• Common Questions Regarding MAP Growth Assessment


    What is MAP Growth?  What does it measure?

    Unlike paper and pencil tests, where all students are asked the same questions and spend a fixed amount of time taking the test, MAP Growth is a computer adaptive test -- which means every student gets a unique set of test questions based on responses to previous questions.  As the student answers correctly, questions get harder.  If the student answers incorrectly, the questions get easier.  Most students will answer 1/2 the questions correctly as is common on adaptive tests.  The purpose of MAP Growth is to determine what the student knows and is ready to learn next.  MAP Growth track students' individual growth over time--wherever they begin, regardless of the grade level.  Ex: If a third grader is actually reading on a fifth-grade level, MAP Growth will identify that. Or If a fifth grader is doing math on a third-grade level, MAP Growth will identify that also. Both are important for a teacher so they can plan instruction efficiently.

     What is an RIT score?

    When students finish their MAP Growth test, they receive a number called an RIT score for each area they are tested in (reading, language usage, math, or science). The score represents a student's achievement level at any given moment and helps measure their academic growth over time.  The RIT scale is a stable scale, like feet and inches, that accurately measures student performance, regardless of age, grades, or grade level.  You can find out more about the RIT scale at the website (http://www.nwea.org/normative-data-rit-scores/).

    How often will my child take the MAP Growth test?

    Most schools give MAP Growth tests to students at the beginning, middle, and end of the school year.  Some schools include a summer testing session.

    How long is the MAP Growth test?

    Normally, most students take less than (1) hour to complete a MAP Growth test.  This test is not timed.  Students may take as much time as needed to complete the test.

    Is MAP Growth a standardized test? How is it different from 'high-stress' tests?

    Unlike standardized tests, MAP Growth is administered periodically during the school year, and it adjusts to each student's performance, rather than asking all students the same questions.  When we talk about the 'high-stakes' test, we are talking about a test designed to measure what students already know, based on what is expected at their grade level - and high stakes tests are often used to measure grade-level proficiency. MAP Growth is designed to measure student achievement in the moment and growth over time, regardless of grade level, so it is quite different.  Another difference is the timeliness of the results.  MAP Growth gives immediate feedback to teachers, administrators, students, and parents.  Teachers receive results that show what students know and what they are ready to learn. MAP Growth aligns the same standards in a given state as the state test, so both measure similar content.

    What information will I receive from my child's school?

    Schools will provide a child Student Progress Report.  This report contains information and scores from a student's most recent and past MAP Growth assessments.  Discuss results with your child's teacher for a full understanding of the information and how they can use their child's reading and math scores to identify resources to support home learning.

    How do schools and teachers use MAP Growth scores? 

    NWEA  provides many different reports to help schools and teachers use MAP Growth information. Teachers can view the progress of individual students and their class.  MAP Growth also provides data around the typical growth for students who are in the same grade, subject and have the same starting achievement level.  This data is often used to help students set goals and understand what they need to learn to achieve their goals.  Principals and administrators can use scores to see the performance and progress of a grade level, school or district.

    Can MAP Growth tell me if my child is on grade level?

    NWEA has put together charts showing the median RIT scores for students at various grade levels.  NWEA researchers examined the scores of millions of students to find the average scores for students in various grades.  NOTE:  MAP Growth scores are just one data point teachers use to determine how a student is performing.  Discuss any questions about performance with your child's teacher. 

    What subjects are available with MAP Growth?

    There are tests for grades 2 - 12 in reading, language usage, mathematics, and science.  There is also a K-2 assessment for early learners in reading and mathematics.  With these child-friendly tests for young learners, students wear headphones since many questions include audio to assist those who are still learning to read.

    What type of questions are on the MAP Growth tests?  Are there sample tests?

    MAP Growth tests include multiple-choice, drag and drop and other types of questions.  You can access a short sample test at  (http://warmup.nwea.org/)

     What does NWEA do with my Childs' information?  Is it secure?

    NWEA uses technological and operational measures to ensure security and privacy.  NWEA does not use your child's personally identifiable information (PII)  for any purpose but to provide service to your child's school.  Combined information is used for research and development to improve our product and accelerate learning for all students.  Data sharing is completely at the control of the educational institution that purchases this product.