Smarter Balanced Assessments

The Smarter Balanced Assessment System evaluates student performance in English/Language Arts and Mathematics and is required for all students in grades 3-8.  The Smarter Balanced assessments are designed to measure each student's progress toward meeting the learning expectations for what students should learn and do at each grade level. The achievement levels 1-4 will indicate on-track progress toward college- and career-readiness.

The assessments are taken on the computer which allows for new question types and performance tasks that ask students to demonstrate an array of research, writing, and problem-solving skills.


Based on student responses, the Computer Adaptive Test adjusts the difficulty of future questions throughout the assessment based upon the student's previous answers. For example, a student who answers a question correctly will then receive a more challenging item, while the level of challenge eases down for students who are struggling. By adapting to the student responses as the assessment is taking place, Smarter Balanced Assessments provide an individually tailored set of questions for each student. This adaptability will provide data that will quickly identify which skills the student has mastered and generate a detailed picture of each student's growth over time.


The Smarter Balanced Assessments measure student performance in authentic ways, beyond the traditional multiple choice questions. Performance tasks, for example, ask students to research and analyze information, weigh evidence, and solve problems relevant to the real world, allowing students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in an authentic way. The tasks measure skills valued by higher education and the workplace—critical thinking, problem solving, and communication—that are not adequately assessed by most statewide assessments today. In addition to performance tasks, the test offers other new item response types including short answers, multiple responses to a single question, and manipulation of items on the screen using digital tools.

Assessment Calendars

Connecticut SAT School Day

Grade 11 at PHS (1/2 day only): April 24, 2018 

Science : Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) Assessment Field Test Testing Window

Grade 5 at All Elementary Schools: April 30, 2018 - May 25, 2018Grade 8 at MMS and RMS: April 30, 2018 - May 25, 2018

Grade 11 at PHS: March 26- May 25, 2018

Smarter Balanced Assessments Testing Window

These testing windows are very flexible. Students will not be testing every day of the window assigned to their grade level. Make-up testing for absent students will be available TBD.

Grades 3 through Grades 5 at All Elementary Schools: March 26 - May 25, 2018 Grade 6 and Grade 7 at RMS:  March 26 - May 25, 2018Grade 6 and Grade 7 at MMS:  March 26 - May 25, 2018

Grade 8 at RMS:  March 26 - May 25, 2018 Grade 8 at MMS: March 26 - May 25, 2018