The Maine Department of Education is excited to announce the availability of released items from Maine’s 2017/18 state assessment. As educators begin to explore the released items for MEA spring 2018, we want to clarify a few inconsistencies within English Language Arts(ELA)/Literacy and Mathematics and provide some information about released items moving forward.
In grade 3 eMPowerME reading, the passage students read while completing the assessment is not available for reference. Unfortunately, the assessment vendor, Measured Progress, was unable to obtain the necessary permissions to release the passage for public use. Fortunately, the passage used is a commonly known text, Corduroy, (Freeman, D. (1987). Corduroy. Harmondsworth: Puffin Books.). Educators should pay close attention to the information contained within the released item to guide use of the materials. Moving forward, the Maine DOE has taken steps to ensure that all passages utilized in any future released items will have the necessary permissions obtained for both confidential and public release.
Additionally, when the released items first became available on 11/12/18, there was a misalignment in the numbering of the ELA/Literacy released items in the Confidential MAARS portal versus the Released Item Documents found in the Measured Progress’ WordPress site. In the MAARS released item chart, the Essay item, indicated by “Item Type” WP (writing prompt), was originally reported as Released Item #01 in all grades, followed by Reading, then Writing & Language released items.
This is an example of the way ELA/Literacy Grade 3 released items chart first appeared in the confidential MAARS portal:
In the Educator Support Materials for the eMPowerME Released Item Documents (pdf), the last 2 pages are Math and ELA/Literacy released item information charts. In the ELA/Literacy chart (Grade 3 example below), the Essay is presented last, and the numbers for Reading and Writing & Language correspond to the item numbers in the released item booklets, but not to the released item numbering in the MAARS chart above.
The placement of the Essay score (Writing Prompt/WP) has been corrected in MAARS Confidential to appear as the last item in ELA, as shown below in the sample snapshot for Grade 3:
The new, correct placement of the WP/Essay score for each grade is as follows: Grade 3=#14, Grade 4=#17, Grade 5=#14, Grades 6, 7, and 8=#16.
When the released items became available on 11/12/18, there was a constructed response (CR) item in math omitted from the MAARS confidential reports in every grade 3-8. eMPowerME math released items include multiple choice items (MC), multi-select items (MS), and one (1) constructed response item (CR) per grade level. The math CR items have now been added to MAARS Confidential and are slotted in the tables according to the placement of the CR in the released items. The Math CRs are scored in 2 parts: Concepts & Procedures Standard (CPS) and Mathematical Process Standard (MPS) as shown below in the sample snapshot for Grade 3:
NOTE: ELA/Literacy & Mathematics – The best way to align the released item numbering from the charts in MAARS to the released item PDFs is to follow the Tables on the last 2 pages of each grade level’s pdf titled “2018 Mathematics Released Item Information” and “2018 English Language Arts Released Item Information”.
Future eMPowerME Released Items:
The Maine DOE is committed to providing as many resources as possible to support instructional practice. One such support is the availability of released items. Unfortunately, the frequency in which the Maine DOE is able to release items is currently limited to 2017/2018 and 2019/2020. We will be unable to release items from the 2018/2019 test administration. There are many factors that have impacted this decision and the Maine DOE is exploring how to increase the frequency of releasing items while not increasing the amount of testing time for students. It should be noted that although released items will not be provided from the 2018/19 test administration, educators will still have access to the released items from the 2017/18 test administration in addition to the already available sample items.
Further questions can be directed to Lee Anne Larsen, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Learning Systems at 624-6628 or Leeann.Larsen@maine.gov