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Beyond the Bubble Test: How Performance Assessments Support 21st Century Learning

Beyond the Bubble Test: How Performance Assessments Support 21st Century Learning

Linda Darling-Hammond, Frank Adamson

ISBN: 978-1-118-45618-7 June 2014 Jossey-Bass 464 Pages


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Performance assessment is a hot topic in school systems, and educators continue to analyze its costs, benefits, and feasibility as a replacement for high-stakes testing. Until now, researchers and policymakers have had to dig to find out what we know and what we still have to learn about performance assessment. Beyond the Bubble Test: How Performance Assessments Support 21st Century Learning synthesizes the latest findings in the field, and not a moment too soon.

Statistics indicate that the United States is in danger of falling behind if it fails to adapt to our changing world. The memory and recall strategies of traditional testing are no longer adequate to equip our students with the skills they need to excel in the global economy. Instead teachers need to engage students in deeper learning, assessing their ability to use higher-order skills.

Skills like synthesizing information, understanding evidence, and critical problem-solving are not achieved when we teach to multiple-choice exams. Examples in Beyond the Bubble Test paint a useful picture of how schools can begin to supplement traditional tests with something that works better. This book provides new perspectives on current performance assessment research, plus an incisive look at what’s possible at the local and state levels.

Linda Darling-Hammond, with a team of leading scholars, bring together lessons learned, new directions, and solid recommendations into a single, readily accessible compendium. Beyond the Bubble Test situates the current debate on performance assessment within the context of testing in the United States. This comprehensive resource also looks beyond our U.S. borders to Singapore, Hong Kong, and other places whose reform-mindedness can serve as an example to us.

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Acknowledgments vii

The Authors ix

1 Introduction: The Rationale and Context for Performance Assessment 1
Linda Darling-Hammond

Part o n e : Through a Looking Glass: Performance Assessment Past, Present, and Future 15

2 Looking Back: Performance Assessment in an Era of Standards-Based Educational Accountability 17
Brian Stecher

3 Where We Are Now: Lessons Learned and Emerging Directions 53
Raymond Pecheone and Stuart Kahl with the Assistance of Jillian Chingos and Ann Jaquith

4. Reaching Out: International Benchmarks for Performance Assessment 93
Linda Darling-Hammond with the Assistance of Laura Wentworth

Part t w o : Advances in Performance Assessment: Assessing and Supporting Learning 131

5 Performance Assessment: The State of the Art 133
Suzanne Lane

6 Adapting Performance Assessments for English Language Learners 185
Jamal Abedi

7 Supporting Teacher Learning through Performance Assessment 207
Linda Darling-Hammond and Beverly Falk

Part t h r e e : Policy and Performance Assessment: Developing Systems That Can Work 237

8 A New Conceptual Framework for Cost Analysis 239
Lawrence O. Picus, Frank Adamson, William Montague, and Margaret Owens

9 Investing in Assessments of Deeper Learning: The Costs and Benefits of Tests That Help Students Learn 259
Barry Topol, John Olson, Ed Roeber, Linda Darling-Hammond, and Frank Adamson

10 Building Systems of Assessment for Deeper Learning 277
David T. Conley and Linda Darling-Hammond

11 Concluding Thoughts: Creating Next-Generation Assessments That Last 311
Linda Darling-Hammond, Frank Adamson, and Thomas Toch

Appendix A: State Performance Tasks 323

Appendix B: New Approaches to Performance Assessment 353

Appendix C: A Framework for Measuring the Costs, Expenditures, and Benefits of Performance Assessment 363

Appendix D: Spending for Interim Testing at the Local District Level 377

Notes 383

References 387

Name Index 423

Subject Index 429