Development of ACCESS for ELLs 2.0 was funded by the ASSETS Grant as part of a suite of assessment tools to help English Learners succeed in becoming college and career-ready. ASSETS was a $10.5 million dollar Enhanced Assessment Grant (EAG) from the US Department of Education designed to create this next generation of innovative and comprehensive assessment tools.
The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction served as the fiscal agent for the ASSETS grant, and worked with WIDA to manage a consortium of 36 states and territories to guide the development of ACCESS for ELLs 2.0. The initial grant period was from September 2011 to September 2015. During this period, the bulk of the work on ACCESS for ELLs 2.0, professional development, formative teaching resources, and interim assessments was completed. ASSETS was extended beyond September 2015 to complete work on the WIDA Online.
Grant partners included:
- Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL)
- Data Recognition Corporation (DRC)
- MetriTech, Inc.
- University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
- WIDA (Managing Partner)
State Education Agencies (SEAs) played an active role in the design, implementation, governance, and policy-making of the assessment system. The ASSETS consortium largely overlapped the WIDA consortium, and included subcommittees focused on Accommodations, Technology and Implementation, National Level EL Policy, and numerous other subgroups of subject matter experts representing the diverse WIDA/ASSETS consortium.
Comprehensive Assessment System
The consortium guided the development of technology-based summative, interim, and screener assessments in addition to formative assessment resources for use in the classroom. The existing WIDA WAPT and ACCESS for ELLs assessments were being replaced with technology-based assessments, designed to be supplemented with interim assessments and formative assessment resources. The ACCESS for ELLs 2.0 assessment suite was released in the 201516 school year.
The consortium guided work to create professional development related to implementing the assessment system, which includes effectively using assessment results. This PD was released in the 2015-16 school year, in the form of webinars, onsite workshops, and online training modules, and is annually updated.
For current information on the WIDA consortium, see their Member States page.
ASSETS Grant History
The ASSETS Project website contains more detailed information on the work done under the grant and the theoretical underpinnings of the new assessments.