WebbAlign Alignment Studies

Obtain the evidence you need to support the validity of your assessments and identify areas that need revisions.

Alignment is a prerequisite condition for making valid inferences about students’ attainment of course objectives based on assessment results. Because alignment is a property of the relationship between an assessment and a set of standards, if alignment is found to be less than desired, then alignment can be improved by changing either the assessments or the set of standards. Consequently, alignment study results can contribute to validation of a program and/or can inform program improvements.

The Webb team has conducted alignment studies in more than 25 states, as well as for commercial vendors and international clients. Our approach evaluates alignment according to four criteria that were developed with input from the National Institute for Science Education (NISE), the Council of Chief School Officers (CCSSO), state curriculum supervisors, and other assessment experts. The four criteria are: 

  1. Categorical Concurrence
  2. Depth-of-knowledge Consistency
  3. Range-of-knowledge Correspondence
  4. Balance of Representation

The WebbAlign Process

A trained team of reviewers conducts an alignment analysis. The reviewers are content area experts and have extensive training and experience with the DOK framework as well as the WebbAlign process. Data are entered into an online tool. Exact agreement among reviewers is desirable, but not necessary since results will be averaged among the total number of reviewers. The online tool reports on statistical agreement through pairwise comparison and intraclass correlation. Results are provided in a thorough report that describes the level of alignment and identifies any alignment issues. If alignment issues are identified, changes are suggested to help address any problems.

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