District 117 has been using the MAP assessment for several years with kindergarten, first and second grade students. This year is our second first year that all students in grades K-8 are taking MAP two or three times a year in reading and mathematics.
MAP tests are unique as they are adaptive tests that a child takes on the computer. This means that the test becomes more difficult or easier based upon the number of questions answered correctly or incorrectly. When a child incorrectly answers a question, the test becomes easier. Therefore, children take a test specifically created for his or her learning level.
MAP results are reported in RIT scores. This is a different type of score than a typical test that provides a percentage correct. It is also different from many tests that provide results based on a child’s score compared to others in his or her grade. Instead, the RIT score is an equal-interval scale, like feet and inches, that is independent of grade level. As a result, we can easily measure growth in learning. This type of score increases the value of the tests as a tool to improve student learning because it enables teachers to recognize where to focus attention for each child’s learning.
MAP testing is a powerful tool for monitoring student growth over time. This test is aligned to the Common Core State Standards which are more rigorous than the former Illinois State Standards. MAP testing is a tool for monitoring student growth over time. These results help determine specific programing for our students.