Smarter Balanced, the organization that is designing the Common Core assessments for California and two dozen other member states, released sample test items for parents and teachers last week. As expected, they’re anything but your father’s multiple choice.
If all goes on schedule, beginning in 2014-15 students will use computers to take tests designed to measure their performance on the Common Core standards that California and most states adopted two years ago. The new tests will involve watching videos, using cursors to draw or move items and writing reports after doing research online.
Advocates of Common Core have argued that the standards are challenging not just because of what students must know but also how they must demonstrate that they know it. The questions certainly reflect that challenge.