If you are a teacher from a western state or one of the handful of eastern states that use Smarter Balanced (SBAC) assessments, finding a way to give students an SBAC practice test might be on your mind.
The common core-inspired standardized tests can create a flurry of activity ranging from adjusted school schedules to last-minute study sessions. To help prepare your students and minimize the anxiety of testing, you can set your students up with an online SBAC practice test.
These released SBAC assessments and items can help increase student comfort by simulating the online experience for students. You’ll also get to pre-check student mastery. Even if you are down to the wire, the immediate feedback can give you a last-minute chance for quick intervention.
States that use SBAC Assessments
- South Dakota
Check out our top tips to help prepare for SBAC assessments below — and then set up a few practice sessions with the SBAC practice tests to the right. With practice, your students will be ready to crush test day!
Access and Assign an SBAC Practice Test
On this page and in the free Edulastic Public Library you can browse through released SBAC assessments and items. Find an SBAC practice test here to give to your students so you can check for knowledge mastery and identify any learning gaps.
Using these released assessments as a pretest or diagnostic assessment will help you gauge student preparedness for the state test. Items are aligned to standards and automatically graded, which provides you instant insight into how students are doing. Based on students’ results, you can inform instruction and make sure students are on track to master the concepts they need to know. In addition to mastering learning concepts, we’ve outlined the top 5 online assessment skills for SBAC success.
Top 5 Online Assessment Skills for SBAC Success
1. Comfort with Technology-Enhanced Questions
Technology-enhanced questions are question types that assess a higher order of analytical skills. To answer, students need to know how to perform a variety of tech-specific maneuvers. High-stakes assessments like SBAC require students to do things like drag-and-drop, fill in boxes on a table, highlight, select and deselect, use dropdown menus, activate a video, and even use online calculators.
Here is an example of a drag-and-drop style question from one of the SBAC practice tests in our library. When students know how to move the correct answer into its proper place on the chart, they don’t waste a second figuring out the question type and have an advantage on test day. These and other tech-enhanced questions in Edulastic will give your students the opportunity to practice the skills they’ll need for the real test. By the time your students take the official SBAC assessment, they’ll be comfortable with the mechanics of the technology-enhanced questions and be able to focus on the content. If students need a little extra practice focusing on digital assessment question types, consider giving them a fun, low-stakes assessment.
2. Typing and Keyboard Skills
All of the SBAC test sections — ELA, Math, Social Studies, and Science — require students to type a response on the keyboard. The assessments use short answer and free-form essay questions, which means students should be familiar with the keyboard’s letters, numbers, delete, space bar, and other keys. For younger students, understanding the keyboard can be a challenge, so opportunities to practice typing in class will support their success during test time.
Here is a passage-based question from another SBAC practice test in the library. This free-form answer requires the student to use the keyboard to explain their answer to a math question. In this example, both math knowledge and keyboarding skills are essential to answering the question correctly.
You can use Edulastic’s essay question type to practice both short answer or essay responses in class or as outside assignments. Open-response question types also enable students to practice attention to detail when using the keyboard to submit responses.
3. Experience with Nonfiction and Informational Texts
Understanding and analyzing nonfiction or informational texts play a much more significant role on these assessments than they have traditionally. SBAC emphasizes students learning via informational texts, with these components making up between 45%-55% of the reading-based questions depending on the grade level.
Practicing answering questions about nonfiction or informational text passages is crucial to adequately prepare students for the SBAC assessment. Edulastic’s passage-based tech-enhanced questions give the students exposure to these types of questions and help them get used to reading and comprehending online. Students can also adjust to scrolling through text, locating portions of the text, and responding to passage-based questions online.
4. Practice on the Device
As tech-savvy as students are, a mechanical hiccup during testing could have pretty serious effects on a student and his/her scores. Whether you are using iPads or computers, students should be familiar with the device they will be tested on. More specifically, they need to know how to use the device for academic purposes — watching YouTube on an iPad isn’t the same as being tested on one. Students should also know some basic troubleshooting techniques, such as how to open the browser if it closes.
Give students practice assessments on the device they will use for the official exam. To go the extra mile, try taking a handful of Edulastic’s SBAC practice assessments on the device and in the same room they will use on official testing days.
5. Stamina to Complete the Test
Because there are several sections on the SBAC that can last an hour or more, students need to be ready to sit at the computer or device for an extended period of time. Working in front of a computer for increasing time periods can help them build up the stamina needed to complete the tests. A few practice sessions and strategic bathroom and snack solutions can be essential tools to getting through the session.
On this page, we’ve provided a few SBAC assessment tests from our library that you can use to build stamina. For the complete list of practice tests, enter the term SBAC in the search box in the Assessment Library and filter for your grade or subject.
Ready to Give an SBAC Practice Test?
We’ve made it easy for you! You can find SBAC released items in the Edulastic Public Library. Log into Edulastic, visit the Public Test Library, and start assigning SBAC practice assessments to your students!
Edulastic is free for teachers. If you don’t have an account, sign up today and get started!
- SBAC Website: https://smarterbalanced.org/
- CT: https://portal.ct.gov/SDE/Student-Assessment/Main-Assessment/Student-Assessment
- DE: https://www.doe.k12.de.us/domain/111
- NV: https://doe.nv.gov/Assessments/
- OR: https://www.oregon.gov/ode/educator-resources/assessment/Pages/default.aspx
- SD: https://doe.sd.gov/assessment/
- VT: https://education.vermont.gov/student-learning/assessments
- WA: https://www.k12.wa.us/student-success/testing/state-testing