These are tests provided by the state that have practice questions for the TCAP. In the past, I’ve used these to look at sentence starters to determine what kind of language the state uses when asking questions relating to a particular skill.
7th Grade Practice Tests:
The practice tests are also provided by the state. In the past, I’ve used questions from the Item Samplers in class and I don’t use questions from the Practice Tests in class. This way, I can use these as a Mock TCAP before the test preparation to determine which skills students struggle with the most. I’ve also used the questions on weekly progress monitoring quizzes to determine student growth. I like to use these questions because they provide the most realistic data since they are questions coming directly from the state.
8th Grade Practice Tests:
When I begin to run out of reading passages to draw from when constructing practice for the TCAP, I’ve drawn from the 8th Grade ELA Practice Tests in the past. Be careful when pulling questions from these tests. While there are several standards with the same verbage, the questions are more rigorous.
Standards Strands for 7th ELA
Use this document provided by the state to track the standards you are teaching. You should also assess the percentage assessed for each of the six strands to determine how much emphasis you want to place on the standards.
It’s also important to know the cutoff percentages for Below Basic, Basic, Proficient, and Advanced. While 92% was the aggregated cut score for Advanced last year, the cutoff for Advanced differs per reporting category. The document below was produced by Tennessee DOE and outlines the number of questions that were included in each reporting category for the 2013 test and the percentage cutoffs for each level of mastery.