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Short-Response Items

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SNAP has developed some short-response items to model what multidimensional short items aligned to NGSS could look like.

The main goals underlying the design of these items were:

  1. to probe the concepts and practices that are central to the PE, not just what is easy to assess;
  2. to model two-dimensional assessment. The items were developed so that they could each provide some evidence of two-dimensional reasoning, but we found that short sets of items related to the same stimulus provided much broader insight into two or even three dimensions; and
  3. to model assessments that are grounded in phenomena.

A critical step in the process of developing these types of items requires conducting cognitive labs with diverse groups of students to validate that the items are eliciting the reasoning that they were intended to measure. During these cognitive labs we learned a lot about how students interact with assessments designed for NGSS. The links below will bring you to a few  short sets of these draft items. See the READ THIS document accompanying each set to learn about some insights from our work with students.

Gravity items

Physical Science (5th grade)

5-PS2-1 Support an argument that the gravitational force exerted by Earth on objects is directed down.

Physical Science (MS)

Physical Science (MS)

MS-PS4-1 Use mathematical representations to describe a simple model for waves that includes how amplitude of a wave is related to the energy in in a wave.

Waves items

Rock cycle items

Earth Science (MS)

PE: Develop a model to describe the cycling of Earth's materials and the flow of energy that drives this process. (MS-ESS2-1)

Earth Science (MS)


PE: Analyze and interpret data on natural hazards to forecast future catastrophic events and inform the development of technologies to mitigate their effects. (MS-ESS3-2)

KE items

Physical Science (MS)

PE: Construct and interpret graphical displays of data to describe the relationships of kinetic energy to the mass of an object and to the speed of an object. (MS-PS3-1)