, we’ve compiled links to national and Smarter Balanced members’ state information pages as a means to leverage knowledge across the consortium. NationalU.S. Department of Education COVID-19 (“Coronavirus”) Information and Resources for Schools and School PersonnelEducation…

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Practice Tests and Sample Items help students and teachers understand how the test works.

Newly Released Sample Questions Can Help Support Instruction

The Smarter Balanced Sample Items Website now includes 104 newly released test questions that previously appeared on the year-end (summative) math and English language arts tests in grades 3-8 and high school.  Educators can use the sample test questions to better understand how Smarter Balanced measures college and career ready content and what students need to know and do. The newly released questions add to the nearly…

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Making Sense of Test-taking by Touch: Smarter Balanced Braille Accommodations.

Making Sense of Test-taking by Touch

Smarter Balanced Braille Accommodations Give Visually Impaired Students the Opportunity to Demonstrate What They Know and Can Do, Equitably Braille is a nearly 200 year old, haptic (touch-based) system for reading and writing that has given millions of people with vision impairment the ability to more effectively access education and contribute to the literary canon….

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Smarter Balanced Year in Review 2019.

Smarter Balanced Year in Review 2019

Supporting Educators and Students at a Whole New Level This was a busy year—and decade—at Smarter Balanced! We’ll ring out the “teens” invigorated by our commitment to improving learning outcomes for students. And in June, we’ll celebrate our 10th anniversary, when states and territories banded together to develop our world-class assessment system.  In 2019, we released a suite of…

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Top 5 Instructional Resources Created by Educators, for Educators for American Education Week

Top 5 Instructional Resources Created by Educators, for Educators

NOTE: The Smarter Balanced Digital Library was decommissioned. Please visit Tools for Teachers, the new home for instructional resources and professional learning. Resources to Use in the Classroom for American Education Week (and All Year Long!) November 18-22 is American Education Week. Thank you to all the teachers who make a difference every day in the…

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Top Ten Instructional Resources for the Scariest Week of the School Year.

Top Ten Instructional Resources for the Scariest Week of the School Year

NOTE: The Smarter Balanced Digital Library was decommissioned. Please visit Tools for Teachers, the new home for instructional resources and professional learning. From Amontillado to Zombie, the Digital Library has you covered A-Z A round up of creepy, scary, monster-filled Smarter Balanced Digital Library Instructional Resources perfect for classroom use during Halloween week. “Monster” Capitalization Rules (ELA,…

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Home page of the Smarter Content Explorer web site includes a "Welcome Educators" message and a menu to select grade, subject, claim, target, and standard.

Smarter Content Explorer: Easy-to-Use Tool for Educators

Smarter Content Explorer Website Shows How Smarter Balanced Assesses Academic Standards Smarter Content Explorer is now available! This easy-to-navigate Website helps teachers interpret student results by understanding the claims, targets, and standards that are being assessed. The new website includes information about what knowledge and skills are essential for college and career readiness. Teachers can…

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Pace Study Cover: Smarter Balanced is Comparable Indicator of College Success.

PACE Study in California Assesses Smarter Balanced for College Success

New Study of UC & CSU Students Finds Smarter Balanced Test is Comparable Indicator of College Success The Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE) research center has released a new study called, “Predicting College Success: How Do Different High School Assessments Measure Up?” The study, which focuses on University of California and California State University…

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Smarter Balanced partnered with the California Department of Education to develop California Starting Smarter which launched publicly on April 24.

New Starting Smarter Website Launches

Resources to Help Parents Understand Score Reports and to Boost Learning at Home Last week, Smarter Balanced released the new Starting Smarter Website, which helps parents of children in grades 3-8 and high school use state score reports to better understand their child’s strengths and areas in need of improvement. This empowers parents to start a meaningful…

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Three Tools to Help You (and Your Students) Get to Know the Smarter Balanced Summative Test: Training Test, Practice Test, and Sample Item.

Three Tools to Help You (and Your Students) Get to Know the Summative Test

Training Test, Practice Test, and Sample Items and When to Use Them Elizabeth Johnston, Guest BloggerEnglish Language Arts Teacher (7th Grade) With all the different tools and resources available to help us get familiar with the summative test, it can be confusing what the best use is for each one. Here is a summary of…

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