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									                                 NECAP Calculator Policy
                                                   8/10/2011




Policy

The items on the mathematics test are designed so that calculators are not
required to solve any of the problems. The Department of Education has set
limits on the use of calculators during statewide assessment. These limits specify
when calculators may be used during assessment and which devices are
allowable. However, within these limits, the fundamental decision about whether
or not to use calculators is made at the local school level.

When are calculators permitted?
Calculators are permitted only during Session 2 and Session 3 of the mathematics
test at all grade levels (3-8). Calculators are not permitted on Session 1 of the
mathematics test. If your school does not have enough calculators for all
students, students may use their own. Students may not share calculators during
testing.

When appropriate, what types of calculators are permitted?
A four function calculator is sufficient; however, students may use a scientific or
graphing calculator.

Certain devices are prohibited: The following devices and/or calculators with
the following features are prohibited: pocket organizers, handheld or laptop
computers, electronic writing pads or pen-input devices, cellular phones or other
wireless communication devices, and calculators with a “QWERTY” keyboard. If
you have a question regarding a particular calculator please contact your state
department of education.



Summary of Tools Allowed on Each Mathematics Session of the NECAP

                            Session 1           Session 2           Session 3
                            (Non-tool)         (Tool Active)       (Tool Active)
 Calculator Active                                   X                   X
 Non-Calculator                 X
 Ruler Active                                        X                   X
 Protractor Active                                   X                   X
 Potential Items                                     X                   X
 involving punch-
 out manipulatives
Frequently Asked Questions about Calculator Usage on the NECAP
Q1: Our district has implemented a no calculator policy at certain grades, should
we give calculators to our students on Session 2 and Session 3 of the NECAP
mathematics assessment?

      A1: If calculators are not typically used in the classroom, providing
      calculators to students for the first time on the state assessment may be
      distracting and counterproductive. The items on the mathematics test are
      designed so that calculators are not required to solve any of the problems.

Q2: Will students who use a calculator on Session 2 and Session 3 of the NECAP
mathematics assessment have an advantage over students who do not use a
calculator on Session 2 or Session 3?

      A2: We believe that calculator usage should mirror classroom practice.
      Students who are unfamiliar with using calculators may be disadvantaged
      or distracted on Session 2 and Session 3 of the NECAP if using a calculator
      for the first time or a calculator that they are not familiar with. Conversely,
      students who frequently use a calculator in the classroom may be
      disadvantaged if they are not allowed to use a calculator on Session 2 and
      Session 3 of the NECAP mathematics assessment.

Q3: Our school/district does not have enough calculators to provide calculators for
every student. Is the NECAP calculator policy an unfunded state mandate?

      A3: The items on the mathematics test are designed so that calculators are
      not required to solve any of the problems. Calculator usage on the state
      assessment should mirror classroom practice. If your school/district typically
      shares calculators among classrooms that will need to take the NECAP
      assessment at the same time, your school/district may want to consider
      purchasing some additional calculators to allow calculator usage to mirror
      classroom practice. A four function calculator is sufficient.


Q4: Are there other devices that may be used during the mathematics test?

      A4: Yes. See the selected excerpts from the NECAP Table of
      Accommodations and related guidelines document that follow.
      Excerpts from:
      NECAP Accommodations- Guidelines and Procedures

      Accommodation C-13        Abacus use for student with severe visual
                                impairment or blindness (Mathematics – Any
                                Session)

           An abacus can be used by a student with severe visual impairment or
           blindness in any of the mathematics sessions.


      Modification F-1     Using Calculator and/or Manipulatives on Session
                           1 of the Mathematics Test

             Note that the use of any modification invalidates the session(s) in
             which it is used and no credit will be given. It is important for the
             school to take this into consideration when choosing to allow a
             Modification.

             Use of an abacus on Session 1 of the Mathematics test for students
             without severe visual impairment or blindness is considered a
             modification and must be coded as such on the Student Answer
             Booklet.


                 For more information regarding the use of accommodations
                   during the mathematics test, and to learn more about the use
                   of non-comparable modifications, see:
                   NECAP Accommodations, Guidelines and Procedures:
                   Administrator Training Guide.


Contacts

General Policy Questions:
  Tim Kurtz, Director of Assessment, 603-271-3846, 101 Pleasant Street,
  Concord, NH 03301, tkurtz@ed.state.nh.us

Accommodation Questions:
   Gaye Fedorchak, Coordinator of Alternate Assessment and Accommodations,
   603-271-7383, 101 Pleasant Street, Concord, NH 03301,
   gfedorchak@ed.state.nh.us

Mathematics Questions:
  Rich Andrusiak, Mathematics Consultant, 603-271-3844, 101 Pleasant Street,
  Concord, NH 03301, randrusiak@ed.state.nh.us

								
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