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Part of IRA 2013 San Antonio

Institute 19: Assessment in the Era of the Common Core State Standards

Apr 19, 2013 in San Antonio, TX

Urgency and Purpose of this Institute:

In the school year of 2015—2016, a new generation of assessments will be administered to students from grades 3 to 12 in the majority of American states and schools. Questions are many about the content and consequences of these assessments. This preconvention institute is designed to answer pressing questions of educational leaders in states, districts, and schools about the new assessments. The presenters include the primary architect of the Common Core, leaders in national assessment and reform efforts, leading researchers on issues of assessment and instruction of English Learners, and teacher educators/researchers and state leaders who are working on Common Core implementations.

Read Teachability's interview with Freddy Hiebert about this precon Lifting the Curtain on the Common Core Assessments at IRA 2013.

How this Institute will support educational leaders in supporting students:       

The Institute will support educational leaders in becoming knowledgeable about the Common Core assessments through five "formal" contexts and, we anticipate, innumerable informal contexts as teachers, district and state personnel, educational publishers, administrators, teacher educators, researchers, nonprofit leaders, community leaders, and parents interact with one another over the course of the day and, we hope, in social media venues after IRA.


Elfrieda "Freddy" H. Hiebert, TextProject & University of California, Santa Cruz


David Coleman, College Board
David Francis, University of Houston
Heidi Anne Mesmer, Virginia Tech
Melanie Kuhn, Boston University
P. David Pearson, University of California, Berkeley
Victoria Risko, Vanderbilt University
Barbara Kapinus, Smarter Balanced
Karen Wixson, University of North Carolina, Greensboro
Peter Afflerbach, University of Maryland
Pamela Mason, Harvard University
Lori DiGisi, Framingham Public Schools
Kenji Hakuta, Stanford University
Bonnie Hain, Achieve
Cindy Parker, Kentucky Department of Education

Webinar Series

Virtual Institute on Assessment and the Common Core

TextProject is inviting you to attend a virtual institute on Assessments for the Common Core State Standards. The institute focuses on the new assessments that will be administered in grades 3 to 12 in the majority of American states, beginning in the 2014-2015 school year. Presentations at an institute on this topic at the International Reading Association (2013) were videotaped with generous funding from the National Center for Literacy Education/National Council of Teachers of English. The presenters included the primary architect of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) (David Coleman), leaders in national assessment and reform efforts (P. David Pearson, Peter Afflerbach, & Karen Wixson), and leaders in national projects on the assessment and instruction of English Learners (David Francis & Kenji Hakuta).

TextProject’s Virtual Institute on CCSS Assessments ensures that educators have these presentations available to use in professional development. Beginning in the first week of July of 2013, we will be releasing videotaped presentations from the Institute on the TextProject YouTube channel. By the end of the summer of 2013, all six of the presentations will be available. PowerPoints of presentations (if part of a presentation) are already available. A Frankly Freddy column, in which Freddy Hiebert summarizes her interpretations of a presentation’s primary themes, will accompany the release of each video.

View additional materials for IRA 2013, Institute 19: Assessment in the Era of the Common Core State Standards

Virtual Institute: Assessments and the Common Core: An Overview

Download a collection of Freddy's responses to the presentations recorded at Institute 19 at the 2013 International Reading Association annual conference.

Institute 19: Assessments in the Era of the Common Core State Standards.

The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) mean that the assessments of many states will be replaced by those developed by two state-led consortia—PARCC and Smarter Balanced. The CCSS include some departures from previous state standards, such as an increased emphasis on evidence-based comprehension, addition of a standard devoted to students’ capacity with complex text, and a balance of narrative and informational texts. As well as new directions in content, the new assessments may represent a shift in the tasks from many previous state assessments. PARCC and Smarter Balanced assessments are modeled after those of the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). The passages of the NAEP are more extended than texts of many state assessments. Further, the NAEP includes open-ended response questions, not simply multiple-choice questions.

Many educators have questions and apprehensions about the new assessments. In this Virtual Institute on Assessments and the Common Core, educators get to view the presentations of national experts who were involved in the design of the CCSS and others who have been involved in the design of assessments, including PARCC and Smarter Balanced.

These presentations were originally given as part of an institute at the International Reading Association in May, 2013. The National Council of Teachers of English generously paid for the presentations to be videotaped. I facilitated the Institute presentations and also have written summaries of the presentations to serve as overviews for viewing.

In viewing the presentations, participants are encouraged to follow the sequence of the Institute. Frequently, a speaker refers to comments made by previous speakers. Opportunities to interact with colleagues about ideas in the Virtual Institute presentations are strongly encouraged (breakout discussions were a feature of the original Institute).

These presentations are intended to support implementation of the CCSS in educational units and to prepare students for the new assessments. As these presentations indicate (as well as other resources on assessment at TextProject.org), educators don’t have to wait for the assessment results in 2016 to understand the content and tasks of the new assessments.

Click here for more information about Institute 19: Assessments in the Era of the Common Core State Standards.

IRA 2013 - Institute 19 Background Reading

Background reading for Institute 19, IRA 2013.

IRA 2013 - Institute 19 Presentation Slides

Presentation slides from IRA 2013 - Institute 19: Assessment in the Era of the Common Core State Standards.