Smarter Balanced Assessments


The Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium is creating new assessments to be used by many states, including Michigan, starting in the spring of 2015.

A summary of Core Components (one page overview)
Presentation (January 2012): This presentation outlines the work of the SMARTER-Balanced Assessment Consortium. It also includes the draft assessment claims for ELA and Mathematics.
Mathematics Content Specifications June 2013 - The framework for developing items, including many sample items.
English Language Arts Content Specifications - The framework for developing items, including many sample items.

Many sample items are available at this Smarter Balanced web page Scroll down to Item/Task Specifications and download the zipped files.

Examples of computer-based items from Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium are available on this page by scrolling down to "Explore sample items and performance tasks."

Practice tests are now available that simulate the on-line testing experience.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Smarter Balanced sample items and performance tasks.

Virtual mathematics manipulatives available at various sites are useful for helping students prepare for computer-enhanced testing. Three examples are:

More virtual manipulatives are listed on the 4th-5th grade Mathematics Resource wiki.


  • MDE has made the decision NOT to administer the MEAP tests in the Fall of 2014, since the Smarter Balanced Assessments will begin in the spring of 2015.
  • Opportunities to field-test the Smarter Balanced Assessments will be available to districts in the spring of 2013. Please see this linked document for more information and a web link for applying.

Examples of interactive testing items (not specifically the format that will be used for CCSS Assessment, but rather examples of what interactive testing may look like):

Technology needed for computer adaptive testing

Information on Computer Adaptive Testing
Technology Small Group Discussion Prompts - February 2012

Michigan Assessment Consortium (MAC)
The MAC has many resources on assessment