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The CBAL Reading Assessment: An Approach for Balancing Measurement and Learning Goals CBAL NCLB

Sheehan, Kathleen M.; O'Reilly, Tenaha
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Report
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Subject/Key Words:
Cognitively Based Assessment of, for, and as Learning (CBAL), No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), Scenario-Based Assessments, Reading Comprehension, 21st Century Skills


No Child Left Behind has highlighted the need for new types of assessments that not only provide high-quality evidence about what students know and can do, but also help to move learning forward. This paper describes a linked set of formative and summative reading assessments designed to address the tradeoffs inherent in these two goals. Targeted skills include the full range of competencies underlying proficient reading at the middle-school level, including both lower-order skills such as oral reading fluency and decoding, and higher-order skills such as the ability to integrate and synthesize information from multiple texts. Data collected in pilot administrations of two prototype test forms are presented. Analyses suggest that this new approach yields acceptable measurement properties while simultaneously addressing crucial learning outcomes. This paper was presented June 23, 2009 at the National Conference on Student Assessment, Los Angeles, CA.

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