Frequently Asked Questions
Preparing for Administration
Which content areas does the federal government require monitoring of accommodations? Accommodation monitoring is required for all WV Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) assessments. This currently includes WESTEST 2 including Online Writing, APTA, ACT Plan and Explore and NAEP.
How many copies of the WVS.326 report are needed?
One copy of the WVS.326 is to be retained at the school and county level. The original WVS.326 is returned to the OAA. The WVS.326 records must be maintained and may be reviewed during OEPA visits.
Are students with disabilities and LEP plans given accommodations on the test?
Yes, students will be provided accommodations as outlined on their current individualized educational plans (IEPs), 504 Plans and/or Limited English Proficiency (LEP) plans documents. Documentation of the accommodations provision is collected in the WVS.326 form.
May ESL students use bilingual dictionaries?
The use of electronic translator/bilingual dictionary is an LEP accommodation. A student’s LEP Committee will determine if using a bilingual dictionary is appropriate and document the decision using the Limited English Proficiency (LEP) Assessment Participation Form. An approved list of all approved dictionaries is contained within the WV Guidelines for Participation in State Assessments. If an electronic/bilingual dictionary is allowed during assessment it may be used ONLY to present directions, stimulus material, questions, and/or answer choices verbatim for the Mathematics, Science and Social Studies Tests. An electronic translator/bilingual dictionary is used to present the DIRECTIONS ONLY on the Reading Language Arts Test.
For WESTEST 2 and APTA must students be tested on grade level?
Yes, students must be tested at the grade level at which they are enrolled. The use of off grade-level testing is not permitted for any student.
If WESTEST 2 is to be read to a student as part of his/her IEP/504 accommodations, will a WESTEST 2 test booklet be provided for the reader?
Yes, a test booklet must be provided for the reader. That test booklet must be indicated and signed for on the Security Checklist each day, following the same procedures used for all other WESTEST 2 test booklets. All WESTEST 2 test booklets used by readers must be returned to the secure locked location(s) each day.
When the county sends the "pre-slug" data to the state, what types of problems should we be concerned with in regard to students with disabilities and any accommodations?
Data errors are the largest problem that occurs. Our system relies upon the data entered into WVEIS for the preparation of assessment materials. The accuracy of the data file is reliant upon the correct entry of all student information into WVEIS.
The OAA has many deadlines for pulling data from WVEIS. All districts are provided a list of these dates from Marshall Patton, Executive Director of Office of Technology Information. For example, the first WESTEST 2 testing pre-slug will be sent to CTB/McGraw-Hill in March. This same data is used to create the WVS.326 forms. This pre-slug will also determine the number of Braille and large print test booklets that must be ordered for each county. A second pull will be made the second day of the testing window for determination of full academic year and enrollment for participation rate. Other dates exist for APTA, ACT PLAN and EXPLORE and NAEP.
Another error that often occurs is than many students have their accommodations changed during a school year. This creates the likelihood that students are provided an accommodation that they may not be familiar with instructionally. Students should receive only accommodations that they have used instructionally for assessment purposes. This practice could lead to errors in reliable and valid assessment results for those students.
Preparing for Administration
Who determines our county’s testing schedule?
The superintendent and the county test coordinator determine the testing schedule for the county.
May we test one 4th grade class in Math on Tuesday and test another 4th grade class on Wednesday?
It is suggested that within a county, all classes within a grade level test in the same content area on the same day.
Can the test be administered in the afternoon?
The recommended time for testing is in the morning; however, you may test in the afternoon. For example, if a student misses the morning but comes to school in the afternoon and you feel that he/she may be absent the next day, go ahead and test that student in the afternoon. (Please note that your school participation rate in Reading/Language Arts and Math assessments must be at 95% to obtain AYP for your school.)
Is there a certain order in which WESTEST 2 needs to be administered?
WVDE recommends that the tests be administered in the order that they are found in the WESTEST 2 test booklet (Mathematics, Reading/Language Arts, Social Studies, and Science). The schedule is determined by the each county; any deviation from the county schedule must have prior approval from the county test coordinator. It is highly recommended that within a county, all schools administer the same grade and same content test on the same day.
What are the options for home instructed students?
The parent(s)/guardian(s) of a home instructed students(s) must notify the county test coordinator of their intent to participate at least two months prior to the WESTEST 2 Online Writing testing window or by a date determined by the county test coordinator. Home instructed students who are taking WESTEST 2 must test in the county in which they reside at a location indicated by the county test coordinator. Test booklets and answer sheets of home instructed students must be kept separate from those of the public school students. All educators and non-public school students participating in the assessment of the West Virginia Measures of Academic Progress shall be required to follow all testing guidelines and procedures set forth (see West Virginia Board of Education Policy 2340, §4.10).
How will students who are receiving services in an alternative facility (HCA Riverpark, Cammack Children's Center, Presley Ridge, etc.) be tested if the teachers at these facilities are not county employees? Can these students be tested in the afternoon?
Students must be tested by a trained examiner (See West Virginia Board of Education Policy 2340, §3.16), who has signed an Examiner’s/Scribe’s Secure Materials and Test Procedures Agreement. The county test coordinator is responsible for ensuring trained examiners from his/her respective county are available to test students in alternative facilities.
If the student is too medically fragile to be tested, you may send an appeal to Dr. Gus Penix, Executive Director of Office of Education Performance Audits. Appeal forms are on the OEPA web site http://oepa.state.wv.us/. Students may be tested in the afternoon; however, the recommended time is in the morning.
May larger schools secure WESTEST 2 materials in more than one secured central location?
The principal/building level coordinator will determine the location(s) to secure the WESTEST 2 materials. The WESTEST 2 Test Coordinator's Manual states that materials must be locked in a secured central location(s) and the signed security agreements also state that materials must be locked in a secured central location(s).
Do secure materials have to be distributed to all schools within a county 5 days (in 2012, May 10) before the first day of the testing window (in 2011, May 16-27)?
No, but secure materials cannot be distributed to schools no earlier than 5 work days before the first day of the testing window.
What if the wrong label is placed on the Grade 3 student test booklet or the Grade 4-11 answer sheet?
If the barcode label is missing, damaged or destroyed, the principal/building level coordinator should complete the bio-grid information.
Are the test booklet numbers and student names on the Security Checklist when it arrives from CTB/McGraw-Hill?
The Security Checklist arrives with the test booklet numbers pre-populated on the form. Examiner names are populated by the principal/building level coordinator. Student names can be populated by the principal/building level coordinator or the examiner.
Who must complete the Security Checklist used by the examiner to check in/out student testing materials within the testing room?
The final responsibility for completing the Security Checklist used to check in/out testing materials to students rests with the examiner. The examiner should use student name labels found on the test booklets (Grade 3) or answer sheets (Grades 4-11) or bio-grid information to write student names beside assigned test booklet security barcode numbers. The building level coordinator has the option to complete this procedure prior to the pickup of secure materials by the examiner.
What if a student moves from a Home-Instructed or Nonpublic system into a Public School system between taking WESTEST 2 Online Writing and the May session of WESTEST 2?
The county test coordinator must notify the Office of Assessment and Accountability so that adjustments may be made to ensure the student’s performance on Online Writing can be combined with the student’s performance on the multiple-choice section of WESTEST 2 RLA. The county test coordinator must complete the “Student Assessment ID Number Change Form for WESTEST 2” available at http://wvde.state.wv.us/oaa/westest_index.html. This form must be submitted no later than the second day of the WESTEST 2 testing window in May.
What is the nature of test items?
All test items align to the West Virginia 21st Century CSOs. The items range in difficulty and in thinking levels. There are multiple choice and gridded response items.
What is a gridded response?
A gridded response item requires the student to solve a problem without having answer choices. Once the answer is calculated the student must write the answer in the gridded boxes and then bubble in the corresponding answer in the circles below the box(es). Examples of how to record answers can be found on the sites below:
What is a Document Based Question (DBQ)?
One Document Based Question (DBQ) will be used at each grade level in the WESTEST 2 Social Studies tests. Each DBQ will consist of 3 to 8 documents with 4 to 9 accompanying multiple-choice questions. The final item of the set will require students to synthesize information from all the documents and reach a valid conclusion based on the information contained in the documents.
How will the WESTEST 2 address the changes in the science curriculum in grades 9-11?
WESTEST 2 Science Roll-Out
Grades 10 and 11
|WESTEST 2 Testing Window
||Grade 10 Sceince
||Grade 11 Chemistry
||Grade 11 Non-Chemistry
WESTEST 2 Science (Scored)
WESTEST 2 Science (Scored)
WESTEST 2 Not Administered
How are the WESTEST 2 Mathematics Formula Sheet and the Science Reference Sheet to be used?
Students in grades 9-11 will receive the formula sheet for Mathematics on the day of the mathematics test. The formula sheet is available prior to the test on the WESTEST 2 Web site. These are the same formula sheets that will be distributed during testing. The formula sheet used during testing should be collected and shredded at the end of testing for security purposes.
Students will receive a Science Formula Sheets in grades 7-9 and the Periodic Table in grades 5-10 on the day of the test. Those students who take WESTEST 2 Grade 11 Science will receive a formula sheet and periodic table designated for Grade 11. The formula sheet used during testing should be collected and shredded at the end of testing for security purposes. An identical formula sheet and periodic table may be downloaded from the departments Web site and used during the school year. However, only the sheets distributed on test day can be used during testing and must be collected and shredded at the end of testing for security purposes.
Links to the mathematics formula sheet and science reference sheets are found below.
Mathematics Formula Sheets Grades 9 - 11
Science Reference Sheets Grades 5 - 10
Science Reference Sheets Grade 11
Are Mathematics formula sheets provided for grades 3-8?
No, test questions were written to align to the mastery level of the CSOs, therefore formulas are not provided.
What if a student creates his/her own "arithmetic table" on scratch paper?
A student may not bring an “arithmetic or multiplication table” into the secured testing room. However, a student may create his/her "arithmetic or multiplication table" after testing begins on blank scratch paper. The student may use this during the test, but it must be collected and destroyed with all other scratch paper at the end of the testing session.
May calculators be used on the Science/Mathematics assessments?
Yes, calculators may be used on the Science and Mathematics assessments at all grade levels and for all questions. Any kind of graphing calculator may be used except one with a typewriter-style keypad (known as QWERTY) or one that includes a computer algebra system (CAS). Handheld minicomputers, personal digital assistants, and laptop computers may not be used. All types of memory, including standard memory, ROM, and flash ROM, must be cleared to a factory default both before and after testing. In addition, any programs or applications must be removed prior to testing. Additional information on calculator use may be found in the Test Coordinator’s and Examiner’s Manuals.
Is the use of a calculator required?
May scratch paper be used for all content tests?
Yes, but it must be collected at the end of each exam and treated as secure material. The principal/building level coordinator should shred scrap paper each day.
May students use highlighters on WESTEST 2?
Only a No.2 pencil will be used to record answers. Students may write in their test booklets to work problems, complete graphic organizers or to highlight information, but it is recommended that students do so with a pencil. In grade 3, marks must not interfere with answer choices or the gray lines on the side of the page.
Since the test is untimed, how can breaks be scheduled consistently?
To minimize disruptions and possible irregularities, WVDE strongly recommends that scheduled breaks only take place between the sessions of the content area tests, as indicated on the suggested test schedules located in the WESTEST 2 Examiner’s Manual. Accommodations for students who require additional breaks can be made in IEP and Section 504 documents. Individual emergency/bathroom breaks are allowed; principals/building level coordinators should make arrangements to provide these should they be needed. Students are to be monitored during individual breaks.
What is a Breach form and when is the form used?
A breach form is used when a student’s operational test has been invalidated. Only the principal/building level coordinator can invalidate a test under the direction of the county test coordinator. If a situation occurs that could warrant invalidation, the county test coordinator should contact the Office of Assessment and Accountability; if a decision is made to invalidate, a Breach form sent from the WVDE, Office of Assessment and Accountability.
If the test booklets and answer sheets of absent students are collected and stored, how do we re-issue test booklets and answer sheets to students who sign in late?
If a late student would interrupt testing, you should schedule the student for make-up testing. The principal/building level coordinator may create a Late Arrival Assessment Site and assign an examiner to administer WESTEST 2 to students arriving late.
May a student who comes in late on the day of testing enter the classroom at the break, begin the testing, and then complete the part he/she missed during a make-up session?
No. A student should not enter the classroom once testing has begun. If trained examiners are available to test the late student, testing can begin when the child arrives.
If assistance in the collection of absent students’ test booklets and answer sheets is necessary, who may be allowed to assist?
Any employee of the state, county or RESA, or an educator of a private or parochial school with a valid West Virginia teaching license who has been trained and has signed an Examiner’s/Scribe’s Secure Materials and Test Procedures Agreement may administer an assessment included in the WV-MAP. Aides who are assigned to work with special needs students and who meet the criteria for examiner as defined in West Virginia Board of Education Policy 2340, §3.16, may assist in the assessment process of the students to whom they are assigned if they are approved by WVDE, have been trained, signed the appropriate security agreement, and meet all other Policy 2340 requirements. Student teachers may not participate in any component of the administration of WESTEST 2.
Does the principal/building level coordinator initial daily the Security Checklist used to check in/out student testing materials to examiners?
Yes, the principal/building level coordinator is responsible for every test booklet and answer sheet on a daily basis; therefore, they are to initial the security checklist for each test booklet and answer sheet daily when the test booklets/answer sheets are returned by the examiner.
If a student moves into my school during the testing window, am I obligated to test him?
Yes. If the student came from an in-county school or another West Virginia county school, find out what tests he/she has taken and administer the remaining tests. If the student is from another state, private school, or was home-instructed you should try to administer all of WESTEST 2 to him/her, especially RLA and Math. You will need to complete the bio-grid for this student. Remember, students may only take the test given to the other students on the same day. Although this student's scores will not count toward your school for AYP since he/she came after the fifth instructional day, the student will count in the participation rate for AYP if he/she enrolled on/before the second day of the testing window. If the student has been in other in-county schools continuously since the fifth instructional day, his/her scores will count for that county's AYP.
If a student moves from one school to another school within the county during the testing week, does the student's test booklet/answer sheet go with him/her?
No. The student will have two test booklets/answer sheets. One test booklet/answer sheet would remain at the first school. The second school would complete the bio-grid on a new test booklet/answer sheet, and the student would complete the remainder of the tests in the new test booklet/answer sheet. Both test booklets (Grade 3)/ answer sheets (Grades 4-11) would be sent to CTB/McGraw-Hill for scoring. Because the ID number is the same, WVDE will be able to combine the results. Refer to the county test coordinator concerning the use of invalidation bubbles. [Note: The student would have two reports. Each report would reflect the scores for the part of the exam completed at the respective school. There would also be invalidated scores reflecting the part of the exam that was not taken.]
If the classroom doors are locked while teachers accompany students to the restrooms, who should supervise those students in the hallways, waiting for the doors to be unlocked?
Most schools, large and small, schedule breaks between the sessions in a content area. Additional school personnel should be positioned to monitor students in hallways and/or break areas. However, if a student needs to be excused to go to the restroom during testing, he/she must be allowed to do so. A student may be accompanied by an aide if one is available. If an aide is unavailable, a student may go to the restroom alone.
If a test booklet (Grade 3) or answer sheet (Grades 4-11) is contaminated during the test, do we transfer the responses already recorded to a new one and who does the transcribing?
If a test booklet (Grade 3) or answer sheet (Grades 4-11) becomes damaged, immediately notify the principal/building level coordinator. Next, a trained examiner should transfer student responses to a new test booklet/answer sheet and then, complete a Scribe Verification Form. This form and guidelines for transcribing are found in the WESTEST 2 Test Coordinator's and Examiner’s Manuals.
What is to be done with a WESTEST 2 test booklet/answer sheet that becomes contaminated during testing?
DO NOT DESTROY the test booklet. Notify your principal/building level coordinator who will assign another test booklet on the Security Checklist to the student and then transfer the student's information to the new test booklet. Complete a Scribe Verification Form at the conclusion of the transcription. The contaminated test booklet must be sent to the county test coordinator. He/She may destroy the contaminated test booklet after notifying the Office of Assessment and Accountability by telephone, CTB/McGraw-Hill by letter, and the West Virginia Department of Education, Office of Assessment and Accountability by letter. Any destroyed test booklet/answer sheet must be identified on the Security Checklist. Additional information on contaminated test booklets/answer sheets can be found in the WESTEST 2 Test Coordinator's Manual.
What constitutes a testing irregularity?
A testing irregularity is any testing disruption that may have influenced the testing performance of two or more students.
If a student needs extra time, may the student be moved to another location to finish?
Yes, as long as the student does not have the opportunity to ask other students or teachers how to respond to the test questions or to look up answers, and the student is monitored by a trained examiner who maintains the security of WESTEST 2, he/she may move to another location and finish the test. Students who typically take longer to complete tests may be grouped together.
If the time a student needs to complete a test extends during and beyond the lunch period, does the student remain in the room until the test is finished or resume testing after lunch?
One way to handle this is to move the student to another work area monitored by a trained examiner and allow the students who have finished testing to go to lunch. All students who need more time should have a monitored (by a trained examiner) lunch break together and resume testing after lunch. Security procedures could be violated if students were given an opportunity to converse with other students who had already completed the test.
If time runs out in the morning to complete the testing, can the same test be resumed the next morning?
No. Each content test must be completed on the day the administration of that specific exam begins.
May alphabet charts be left up in the room during testing?
Yes. However, no information pertinent to the test being administered should be displayed in the room. This includes (but is not limited to) word walls, number lines, punctuation rules, maps, and multiplication tables.
If a school is testing Mathematics on Wednesday, can a teacher review Math before the Wednesday administration?
The teacher should not review the content area to be tested on the day it is tested. A teacher may review a content area prior to the day it is tested. However, a review of the contents of WESTEST 2 test booklets, creation of study guides, or preparation of instructional activities around specific WESTEST 2 test items would be a violation of test security (WVBE Policy 2340, §126-14-7 and Appendix A, Ethical Testing Practices).
Who trains the scribe? Is it a separate training from the examiner’s training?
The principal/building level coordinator is responsible for training scribes. The training does not need to be separate from the examiner’s training. A scribe must be a trained examiner. (See West Virginia Board of Education Policy 2340, §§3.16 and 3.40)
Can county test coordinators change a pre-scheduled pickup date?
No. The pickup date scheduled by CTB (Either June 6 or 7, 2011) is not an adjustable date. To ensure reports are prepared in a timely manner, all materials must be returned to CTB on the scheduled date. CTB will notify you of your county’s pickup date.
When students with disabilities are receiving accommodations at a separate testing site, do you pack the test booklets (Grade 3)/ answer sheets(Grades 4-11) separately under that teacher's GIS or do you place them back into the "homeroom" bundles?
You should bundle these student test booklets/answer sheets according to how you want the students’ results to be aggregated and returned to the school.
I want to have my school's test results sorted by teacher. May I bundle the test booklets (Grade 3)/ answer sheets (Grades 4-11) from some students, who need accommodations tested by a special education teacher, together with their classroom teacher's test booklets/answer sheets so the results will be reported with those of their classmates?
Yes. If some students from Teacher A and Teacher B are administered WESTEST 2 by Special Education Teacher C, the students would record Teacher C's name on the front cover of the test booklet. However, the test booklets/answer sheets could be bundled and counted as a part of Teacher A's or Teacher B's classes. The data would appear by teacher in TestMate Clarity, and would not alter the generation of regular WESTEST 2 reports.
Should there be a Student/Group List (SGL) completed for each grade in a school?
No, usually only one SGL should be completed per building for public school students; larger schools may require two SGLs. A separate SGL is needed for home-instructed students who are tested at the school with the public school students.
Should there be a Student/Group List (SGL) completed for each grade in a nonpublic school?
No, usually only one SGL should be completed per building, even for public school students; larger nonpublic schools may require two SGLs.
When bundling test booklets, must the bands be used that are provided by CTB?
Yes, you must use the bands provided. These bands were specifically selected for their size, strength and durability. Rubber bands, paper clips or other types of fasteners should not be used; fasteners other than the supplied bands may cause damage and make the test booklets/answer sheets difficult to scan.
If grouping answer sheets by grade, what “last name, space, first initial” goes on the GIS?
List the grade level. For example, in the Teacher Name Field, list “Grade Four.”
Can more than one school’s test booklets be placed in the same box?
You may put more than one school’s test booklets in one box; however, it is better to keep all of one school’s test booklets together.
Can more than one school’s answer sheets be placed in a “For Answer Sheets” envelope?
Envelopes labeled “For Answer Sheets” should only contain answer sheets and GIS forms that match the GIS for that particular group of students.
Our middle school has three teams at each grade level and would like results by team. Can answer sheets be grouped by team?
Yes. For reports by team, list the name of the team in the Teacher Name Field. Remember, the results by team would be compiled in TestMate Clarity. WESTEST 2 reports remain consistent.
If we want data by grade level, do we put in the principal’s name or third grade or at random choose a teacher name as it applies to the SGL?
Data reported by grade level would be filled out as “Grade Three” in the Teacher Name Field. If you want reports by class in TestMate Clarity, the teacher for that class would be listed in the Teacher Name Field.
Do the scores count in AYP calculations?
Scores in Mathematics and Reading/Language Arts will be used in AYP determination.
How will WESTEST 2 be used for accountability for schools/counties/state?
WESTEST 2 Reading Language Arts and Mathematics test scores will be used to determine the school, county, and state mastery of the West Virginia 21st Century Content Standards and Objectives for Annual Yearly Progress (AYP). WESTEST 2 Reading Language Arts and Mathematics participation rates will be used to determine the school, county and state participation rate status for AYP. Please refer all accountability questions/issues/concerns to the Office of Education Performance Audits. This office writes and revises the policy that outlines how assessments, participation rates, attendance rate, and graduation rate will impact school/county/state AYP determinations and status. Contact Dr. Gus Penix, Executive Director of Office of Education Performance Audits, email@example.com.
How will WESTEST 2 be reported on the West Virginia Report Card?
Assessment results will be reported on the school, county, and state report cards by class, subgroup, and proficiency levels. Results for groups with less than 10 students will not be reported in the public reports. For additional information, contact the Office of Technology and Information Systems or contact Marshall Patton, Executive Director of Office of Technology and Information, firstname.lastname@example.org.
When will the 2012 WESTEST 2 reports be available to schools?
The Reports Delivery Schedule is posted on the WESTEST 2 web site. Phase I (GRF reports) will be accessible by county test coordinators on approximately July 14; Phase II (PDF reports) will be available electronically to the county test coordinators on approximately July 20; Phase III (Printed Reports) will be delivered to county offices on approximately August 3; and TestMate Clarity files will be delivered to county offices on approximately August 24.
When will WESTEST 2 reports be available in electronic form?
Please see the Reports Delivery Schedule on the WESTEST 2 web site. Additionally, Marshall Patton and the Office of Technology Information will maintain a data on demand system.
Will test item analysis be provided for all content areas?
Yes, a test item analysis report will be provided by grade and content area for each school, county, and state.
Will we also get West Virginia reports, e.g. Confidential Item Analysis Summary, for each GIS?
No, the paper reports, which include the Confidential Item Analysis Summary, will be aggregated by school, county and state. WVDE provides teacher level reports in TestMate Clarity. Please note: The TestMate Clarity reports organize students by the teacher listed on the GIS.
After each year of testing, what documentation can be destroyed?
Documentation should be kept for at least three (3) years by the county test coordinator.
When will WESTEST 2 take place in 2012?
In 2012, the WESTEST 2 testing window is defined as ten consecutive school days from May 7 – 25. Counties in West Virginia submitted and received approval for their testing window in the Fall of 2011. The county testing window cannot be changed without notification and approval from the Office of Assessment and Accountability.
What security procedures will apply to WESTEST 2?
All security procedures outlined in WV Board of Education, Policy 2340, must be followed.
If a potential examiner has been trained, but refuses to sign the Test Procedures Agreement for Examiner, may that person administer the test?
May teachers and administrators write in the administration manuals during training?
Yes, each year new manuals will be provided.
How was WESTEST 2 developed?
West Virginia Department of Education in association with CTB/McGraw-Hill and West Virginia teachers developed a criterion-referenced assessment to evaluate West Virginia students on the West Virginia 21st Century Content Standards and Objectives.
Were West Virginia teachers involved in the development?
Yes, the West Virginia Department of Education is committed to ensuring state classroom teachers are involved in every possible level of development for WESTEST 2. Over the course of development, approximately 700 general education content teachers, along with county administrators, special education teachers, business leaders and parents were involved in all areas of test design/development and standard setting.