Alternate ACCESS Scores and Reports

teacher at table with girl with disability holding a tablet

How Alternate ACCESS for ELLs is scored

Test Administrators record the scores of all four domains (Listening, Reading, Speaking, Writing) into the test booklet during test administration and send to DRC, where the scores are captured for reporting.

States have a chance to review their data before scores are printed, allowing them to identify errors in the data and make corrections. DRC provides the data and ships printed score reports directly to states.

Types of Scores

Raw Scores

These are the actual number of items or tasks the student responded to correctly. This number is the starting point, but not useful to understand student performance, because it does not take item difficulty into account. On Alternate ACCESS, raw scores are provided for the Listening and Reading domains only.

Scale Scores

These take item difficulty into account, so they can be used to examine groups of students, or student performances over time.

Proficiency Level Scores

These provide an interpretation of scale scores. On WIDA tests, they are described in terms of WIDA’s six English language proficiency levels.

Proficiency levels on Alternate ACCESS range from A1-P3. These proficiency levels are interpretations of scale scores, and are unique from other ACCESS assessments. A student who scores a P1 on the Alternate ACCESS is not necessarily at the entering level on the ACCESS for ELLs Online and Paper assessments. At the same time, if the majority of your students are scoring in the P1 and P2 levels (or P3 levels in Writing), be sure to check your state’s participation criteria as the students might be better served on the ACCESS for ELLs Online or Paper test.

alternate access proficiency levels infographic

Using the Scores

Alternate ACCESS scores have many potential uses, from determining the placement of individual students to guiding instruction. Test scores should be just one element in the decision-making process to:

  • Monitor student progress annually (using scores from two or more years) – scores from the first year taking Alternate ACCESS can establish a baseline to track future growth.
  • Guide IEP teams in determining English language acquisition supports
  • Inform classroom instruction and assessment
  • Aid in programmatic decision-making 

Types of Score Reports

All Alternate ACCESS score reports provide score information for eight categories: four domains and four composites. Composite scores are created from two or more domain scores.

Domains: Listening, Reading, Speaking, Writing

Composites: Oral Language, Literacy, Comprehension, Overall

Please note that while these are the same score categories as the other ACCESS tests, Alternate ACCESS uses its own scale ranges. The labeling specific to Alternate ACCESS is intended to avoid confusion with other WIDA assessments.  

Individual Student Report (ISR)

The ISR shows all the scores for an individual student. It provides brief descriptions of each proficiency level with a lot of visual support. Translated copies can be sent home with students and/or discussed at conferences with parents/guardians.

Tips

  • Use when your focus is on one student at a time
  • Use the ISR to assist when talking to the student, their parents or guardians, and their other educators
  • Use Alternate ACCESS Speaking and Writing Interpretive Rubrics when looking at those scores

Sample Reports

Student Roster Report (SRR)

The SRR contains information about a group of students within a single school and grade. It does not have visual supports or descriptors of each level but provides a concise and holistic way to view the results for a group of students.

Tips for Use

Look for patterns in student performance:

  • Class placement
  • Forming work groups in a class
  • Identifying students who would benefit from different or additional support

Sample Report

Sample Alternate Student Roster Report

Frequency Reports

WIDA provides three frequency reports: school, district and state. They show the number and percentage of tested students (per grade) who scored at each proficiency level. Frequency reports do not show the performance of individual students, so they are best for providing a global overview of a larger group’s performance. Because the number of students taking Alternate ACCESS tends to be relatively small, take care when interpreting frequency reports.

Tips

  • Use to gain a sense of the school, district, or state-wide effort towards educating ELLs
  • Use when planning, developing, or restructuring language services for ELLs
  • Be careful when generalizing about the meaning behind differing scores, especially with a small number of students

Sample Reports

three teachers discussing at a table

Alternate ACCESS for ELLs Interpretive Guide for Score Reports

The Interpretive Guide for Score Reports is a comprehensive document explaining the types of scores reported by Alternate ACCESS for ELLs for students in Grades 1-12.

Get the Guide

Resources for Families

Handout for parents explaining Alternate ACCESS for ELLs.

Connect to Classroom Instruction

Use Score Reports and WIDA ELD Standards to inform instruction.