Badger Exam 3-8 : Wisconsin's Smarter Balanced Assessment

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The Badger Exam 3-8  is Wisconsin's Smarter Balanced Assessment.  In 2010, Wisconsin elected to join the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, one of the two national consortia that were formed to help establish a series of “next generation assessments” to measure students’ career and college readiness.

The Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (Smarter Balanced) is a state-led consortium working to develop next-generation assessments that accurately measure student progress toward college- and career-readiness. Smarter Balanced is one of two multistate consortia awarded funding from the U.S. Department of Education in 2010 to develop an assessment system aligned to the College and Career Ready Standards by the 2014-15 school year.

The components of the Smarter Balanced Assessment include:

The summative assessment will be administered during the last 8 weeks of the school year (measuring students’ cumulative progress from the past school year). Smarter summative assessments are administered in English Language Arts (ELA)  and Mathematics for grades 3-8.The summative assessment will consist of two parts: a computer adaptive test, and performance tasks that will be taken on a computer but will not be computer-adaptive. The summative assessment will:

  • Accurately describe both student achievement and growth of student learning as part of program evaluation and school, district, and state accountability systems;
  • Provide valid, reliable, and fair measures of students’ progress toward, and attainment of, the knowledge and skills required to be college- and career-ready; and
  • Capitalize on the strengths of computer-adaptive testing—efficient and precise measurement across the full range of achievement, and quick turnaround of results.

A secureonline reporting system that provides assessment results to students, parents, teachers, and administrators. The reports generated will show student achievement and progress toward mastery of the Common Core State Standards.


What's New


Handscoring Opportunity for Badger Exam 3-8:

ETS, the testing vendor for Badger Exam 3-8, is recruiting individuals to participate in the hand scoring of students’ responses for the Badger Exam. Scorers / Raters will be trained to apply rubrics for each prompt. This training will involve the use of benchmark sample responses which exemplify the quality required for each score point.  This increases inter-rater reliability so every prompt is scored using the same general criteria. Raters will be required to successfully pass the ETS certification exam allowing for independent scoring using ETS’s Online Network for Evaluation system.



Scoring begins in April 2015 and continues until June 5, 2015. To apply, visit


System Readiness TrainingThis training will provide important information that districts need to prepare for the online administration. Training topics will include:

  • -System and other requirements for online testing
  • -System resources and supports
  • -Installation procedures
  • -Key dates and task for preparing for the assessment
  • -Demonstration of the system capabilities 

An email was sent to all DACs inviting two staff from each district to participate in the live webinare during the week of November 3-7.  A recorded webinar will be available for all interested staff at a later date and will be posted at


Badger Exam 3-8 Calendar/Timeline now available at

Quick Contacts


DPI Contacts


Viji Somasundaram

Assessment Program Coordinator



Jennifer Teasdale

Education Program Specialist



Kristen Burton

Accommodations and Supports



Audrey Lesondak

Assessment for ELLs



Phil Cranley

Data, Student Demographics and Privacy Issues



Duane Dorn

Test Security




Smarter Website



For questions about this information, contact