Smarter Balanced Assessments (SBA)

  • What is the SBA?

    As a result of shifting to Common Core State Standards (CCSS), Washington state mandated that all school districts implement SBA starting in 2014-15. 
    • SBA are aligned to the ELA and math CCSS.
    • The ELA SBA evaluates students' learning in four claim areas: reading, writing, listening and speaking, and research.
    • The math SBA evaluates students' learning in three claim areas: concepts and procedures, problem solving and modeling & data analysis, and communicating reasoning.
    • SBA include two different types of tests: Computer Adaptive Test (CAT) and Performance Tasks (PT) with a classroom activity.
      1. CAT is an online testing method. Questions appear based on whether or not a student answers the previous question correctly or incorrectly. This gives a more accurate measure of each student's performance level.
      2. PT are extended activities that measure a student’s ability to integrate knowledge and skills across multiple standards—a key component of college and career readiness. Performance tasks will be used to better measure capacities such as depth of understanding, research skills and complex analysis. 
    • Smarter Balanced Assessments are administered online.


    Who takes the SBA?

    Students in grades 3-8, and 10. Students in grades 11 and 12 participate if they have yet to meet the graduation cut score.

    Students in the classes of 2019 and 2020 will be required to pass the SBA in ELA and math at the graduation cut score level to fulfill their state assessment graduation requirements.  Students in the classes of 2021 and beyond will be required to pass the SBA in ELA and math and the Washington Comprehensive Assessment of Science (WCAS) at the graduation cut score level.

    When is the SBA administered?

    The state of Washington establishes a testing window in the spring. Our district testing schedule is designed to make the best use of student instructional time and use resources efficiently. The daily testing schedule will be posted on the assessment calendar.