What Standardized Testing Does MCA Offer?
Millennium Charter Academy utilizes two types of assessments: achievement and aptitude. Each looks at a different aspect of cognitive development. All achievement tests are created from content specific material, such as reading and math, and they measure knowledge and skills explicitly taught in schools. Aptitude tests, on the other hand, evaluate reasoning skills that are developed indirectly through various life experiences.
Under achievement tests, MCA administers the NWEA MAP®, the North Carolina End of Grade Test, commonly known as the EOG, and certain North Carolina End of Course Tests (EOC). The MAP® is an online, adaptive test aligned to state and national standards, while the EOG is derived from the NC Standard Course of Study. The MAP®, administered in fall and spring, assesses reading, language, mathematics, and science, as well as individual student growth. The EOG only assesses reading and math. EOCs are given for middle school classes that receive high school credit, such as Algebra I and Geometry.
In the fall and spring, MCA gives the MAP® to all students in third grade and up. This provides feedback that can beneficially impact the current school year. The State mandates that the EOG be given within the last three weeks of school. This information, according to the State’s guidelines, is used to help determine promotion/ retention and to improve the instruction during the upcoming school year.
Regarding aptitude testing, Millennium Charter Academy administers the Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT), as needed. As stated above, this measures reasoning abilities and is not an indicator of innate intelligence.
What Is the Value of Testing?
Achievement and ability tests can help paint a picture of the academic progress of individual students and the school itself. All tests, though important in and of themselves, gain more meaning when compared with subsequent testing. Looking at one frame in a comic strip makes some sense, but seeing the strip in its entirety provides a context and a better understanding. Imagine your best – or worst- snapshot. Remember the one that caught you with some wild contorted face. Or maybe that glamour shot that made you think, “Now that is the way I want to be remembered!” Neither one of these is inaccurate, but with additional photos, a truer picture could be developed. All test scores are best understood in the broader context of experience.
Read to Achieve Testing Results for 2013-2014 School Year