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PARCC Scores are in. What’s next?

[fa icon="calendar"] January, 2016 / by Press Room

Press Room

Bridging the Instructional Gap

Five million students across 11 states and the District of Columbia took the PARCC® tests in 2014–2015. These assessments are intended to measure the extent to which students are meeting the expectations of new, more rigorous college- and career-ready standards. Many participating states’ districts, schools, students, and parents were disappointed by lower-than-expected results from the exams. The message to these states was clear: Schools need to address the gap between instructional strategies and the high expectations of the standards measured by the PARCC tests.

Many efforts will contribute to closing that gap. To help, we offer districts and educators the Measured Progress Formative Content Bank. Our Assessment Services experts can work with you to develop assessment solutions that align to both your district’s instructional pacing and to the high expectations of the PARCC assessments. Based on Measured Progress’s assessment content, your benchmark assessments will yield better information about students’ critical thinking, persuasive writing, and problem-solving skills. As a result, you can focus your time on areas where instructional support is needed leading up to the end-of-year summative assessments.


Here are some examples of how our content can be used as an instructional resource and benefit student learning.

Reading and Writing:

  • Use paired passages to provide students with practice comparing and analyzing literary and informational texts.
  • Assess reading comprehension using evidence-based selected response (EBSR) items. Students select specific evidence from the text to support their answer choices.
  • Improve writing skills with prose constructed response (PCR) items that integrate reading and writing standards. These text-dependent items require students to compose well developed writing that includes evidence from the reading selections.


  • Use extended-response (ER) items to collect evidence of students’ ability to reason mathematically. Student responses serve as classroom examples of meeting expectations.
  • Scaffold items in increasing difficulty to help students incrementally apply mathematical concepts and skills for solving multi-step word problems.
  • With online testing, provide students opportunities to interact with a variety of new technology-enhanced item (TEI) types to gather evidence in new ways.

PARCC® is a registered mark of Parcc, Inc.

Topics: Classroom Assessment, Common Core, Formative Assessment, College and Career Readiness

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Written by Press Room

Our Press Room chooses topics of interest from activities around the company, to provide a closer look at ways to improve learning and instruction, and to help demystify assessment issues.