Member of the WIDA Consortium since 2011.


Maryland uses Kindergarten W-APT and WIDA Paper Screener (for Grades 1-12) to identify English learners (ELs). ACCESS for ELLs is given to all ELs during the annual testing window, which typically takes place from early January through late February.

Testing Dates

11/21/18-2/22/19 WIDA AMS test setup available for test sessions
12/18/18 Districts receive test materials
1/7/19-2/22/19 Test window
12/18/18-2/15/19 Additional test materials ordering window in AMS
3/1/19 Deadline for shipping completed test materials to DRC
5/14/19 Districts receive reports — Online
5/21/19 Districts receive reports — Printed


Requirements and Resources

See below for state-specific information and resources related to EL assessment, including your state’s ACCESS for ELLs Checklist, where you can find each step in the testing process from beginning to end.

ACCESS for ELLs Online Checklist ACCESS for ELLs Paper Checklist State-Specific Directions

State Testing Requirements

  • ACCESS for ELLs Online is administered for students in Grades 1-12. Students in Grades 1-3 continue to take the Writing domain in paper booklets.
  • Kindergarten and Alternate ACCESS for ELLs remain paper-based assessments.
  • ELs with special needs may take the paper-based ACCESS for ELLs if indicated in their IEP or 504 Plan.
  • ELs in Grades 4-5 keyboard their Writing responses. For newly arrived ELs and/or ELs who have considerable difficulty in keyboarding, LEAs may order handwriting response booklets in the Additional Materials ordering window. (Handwriting response booklets for Grades 4-12 will not be sent to schools/LEAs with the initial shipment.)

Test Preparation and Training

  • To gain access to view and/or download Kindergarten W-APT screener materials, please contact the ESOL Office in your county.
  • The online training courses for ACCESS for ELLs can be found in the WIDA Secure Portal. The ESOL Office in your county will need to set up an account for you.
  • All Test Administrators must take the applicable certification quizzes in the WIDA Secure Portal in order to administer ACCESS for ELLs.
  • Check with your ESOL Coordinator to find out whether you must recertify for ACCESS for ELLs. If administering ACCESS for ELLs Paper, you must certify for the Speaking quiz each year.
  • Your Local Accountability Coordinator (LAC) will be able to view past training history, but check with your ESOL Coordinator to find out whether you must turn in physical proof of your passing quiz grades each year.

The EL/Title III Office in the Maryland State Department of Education will offer state-wide Technology Coordinators, Test Administrators, and LAC training as follows:

  • Technology Coordinators: Webinars (to be recorded)
    • September 27, 2:00pm-3:00pm ET: Software Updates and Technology Readiness Checklist
    • October 4, 2:00pm-3:30pm ET: Technology Installations
  • Local Accountability Coordinators: A face-to-face training by a WIDA facilitator will be offered on the morning of October 29
  • Test Administrators: Face-to-face trainings by a WIDA facilitator will be offered on the afternoon of October 29. Additional training modules for online and paper test administration are available on the WIDA website

English Learners with Disabilities

ACCESS for ELLs accommodations are available ONLY for ELs with disabilities when they are listed in an approved IEP and 504 PlanPlease refer to the 2018-19 Maryland Content Tests vs ACCESS for ELLs for ELSWD Crosswalk for additional information. 

The Unique Accommodations Request Form should be completed in rare or unique situations when a request is made for an English learner (EL) with a disability to receive an accommodation that is not part of Maryland's approved list of accommodations for ACCESS for ELLs. 

State Policies and Guidance

See Maryland's updated EL Entry and Exit Criteria for minimum scores for placement and exit from EL services.

Professional Learning

The EL/Title III Office will offer targeted professional development workshops for local education agencies (LEAs) in the 2018-19 school year. These professional learning offerings will be shared directly with the LEAs' ESOL coordinators.


Dale Cornelius 
Program Manager, Online Assessment
(410) 767-3308

Ilhye Yoon
Lead Specialist, EL/Title III
(410) 767-0714

Hazar Biddle
EL/Title III Specialist
(410) 767-6577

WIDA Client Services Center
Contact us for questions about training materials or test administration procedures, classroom resources, or for problems with your WIDA Secure Portal account.
(866) 276-7735

Logging In

WIDA Secure Portal
Use the WIDA Secure Portal to access test training manuals and resources, as well as Online Professional Learning modules.

  • To obtain a new login as a Test Administrator, contact your ESOL or Local Accountability Coordinator.
  • For assistance with your account, contact the WIDA Client Services Center at or call (866) 276-7735.

WIDA Assessment Management System (WIDA AMS)
WIDA AMS is managed by our partner company Data Recognition Corporation (DRC). You can order ACCESS for ELLs materials, manage your student and test information, and find technology resources and testing software.

  • To obtain a new login as a Test Administrator, contact your ESOL or Local Accountability Coordinator.
  • New Local Accountability Coordinators should contact their ESOL Coordinator to obtain an account.
  • For assistance accessing your account, contact DRC Customer Service at or call (855) 787-9615.

Account Creation Flyer