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OAKS, or Oregon Assessment of Knowledge and Skills, assesses students’ mastery of Oregon content standards. OAKS Online now includes the new Smarter Balanced assessments for English language arts/literacy and mathematics.
Scores for ELPA21 from the 2015-2016 school year are now available in the Online Reporting System (ORS) for all institutions and districts. For more information on using ORS, please see the Online Reporting System User Guide.
Apple recently released Mac OS X 10.12 for desktop systems. AIR’s preliminary testing identified security issues with this operating system. As such, Mac OS X 10.12 is not supported for any assessments at this time.
Additionally, Google recently released Chrome OS 54. AIR’s preliminary testing identified an issue with the text-to-speech tool for ELPA21 assessments only. As such, users with the Chrome 54 operating system installed on a Chromebook will be blocked from taking the ELPA21 assessments at this time. ELPA21 assessments can be taken on other operating systems or earlier versions of Chrome OS. ELPA21 practice tests can be taken in the secure browser on other operating systems and earlier versions of Chrome OS, and in the Chrome browser on any operating system other than Chrome OS 54.
AIR continues to investigate resolutions for the identified issues, and an announcement will be posted on the OAKS Portal if and when these operating systems are approved for testing.
Schools that use LightSpeed may encounter a problem with the Secure Browser due to the program running in the background. Students may be presented with a “Test Environment Not Secure” error message, preventing students from testing. The problem resides in the capture element of LightSpeed, which needs to be disabled in order to allow testing on the Secure Browser. This can be done in the ‘application policies’ setting. Schools and districts should contact their vendor with questions about updating this setting.
Updated Smarter Balanced Mathematics and English Language Arts (ELA), ELPA 21, and OAKS Science and Social Sciences practice tests and an updated TA Training Site are now available. Practice tests can be accessed using supported web browsers or the Oregon Secure Browser. The 2016-2017 TA User Guide has also been posted in the Resources section of the OAKS Portal and on the ODE website.
These practice tests provide an opportunity for Oregon teachers and students to familiarize themselves with the navigation and functionality of the online tests, as well as with the embedded accessibility supports described in the Oregon Accessibility Manual. The TA Interface has been updated this year to make it easier for test administrators to identify and select the tests they want to administer. All test administrators, including test administrators who have used the TA Interface in previous years, should practice setting up a test session using the updated TA Training Site prior to administering an operational test.
Smarter Balanced Mathematics and OAKS Science and Social Sciences tests include a different calculator than the one used in previous years. It is recommended that students use the practice tests to familiarize themselves with this new calculator. A Calculator Manual has been posted to the Resources section of the OAKS portal for further information.
The new TIDE is now available for 2016-2017 users. As DTCs complete their 2016-2017 training requirements, their accounts will be activated. DTCs can then add other district-level and school-level users to TIDE, and both district-level and school-level users can begin updating student test settings. The 2016-2017 TIDE User Guide has been posted in the Resources section of the OAKS Portal to provide further information about the new features in TIDE and facilitate the user upload and student settings update processes.
Please note that the Test Windows module is not yet available at this time due to issues identified by AIR during testing. AIR is working on a fix and projects to have the issue resolved by December 1. An announcement will be posted to the portal once Test Windows become available.
If you have any questions about 2016-2017 TIDE, please contact your Regional ESD Partner or the AIR helpdesk at email@example.com or 1-866-509-OAKS (6257).
The AIR issue identified on September 16, 2016 relating to an error occurring when users attempted to download individual student reports from the Online Reporting System in PDF form on Chrome Browser 53 has been resolved. Users should now be able to download individual student report PDFs successfully on this Chrome browser in addition to all other supported browsers. If you have any questions, please contact the AIR helpdesk at firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-866-509-OAKS (6257). Thank you for your patience!
Linux Secure Browser 9.2 is now available for download. This update addresses an issue from version 9.1 that prevented successful installation of the browser. AIR recommends that all schools and districts using Linux operating systems for assessment in 2016-2017 download and install this new version of the Linux secure browser. Installation information can be found in the 2016-2017 version of the Secure Browser Installation Manual.
AIR continues to conduct testing and QA on the recently released iOS 10. AIR identified issues relating to loading videos and enabling the microphone from the Secure Browser app running iOS 10. Until these issues have been fixed, iOS 10 is not supported. Districts should not use the operating system auto-update features on devices that are to be used for student testing. The Operating System Support Plan lists the operating systems that are supported for student testing.
AIR recently discovered an issue in which the 2016-2017 versions of the Secure Browser may not properly launch when using a proxy server with Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. This issue has not been reported by any users in Oregon.
The “Proxy Settings for Desktop Secure Browsers” section of the Secure Browser Installation Manual has been updated to include ‘hash64’ encoded URLs to the command line codes for setting the proxy on all operating systems. Schools and districts with proxy servers should use these updated commands to pass proxy settings to the Secure Browser so that it will launch successfully. If you need assistance installing the 2016-17 secure browser, please contact the AIR helpdesk at email@example.com or 1-866-509-OAKS (6257).
The OAKS Online Systems Scheduled Downtime for the 2016-2017 school year is now available at oaksportal.org. This schedule lists the dates that OAKS Online Systems (operational tests, practice tests, TIDE, online reporting) will be offline for maintenance and deployments. Districts should refer to this schedule when planning assessment administration for the 2016-2017 school year.
Districts receiving Kindergarten Assessment materials will receive a packing slip inside each shrink wrapped package that states, “Secure Materials” at the top of the page. This wording on the packing slip was used by the American Institutes for Research (AIR) in reference to the type of packaging used, and was not meant to characterize the security of the Kindergarten Assessment materials. As a reminder, the 2016-17 Kindergarten Assessment materials are not secure materials. AIR regrets causing any confusion.
If you have any questions regarding the security of the 2016-17 Kindergarten Assessment materials please contact your ESD partner.
The Windows and Mac OS X secure browsers for the 2016-2017 school year are now all available for download. As previously announced, the Linux secure browser will be released on Friday, July 22.
In coordination with the release of the Windows and Mac OS X secure browsers, the Secure Browser Installation Manual, Technical Specifications Manual for Online Testing, and Operating System Support Plan documents have been updated to reflect 2016-2017 information.
As stated in the Oregon Accessibility Manual, the Smarter Balanced Math tests support full Spanish translation of each Math stimulus and item that appears stacked above the original English. In the past weeks, ODE has received a number of questions regarding stacked Spanish/English math items that have drag-and-drop answer areas that are only presented in Spanish (not stacked Spanish/English). This specific item type was designed to only allow for one answer area, requiring the Smarter Balanced Consortium to choose between presenting the answer area in either Spanish or English, not both. Given this design limitation, the Smarter Balanced Consortium prioritized displaying the answer area in Spanish instead of English to best align with the accessibility guideline of providing translation for students whose primary language is not English and who use dual language supports in the classroom.
In response to the concerns which ODE has shared about this item type on behalf of Oregon school districts, the Smarter Balanced Consortium has indicated that they are working with their technical team to identify ways to provide more flexibility for items of this type, and that they are working with their mathematics content team to limit the continued development of this item type until the technology can be updated to provide greater flexibility. For students who are assigned the Spanish translation support for the Math test, please use the practice test and explain to the student before testing begins about this item type to evaluate whether the student’s language needs will be best met by taking the test in English or in Spanish, recognizing that if the student tests in Spanish, for this particular item type, the answer area will be presented in Spanish only.
AIR has identified an issue on all Mac operating systems in which students that have American Sign Language (ASL) videos enabled are unable to view the ASL video content. AIR recommends that students with American Sign Language accommodation test on a computer with a different operating system for 2015-16 test administration.
We apologize for the inconvenience.
For ELA Performance Tasks, the word pronunciation feature of the embedded dictionary is only available on non-iOS devices. Please ensure that another supported platform is available for students who need access to this feature.
Users that update their Windows computers to Windows 10 after installing the OAKS Secure Browser have reported that the Secure Browser often does not open correctly following the update. When this happens, resetting the Secure Browser profile as described in Appendix B of the Secure Browser Installation Manual resolves the issue. Your regional ESD partner is available to answer questions.
As previously announced, the OAKS Diagnostic Tool includes a page that is designed for testing headsets for use with ELPA21. To access this tool, open the secure browser, click on the link to go to the Practice Test site, and then click on the link to “Run Diagnostics.” When the diagnostic tool opens, click on “Recording and Playback Check.” You will be taken through a series of checks to evaluate how the headset performs with listening and speaking items. The diagnostic check was previously only available for desktop and laptop computers running supported versions of Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. AIR has now expanded the diagnostic check so that it can be used to evaluate headsets with iPads and Chromebooks.