OCBA Frequently Asked Questions - August 20, 2017
Accessibility and Accommodations

What defines a grade 13 student and grade 14 student?

Grade level 13 indicates “adult ed” and is for students enrolled in adult education classes with the district. Grade level 14 indicates “proficiency only” and is for students returning to the district to test who are not enrolled in classes.

Who should take Ohio’s State Tests during the Summer 2017 administration?

Section 1 of the Summer 2017 Test Administration Manual and Supplemental Instructions for Paper Testing outline which tests are available for each grade and subject for the summer administration. Section 5 of the Test Administration Manual provides more information on which students are eligible for the summer tests.

Which accessibility features or accommodations are available for online testers? For paper testers? What are the differences between how the features/accommodations are delivered across the two modes?

Refer to Ohio’s Accessibility Manual.

My student is receiving an accommodation (e.g., human read aloud, scribe, extended time). How do I mark the accommodation?

For paper testers: The district/school bubbles the appropriate “accommodations” box on the student’s demographic page. Depending on the test subject the following bubbles are available: read aloud, scribe, other.

For online testers: Test administrators mark the appropriate box under Accommodation Codes when approving the student to test in the Test Administrator Interface.

No action can be taken in TIDE to mark a specific accommodation.

Which paper-based special versions are available?

Starting in spring 2017, paper-based tests are now considered an accommodation. Conditions for providing a paper-based test can be found in Appendix A of Ohio’s Accessibility Manual.

Braille test booklets will be available for students whose IEP or 504 Plan specifies the use of Braille. For the summer 2017 administration, the district may order either Unified English Braille (UEB) or English Braille American Edition (EBAE) versions.

For students whose IEP or 504 Plan specifies the use of large-print materials, large-print test booklets, printed in 18-point type, will be available.

Which online accessibility features are available?

The following accessibility features can be turned on/off in TIDE manually or via a test settings file upload. They can also be set by the test administrator in the Test Administrator Interface when approving students to test:

Information on what these features are and how they can be enabled in the Test Administrator Interface is in the Test Administrator User Guide. Information on how to mark student records in TIDE for these features is in the TIDE User Guide. Guidance on which students should have access to these features is available in Ohio’s Accessibility Manual. Student test settings are not entered for students testing on paper.

My student is testing online. Can I use a paper student test booklet to administer a human read aloud?

No. Some questions differ between the paper and online test forms. The test administrator will read from the student’s device. Procedural guidance (steps for conducting a read aloud) is provided in the Test Administration Manual and Supplemental Instructions for Paper Testing.

Does every student have to be pre-identified?

Yes. Districts must Pre-ID every student who takes a test, regardless of whether the student tests online or on paper. For information on marking student eligibility and test mode, refer to the Guidance Document for 2016-17 Ohio Pre-ID Files.

How do I obtain a student ID for my chartered, nonpublic student?

Chartered nonpublic schools are responsible for creating student identifiers. The Department provides a four-letter code to each chartered nonpublic school. Student identifiers must use the following format: four letters indicating the school, followed by five numbers that identify the student. For example: ABCD12345. Student identifiers must be unique, and schools should keep track of which student is assigned which student identifier for tests. For additional assistance setting up Chartered nonpublic school student identifiers, contact Tony Newberry at ODE; 614-644-7356. For additional assistance setting up Home-school student identifiers, contact Andrea Mallory at ODE; 614-995-3571.

I uploaded a pre-ID file to TIDE for online administrations. If I upload a second file, will it overwrite the student records currently in TIDE?

New Pre-ID file uploads for Ohio’s State Tests, the Alternate Assessment and the Ohio English Language Proficiency Assessment will not overwrite previous Pre-ID file uploads in TIDE.

TIDE checks each record in the new file to determine what updates to make. If the SSID is new, TIDE appends the new record to the student listing. If the SSID is already present in the student listing, TIDE will update required fields. TIDE will only update optional fields when a non-blank value is present in the new file. It is important to note that the test eligibility and mode fields are now “required when applicable,” which follows the same rule.

Any records with SSIDs that were included as part of a prior upload but are not included on a subsequent Pre-ID file upload will remain in TIDE.

For more information on Pre-ID uploads, refer to the Guidance Document for 2016-17 Ohio Pre-ID Files.

Do districts have to submit separate Pre-ID files for each administration?

For the fall administration, districts can upload a single Pre-ID file containing student data for the fall, spring and summer administrations. Alternatively, districts may include only their summer testers in the Pre-ID file for the summer administration and wait to pre-identify their fall students until the relevant fall deadlines. Districts are responsible for ensuring that each student’s record is updated appropriately for each administration. For further guidance on how to Pre-ID students, refer to the Guidance Document for 2016-17 Ohio Pre-ID Files.

A new student transferred to my district/school. How can we confirm the student’s Part 1 test mode?

Districts/schools should make every effort to determine the student’s prior test mode and make that mode available when the student takes the remaining part of the test. Districts should work with the previous district and/or the student to determine which test mode the student took for either part. See the guidance provided in the Test Administration Manual.

Is accelerated testing permitted?

Yes. Accelerated students whose enrolled grade is below the tested grade may participate, but districts must pre-identify these students as accelerated testers in TIDE. For more information on marking accelerated testers, refer to the Guidance Document for 2016-17 Ohio Pre-ID Files.

Scheduling

How many test sessions are there for Ohio’s State Tests? How long is each session?

For the 2016-17 school year, there will not be separate administration windows for Part 1 and Part 2. Districts and schools may elect to administer both parts in one sitting, or they may administer Part 1 on one day and Part 2 on another day within the appropriate windows. Refer to each administration’s Test Administration Manual for guidance on scheduling test sessions.

When will districts and schools administer the Summer 2017 Ohio’s State Tests?

See the Important Dates tables on the portal for more information on administration dates.

How much time will students be given to take each part of the test?

A complete list of Testing Times is available. The testing times reflect the amount of time students have to complete the test. The time required for setting up the testing room, establishing online testing sessions (if applicable) and reading scripted directions to students to start the administration is in addition to the testing times. Test administrators are responsible for ensuring students have the specified amount of time to take the test in one day. Only students with the extended time accommodation are permitted time in excess of the published testing times.

Student Test Eligibility and Pre-ID

What defines a grade 13 student and grade 14 student?

Grade level 13 indicates “adult ed” and is for students enrolled in adult education classes with the district. Grade level 14 indicates “proficiency only” and is for students returning to the district to test who are not enrolled in classes.

Who should take Ohio’s State Tests during the Summer 2017 administration?

Section 1 of the Summer 2017 Test Administration Manual and Supplemental Instructions for Paper Testing outline which tests are available for each grade and subject for the summer administration. Section 5 of the Test Administration Manual provides more information on which students are eligible for the summer tests.

How many test sessions are there for Ohio’s State Tests? How long is each session?

For the 2016-17 school year, there will not be separate administration windows for Part 1 and Part 2. Districts and schools may elect to administer both parts in one sitting, or they may administer Part 1 on one day and Part 2 on another day within the appropriate windows. Refer to each administration’s Test Administration Manual for guidance on scheduling test sessions.

When will districts and schools administer the Summer 2017 Ohio’s State Tests?

See the Important Dates tables on the portal for more information on administration dates.

How much time will students be given to take each part of the test?

A complete list of Testing Times is available. The testing times reflect the amount of time students have to complete the test. The time required for setting up the testing room, establishing online testing sessions (if applicable) and reading scripted directions to students to start the administration is in addition to the testing times. Test administrators are responsible for ensuring students have the specified amount of time to take the test in one day. Only students with the extended time accommodation are permitted time in excess of the published testing times.

Does every student have to be pre-identified?

Yes. Districts must Pre-ID every student who takes a test, regardless of whether the student tests online or on paper. For information on marking student eligibility and test mode, refer to the Guidance Document for 2016-17 Ohio Pre-ID Files.

How do I obtain a student ID for my chartered, nonpublic student?

Chartered nonpublic schools are responsible for creating student identifiers. The Department provides a four-letter code to each chartered nonpublic school. Student identifiers must use the following format: four letters indicating the school, followed by five numbers that identify the student. For example: ABCD12345. Student identifiers must be unique, and schools should keep track of which student is assigned which student identifier for tests. For additional assistance setting up Chartered nonpublic school student identifiers, contact Tony Newberry at ODE; 614-644-7356. For additional assistance setting up Home-school student identifiers, contact Andrea Mallory at ODE; 614-995-3571.

I uploaded a pre-ID file to TIDE for online administrations. If I upload a second file, will it overwrite the student records currently in TIDE?

New Pre-ID file uploads for Ohio’s State Tests, the Alternate Assessment and the Ohio English Language Proficiency Assessment will not overwrite previous Pre-ID file uploads in TIDE.

TIDE checks each record in the new file to determine what updates to make. If the SSID is new, TIDE appends the new record to the student listing. If the SSID is already present in the student listing, TIDE will update required fields. TIDE will only update optional fields when a non-blank value is present in the new file. It is important to note that the test eligibility and mode fields are now “required when applicable,” which follows the same rule.

Any records with SSIDs that were included as part of a prior upload but are not included on a subsequent Pre-ID file upload will remain in TIDE.

For more information on Pre-ID uploads, refer to the Guidance Document for 2016-17 Ohio Pre-ID Files.

Do districts have to submit separate Pre-ID files for each administration?

For the fall administration, districts can upload a single Pre-ID file containing student data for the fall, spring and summer administrations. Alternatively, districts may include only their summer testers in the Pre-ID file for the summer administration and wait to pre-identify their fall students until the relevant fall deadlines. Districts are responsible for ensuring that each student’s record is updated appropriately for each administration. For further guidance on how to Pre-ID students, refer to the Guidance Document for 2016-17 Ohio Pre-ID Files.

A new student transferred to my district/school. How can we confirm the student’s Part 1 test mode?

Districts/schools should make every effort to determine the student’s prior test mode and make that mode available when the student takes the remaining part of the test. Districts should work with the previous district and/or the student to determine which test mode the student took for either part. See the guidance provided in the Test Administration Manual.

Is accelerated testing permitted?

Yes. Accelerated students whose enrolled grade is below the tested grade may participate, but districts must pre-identify these students as accelerated testers in TIDE. For more information on marking accelerated testers, refer to the Guidance Document for 2016-17 Ohio Pre-ID Files.

Technology for Online Testing

How can I download the secure browser?

To download the secure browser for your operating system, refer to Secure Browsers on the Portal home page and the Secure Browser Installation Manual.

What are the minimum technology requirements for online testing?

All devices used for online testing must meet hardware and operating system specifications. For more information on the minimum technology requirements refer to the Online System Requirements document on the Ohio’s State Tests Portal.

I have an operating system that is newer than the requirements listed. Can I use it?

AIR intends to support a new version of a currently supported operating system within 90 days of official release. If AIR is able to test the new operating system in less time, we will add the OS to the “supported” list when it is verified. If we find serious issues with a new operating system version, it can sometimes take longer than 90 days. For this reason, you should disable automatic operating system updates. For more information on supported operating systems refer the Online System Requirements document on the Ohio’s State Tests Portal.

I have a browser that is newer than the requirements listed. Can I use it?

Student testing requires the use of the secure browser or secure test app. Other sites, including the Test Administrator Interface and Practice Sites, can be accessed from a supported browser.

For Chrome and Firefox, which are released on rapid cycles (approximately every six weeks), AIR does not block new versions from accessing the Test Administrator Interface and Practice Sites. We work closely with Google and Mozilla (respectively) to ensure compatibility between their browsers and our systems.

For Internet Explorer and Safari, AIR does block new versions from accessing the Test Administrator Interface and Practice Sites until we can verify that all features work correctly. This typically takes 90 days but can be longer in some cases.

For all supported browsers, AIR will periodically update the Online System Requirements document with newer versions as they have been verified.

How can test administrators prepare for the test administration?

Test administrators who will be testing students online should review the Test Administrator Certification Course and Companion Doc, the Test Administrator Practice Site, the Test Administration Manual, and the Test Administrator User Guide.

Test administrators who will be testing students on paper should review the Supplemental Instructions for Paper Testing. Test administrators who will administer online tests must review the Online Testing Highlights and Script.

Is there a prescribed test order for administering the Ohio’s State Tests?

No. Unlike OGT, which has a prescribed test order, districts and schools can select whichever order they would like for the administration of Ohio’s State Tests. For example, districts and schools can administer science first, then English language arts or vice versa.

Are schools required to administer Ohio’s State Tests online?

Yes. Beginning in 2017, all districts and schools must deliver Ohio’s State Tests online unless they can demonstrate the need for paper tests. Information about this process can be located on the Department’s website here.

Do test administrators need to sign a non-disclosure agreement form?

No. The Department does not require the use of a statewide non-disclosure agreement. However, districts may have a local policy regarding non-disclosure. Test administrators should discuss any local policy regarding non-disclosure with their superintendent or other district staff.

Test Administration

How can test administrators prepare for the test administration?

Test administrators who will be testing students online should review the Test Administrator Certification Course and Companion Doc, the Test Administrator Practice Site, the Test Administration Manual, and the Test Administrator User Guide.

Test administrators who will be testing students on paper should review the Supplemental Instructions for Paper Testing. Test administrators who will administer online tests must review the Online Testing Highlights and Script.

Is there a prescribed test order for administering the Ohio’s State Tests?

No. Unlike OGT, which has a prescribed test order, districts and schools can select whichever order they would like for the administration of Ohio’s State Tests. For example, districts and schools can administer science first, then English language arts or vice versa.

Are schools required to administer Ohio’s State Tests online?

Yes. Beginning in 2017, all districts and schools must deliver Ohio’s State Tests online unless they can demonstrate the need for paper tests. Information about this process can be located on the Department’s website here.

Do test administrators need to sign a non-disclosure agreement form?

No. The Department does not require the use of a statewide non-disclosure agreement. However, districts may have a local policy regarding non-disclosure. Test administrators should discuss any local policy regarding non-disclosure with their superintendent or other district staff.

User Accounts

How do I activate my user account or reset my password?

Step by step directions on activating user accounts and resetting passwords are available in the TIDE FAQ.

What user roles are available?

A summary of user roles can be found in the Ohio Online User Role Matrix. Additional information about user roles is in the TIDE User Management Guidance Document and the TIDE User Guide.

Do teachers, test administrators or proctors for Ohio’s State Tests need to be identified in TIDE?

Personnel who will administer Ohio’s State Tests online need accounts to access online systems. DTCs (or a designee) need to create these accounts in TIDE. The person administering the tests will be assigned either the Teacher (TE) role or the Test Administrator (TA) role in TIDE. Doing so will provide these users an appropriate level of access to TIDE, the Test Delivery System, and the Online Reporting System (ORS).

Personnel who will administer Ohio’s State Tests on paper and who should have access to student scores in ORS should have an account with appropriate ORS access.

Does a user need to have a separate account created for each school where the user administers testing?

No. User accounts can be associated with multiple schools and districts. Test coordinators add users to each school where the user administers tests. For Ohio’s State Tests, students cannot join a session unless the user who created the session is associated with the same school where the student is pre-identified. See the TIDE User Guide for more information about how to add a user to multiple schools.