Aligning an early childhood assessment to state kindergarten content standards: Application of a nationally recognized alignment framework

  • Roach A
  • McGrath D
  • Wixson C
 et al. 
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This article describes an alignment study conducted to evaluate the alignment between Indiana's Kindergarten content standards and items on the Indiana Standards Tool for Alternate Reporting. Alignment is the extent to which standards and assessments are in agreement, working together to guide educators' efforts to support children's learning and development. The alignment process in this study represented a modification of Webb's nationally recognized method of alignment analysis to early childhood assessments and standards. The alignment panel (N = 13) in this study consisted of early childhood educators and educational leaders from all geographic regions of the state. Panel members were asked to rate the depth of knowledge (DOK) stage of each objective in Kindergarten standards; rate the DOK stage for each item on the ISTAR rating scale; and identify the one or two objectives from the standards to which each ISTAR item corresponded. Analysis of the panel's responses suggested the ISTAR inconsistently conformed to Webb's DOK consistency and ROK correspondence criteria for alignment. A promising finding was the strong alignment of the ISTAR Level F1 and F2 scales to the Kindergarten standards. This result provided evidence of the developmental continuum of skills and knowledge that are assessed by the ISTAR items. (Contains 5 tables and 9 figures.)

Author-supplied keywords

  • Accountability
  • Alignment
  • Early childhood

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  • Andrew T. Roach

  • Dawn McGrath

  • Corinne Wixson

  • Devadrita Talapatra

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