Kansas Mathematics Assessment Scores
All children who take a Kansas Mathematics Assessment receive a score and a performance category. For students who take the Alternate Assessment, scores range between 0.0 and 5.0. For students who take the Modified or General Assessment, scores range from 0 to 100.
All students are classified into one of five performance categories: Academic Warning, Approaches Standard, Meets Standard, Exceeds Standard, or Exemplary. A brief description of each performance level can be found at the bottom of the score report, as indicated by the blue arrow below.
More detailed information regarding performance categories can be found here.
Test scores are really best described as a “range of possible scores.” Test scores are always going to be a little high or a little low based on how the test taker felt that day, the specific items he or she received, or if he or she made a lucky guess or two. Test makers take this variation of test scores into account when reporting scores.
Your child’s General or KAMM score report will include a graphic that looks something like this:
The diamond, indicated by the blue arrow, shows the score and performance category your child actually earned. The gray box around the diamond, (indicated by the red arrows) shows the likely range of scores your child could expect if he or she took the test multiple times. As this box shows, your child may have scored higher or lower on another similar test. While such effects average out across an entire class (or school) of children, this plus or minus effect is why no important decision should be based on just the results of one test.
Kansas Mathematics Assessment Indicators
Kansas Mathematics Assessments are built based on indicators. Indicators are building blocks for that year's curriculum and instruction. Each indicator measures a specific skill. Indicator scores describe what a child knows and can do. If your child took the General or KAMM assessment, then your child’s report will contain a section that lists the number of questions used to assess each indicator, how many questions your child answered correctly for each indicator, and a plus or minus bar for each indicator (as shown by the blue arrow).
While indicator scores can be useful, it is important not to over-interpret them. Indicator scores are based on only a few questions, and thus their plus or minus bars are fairly large. The indicators that have a plus or minus bar on the “Percent Answered Correctly” scale that does not overlap with other indicator plus or minus bars show where a student is strong or weak. In the example above the last plus or minus bar does not overlap the first seven plus or minus bars but does overlap the 8th through 14th bars.
Your child’s indicator scores are ordered from best to worst to make these comparisons easier. For example, this student is relatively weak at stating a rule for the nth term of an additive pattern but relatively strong at finding percentages of rational numbers. The student is about as good at solving problems involving area and perimeter as he or she is at stating a rule for the nth term of an additive pattern.
Using Indicator Scores to Identify Strengths and Weaknesses in Mathematics
Different children take different forms of the test; however, each form is constructed to assess the same material at the same level of difficulty. Total scores for each test are adjusted using a statistical process called equating to account for any minor differences in the difficulty of the questions on the form your child took when compared to other forms. Thus total scores and performance scores for different forms are comparable and can be used interchangeably, regardless of the form your child took. This statistical adjustment cannot be done for Indicator scores as they are based on too few questions.
Indicator scores cannot be statistically adjusted to account for differences between test forms. They should be used to focus on your child's strengths and weaknesses at the time your child took the test. They cannot be used to compare one child to another or to look at growth over time.