From Z to A: Using Validity Evidence to Set Performance Standards: Kimberly O’Malley, Leslie Keng, and Julie Miles, Pearson
Th e approach for setting performance standards for statewide and educational assessment programs is changing. Whereas setting performance standards has previously been conducted separately for each grade and content area with some eff orts to align across grades within a content area, states and assessment programs are now setting performance standards with more emphasis on the broader assessment system. Empirical and policy evidence spanning across grades within a content area, across content areas, and across assessments is shaping the performance standards for any one grade and subject more than ever before. Th e purpose of this chapter is to describe ways in which states and assessment programs are adapting common standard setting approaches to emphasize more strongly empirical and policy evidence throughout the process. Th e processes used for setting performance standards for the American Diploma Project Algebra II End-of-Course Exam and for the Texas statewide assessment system will be highlighted as examples of the more comprehensive approach.