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Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium
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Welcome to the Smarter Balanced Field Test

Click on one of the three tabs to read about General Updates, Known Technical Issues, or Archived Issues.

  • General Updates
  • Known Technical Issues
    Updated: March 25, 2014
  • Archived Issues
  • Though the Field Test ended on June 13, TIDE and ORS will remain open for additional time in order to allow designated administrators to finalize student information and to reconcile participation records. TIDE will stay open through June 20 and ORS will stay open through June 27.

    Added June 16, 2014
  • To create a test session users must use the [Select All] button. The system will automatically select only those tests for which your students are eligible.  Disregard the [sort by] radio buttons and test-specific checkboxes on the screen.

    Added March 25, 2014
  • Guidance on Creating a Session ID and Making Test Selections is now available. This document (Session ID and Test Selection Instructions for Test Administrators) provides step-by-step instructions for Test Administrators to create a session ID and make test selections. See Resources and Documentation for access to this document.

    Added March 24, 2014
  • The Test Administrator User Guide, TIDE User Guide, ORS User Guide, and Technical Specifications Manual for Online Testing have been updated. A description of the updates is posted under the Resources and Documentation section of the Field Test Portal.

    Added March 24, 2014
  • The secure mobile browser 2.2 for the iPad is available on the App store. This update is not required, but is strongly recommended and will improve students’ testing experience.

    Added March 21, 2014
  • Online Reporting System (ORS) User Guide is now available. 

    The Online Reporting System enables authorized users to view test progress information for students participating in the spring 2014 Smarter Balanced Field Test. The ORS User Guide provides information about the ORS features that are available to authorized state, district, and school personnel. See Resources and Documentation for access to this document.

    Added March 17, 2014
  • Smarter Balanced has shifted the start of the Field Test. The testing window will be Tuesday, March 25 through Friday, June 6.

    Added March 14, 2014
  • Several of the Classroom Activities have been updated on March 13th. Please download and use the revised versions.

    Added March 13, 2014
  • Test Administrator User Guide is now available.

    This resource supports individuals using the Test Delivery System applications to manage testing for students participating in the Field Test. This user guide provides information about the Test Delivery System, including the Test Administrator and student applications. See Resources and Documentation for access to this document.

    Added March 12, 2014
  • A document has been posted with information for districts and schools starting the Field Test during window two, April 7 – April 25. The document includes various tips and important reminders based on feedback and questions that were received during the first week of the Field Test. See Resources and Documentation for access to this document.

    Added April 1, 2014
  • The document explaining how students can adjust the volume within the secure browser while testing has been updated. This document now includes instructions for students testing on desktops/laptops, iPads, Android tablets, and Chromebooks, and is located on the Test Administrator Resources section of the portal.

    Added May 9, 2014
  • The Appeals Guidance document has been posted to the Resources and Documentation page of the portal. This document describes the conditions under which a test may be invalidated, reset, reopened or restored.

    Added April 24, 2014
  • A widely used piece of software, OpenSSL, has been found to have a security hole, which could have been exploited.  We are relieved to be able to announce that AIR servers in use for test delivery and the storage of student data do not make use of this software, and our users are not at risk of compromise from this security hole.

    Added April 11, 2014
  • Audio Guidance for Test Administrators is now available. This document helps Test Administrators troubleshoot problems with audio features.

    Added April 10, 2014
  • The Appeals functionality is now fully operational.  This system allows authorized users to submit and view requests for invalidatingresettingreopening or restoring student’s tests (more information about the Appeals process can be found in the TIDE User Guide on p. 59-75). All requests must be approved by a state education agency lead, through the TIDE Appeals system.

    Added April 7, 2014
  • The Resources and Documentation page has been reorganized. The Additional Resources section has been divided into three sections to provide specific information for TAs, SCs and DCs, and students. This format is intended to support all users toward a successful Field Test experience.

    Added April 7, 2014
  • The following Field Test downtimes have been updated.

    The Field Test will be unavailable on the following dates:

    Field Test Downtime
    Friday, April 11 – Sunday, April 13, 2014
    Thursday, May 8 – Sunday, May 11, 2014
    Added April 4, 2014
  • Smarter Balanced has released several new resources designed to support test administration. See Resources and Documentation for access to these documents. Recently added documents are marked “new.”

    Added March 12, 2014
  • Classroom activity materials and classroom activity assignments are now available in the Classroom Activities section. 

    Added March 11, 2014
  • Based on functional tests performed by Apple and assurances from Apple that the Single App Mode in iOS 6 and Autonomous Single App Mode in iOS 7 work the same way on all models of iPad, Smarter Balanced has agreed to support the iPad Air for use on the Field Test.

    Added March 4, 2014
  • Smarter Balanced has released a comprehensive Field Test Communications Toolkit to assist member states—and their districts and schools—in providing information to key stakeholders about the upcoming Field Test.  See Resources and Documentation for access to all the toolkit documents.

    Added February 21, 2014
  • Test Information Distribution Engine (TIDE) is now open.
    TIDE is now open. TIDE provides administrators with the tools to add and manage users and students participating in the Smarter Balanced Field Test.

    All users can access TIDE by clicking the [Online TIDE System] card. State-level users should have received an email with information about accessing TIDE. Within their own state, state users can create accounts in TIDE for other state users, District Administrators (if applicable in your state), District Test Coordinators, School Test Coordinators, and Test Administrators. All Field Test Administrators need to be added to TIDE before they can set up and administer test sessions.

    Added January 14, 2014
  • The TIDE appeals system will become available on April 1. If between March 25 and March 31, a district or school has an urgent need to submit an appeal in TIDE, please contact the help desk at 1-855-833-1969 or smarterbalancedhelpdesk@ets.org.

    Added March 25, 2014
  • When using the Secure browser 2.2 and iOS 7.1 on the iPad, students will be able to activate the native dictionary on text that they type in constructed response dialogue boxes. Students also can have the iPad read any text they write using the Speak Text feature. Smarter Balanced asks that test administrators monitor students during testing to prevent students from using these features. We will continue to work on addressing both issues, and we will make sure they are resolved for the operational assessment next year.

    Added March 25, 2014
  • RESOLVED – During the login/test selection process, some 9th and 10th grade students were unable to select and begin their Non-PT tests, and were only able to see the PT tests that were assigned to them. This issue has been resolved. Students are now able to see and select from any eligible test that is part of the current test session.

    Added March 27, 2014
  • Schools have reported to Smarter Balanced that when teachers or students access the Training or Practice Test via the secure browser on an iPad running the iOS 7.0 operating system, they experience intermittent problems when trying to select the correct grade from the grade drop-down menu.

    To resolve this problem, the test delivery contractor recommends that users close out of the secure browser and log in again. Some users have indicated that this solution is not consistently successful, so multiple attempts may be required.

    Please note that the grade drop-down menu will affect ONLY the Practice and Training tests. For the field test, students testing on an iPad using iOS 7.0 may be unable to use some of the drop-down menus in the test that would allow them to navigate back to previous questions.  Please refer to the iPad Navigation document for alternate methods of navigating back to previous questions.

    Upgrading to iOS 7.1 will address the “drop down” selector issues that were reported on the Practice Test and when navigating among items flagged for review.

    Added March 24, 2014
  • RESOLVED – Beginning Monday, March 31, all students starting the ELA non-PT with a TIDE test setting of Closed Captioning  will receive an ELA non-PT without listening questions. Students with Closed Captioning who have submitted the ELA non-PT or already navigated through listening items  with assistance from  the test administrator do not need to reset the assessment. (Note: On the operational assessment in the Spring 2015, Closed C​aptioning will be provided on ELA listening stimuli.)

    Added March 31, 2014
  • RESOLVED – Chromebook users who upgraded to operating system version 34 may have been previously unable to successfully utilize the Text-to-Speech feature.

    Chrome OS Kiosk App Update

    AIR has released version 2.6 of the AIRSecureTest app. This version addresses the text-to-speech issues that occur in Chrome OS version 34. This app should automatically update on managed Chromebook devices. The update will also reset your secure browser settings.

    When you open the AIRSecureTest app from the Chromebook login screen, the launchpad page will display. You will have to select your state and assessment program again. Once these are selected, the secure browser login page will load.

    Users who did not update to Chrome OS version 33 or 34 may not receive the update automatically. To verify that the app has updated:

    1. Log into a Chromebook (do not browse as a guest user). 
    2. Open the Chrome browser and enter chrome://extensions into the URL field. If necessary, check the box next to “Developer mode.”
    3. Verify that the version number for AIRSecureTest displays 2.6.0.0. (Note: It may take up to a minute for the version number to update as it may install it upon bootup/login.)

    If automatic updates for extensions and apps are turned off for your Chromebooks, you will need to click [Update extensions now].

    Added June 2, 2014
  • RESOLVED – Google recently released version 34 of its Chrome operating system. Google identified a known issue with this release that may have resulted in the AIRSecureTest mobile secure browser kiosk app not appearing on managed Chromebooks. This issue has been resolved.

    Added April 11, 2014