Building an Interim Assessment System: A Workbook for School Districts

This workbook offers states and districts a set of questions and issues that they should consider in determining their readiness and in selecting and/or evaluating an existing interim assessment. The questions are intended to be answered by various stakeholder groups in collaboration, not by a district administrator in isolation. The workbook questions are organized into 9 sections:

  1. Goals and Vision
  2. Elements and Features 
  3. Professional Development
  4. Alignment to Standards and Curriculum
  5. Costs and Capacity
  6. Test Development and Technical Quality
  7. Administration and Scoring
  8. Reporting
  9. Evaluation
Content Comments 

Each section lays out guiding questions for consideration and for each question, rationale for why this question is important to consider and/or important follow-up questions to support a thorough analysis. Sections on professional development, cost and capacity, and report and evaluation have clear implications for supporting successful use of interim assessment. Note that the workbook doesn’t much consider the infrastructure needed to support use, beyond logistical and technical issues associated with administration, scoring, and reporting. Further, although the workbook emphasizes technical rather than socio-political aspects of implementation, its question categories do offer a reasonable set of considerations for supporting implementation, for example with regard to capacity, professional development, scoring and reporting, and on-going evaluation to improve the interim system. Leadership support perhaps is assumed but could be more visible.