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2016 WERA Conference
This session highlighted important considerations in the transition from the Grades 5 and 8 Science MSPs and the high school Biology EOC to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) assessments. We discussed the resources available on the science assessment webpage for the current assessments (MSPs, Biology EOC) and future assessments (NGSS); the development and implementation of the NGSS assessments; and the NGSS assessment structure.

Current Assessments
Washington State 2009 K-12 Science Learning Standards
The 5th and 8th grade Science Measurements of Student Progress (MSP) and the Biology End-of-Course Exam (EOC) will be administered in spring 2017.

Future Assessments
Washington State 2013 K-12 Science Learning Standards (Next Generation Science Standards-NGSS)
Next Generation Science assessments begin in spring 2018.

NGSS Field Test Update
There will be a voluntary online standalone field test for high school from May 1, 2017 to June 15, 2017. High school teachers and principals who would like their students to participate in the high school pilot are encouraged to let their district testing coordinator know about their interest.

High School Science Field Test Information (PPT) - Updated

NGSS pilot items will be embedded in the online grades 5 and 8 MSP tests in spring 2016 and 2017. No extra action is needed by schools or districts to participate in the piloting at grades 5 and 8.

High School Science Field Test FAQ - NEW

Frequently Asked Questions
This document provides answers to a list of frequently asked questions about the current and future state science assessments.

Washington High School Assessments and Assessment Graduation Requirements
This 2016-17 high school assessments and assessment graduation requirements document provides details on the assessments available to high school students through the class of 2020.

Tentative Science Assessment Timeline


Grade 5

Grade 8

High School

Spring 2017

Measurements of Student Progress

Based on 2009 Science Standards

Measurements of Student Progress

Based on 2009 Science Standards

Biology End-of-Course for accountability and graduation (Grade 10)

Based on 2009 Science Standards

Spring 2018

Next Generation Science Assessment

Based on 3-5 band of NGSS

Next Generation Science Assessment

Based on middle school band of NGSS

Next Generation Science Assessment for accountability (Grade 11)

Based on high school band of NGSS

Biology EOC if needed to meet assessment grad requirement

* Legislative intent regarding high school science assessment

  • 2013 Engrossed House Bill 1450
  • 2015 Senate

Classes of 2017 and beyond must pass the state science exam to graduate

  • Biology EOC until a comprehensive NGSS Test is administered (Spring 2018)

Transition period where either the biology EOC or the high school NGSS assessment could be used for graduation purpose, much like math's transition to Smarter Balanced assessments.


   Updated 4/6/2017

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