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NYS Alternate Assessment

The NY State Alternate Assessment allows students with severe cognitive disabilities to demonstrate their performance toward achieving the New York State learning standards for English Language Arts (ELA), Mathematics, and Science. This assessment measures student knowledge on Essential Elements. Essential Elements are alternate achievement standards that are reduced in depth and breadth from the New York Learning Standards.  New York State contracts with Dynamic Learning Maps to provide a computer-delivered adaptive assessment that customizes the assessment to the individual abilities and needs of the student.

Who takes this test?
The Committee on Special Education (CSE) determines student eligibility for participation in NY State Alternative Assessment. Eligible students have an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) that specifically identifies them as eligible for this assessment.

Students in grades 3-8 must be assessed once a year using assessment materials based on their ages (nine through 14 years old). The secondary-level NY State Alternate Assessment for high school students is administered once, when students are 17 years old.

When is this test given?
The school year 2023-24 administration dates are typically March through June. Please visit our Testing & Assessment Calendar Page for specific testing dates or your can visit the New York State Education's Department testing schedule page.  Please speak to your child's teacher if you have any questions or concerns with the testing schedule. 

What is on the test?
The Dynamic Learning Maps alternate assessments are delivered in testlets. Each testlet contains an engagement activity and three to nine items.

How is the test scored?
The assessment is scored by Dynamic Learning Maps.

How are the results reported?
Schools provide parents with an Individual Score Report.

How are the results used?
NY State Alternate Assessment scores are used to track a child’s progress on grade-level alternate achievement standards for families and teachers. They may be used to guide conversations about a child’s IEP or to determine educational priorities and academic goals.