In 2015, the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) online tests were administered for English language arts/literacy (ELA) and mathematics to California students in grades three through eight as part of California’s membership in the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium. These assessments are aligned to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in their respective content areas and are intended to measure student progress toward college and career readiness. Student test results are reported in the following overall achievement levels:

  • Level 4—Standard Exceeded
  • Level 3—Standard Met
  • Level 2—Standard Nearly Met
  • Level 1—Standard Not Met

Each content area of the online assessments consists of a computer adaptive test (CAT) (also called a non–performance task [non-PT]) as well as a performance task (PT). Preliminary summary results are available online, in the secure Online Reporting System (ORS).

Results from the scores from the CAT and PT are combined to determine the scale score. However, because the CAT portions of the test are based on the specific test questions selected as a result of the students’ responses, resulting scores are not the sum of the number correctly answered.

Results for tests within the CAASPP System are used for two primary purposes:

  1. Communicating students’ progress in achieving the state’s academic standards to students, parents/ guardians, and teachers. In developing the legislation for statewide testing, the Legislature recognized that LEAs will conduct their own ongoing diagnostic assessments and provide information on the results of these assessments to parents/guardians and teachers on a regular basis. The Legislature also recognized that local diagnostic assessment is the primary way in which to identify academic strengths and weaknesses (Education Code [EC] Section 60602).

  2. Informing decisions, along with local assessment data, that teachers and administrators make about helping students improve their achievement and about improving the educational program.

More background information about the CAASPP System can be found on the CDE CAASPP System Web page at



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