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For many of us, the implementation of NGSS in our classroom has been both exciting and a challenge. Stanford University acknowledges the challenges that we face as teachers implementing these standards. In response, the university has created the Stanford NGSS Assessment Project (SNAP). The project works to lend support to educators, professional development providers, and assessment creators. In addition, the project researches and reports on existing assessments, as well as develops their own NGSS assessments. 

SNAP has developed NGSS Performance Expectations for physical, earth & space, and life sciences, as well as engineering. Three types of evaluations have been created to give educators a variety of depth and breadth assessment tools to use in their classroom. These assessments were not only developed by the SNAP team but were also tested on students to ensure that the intended results were being achieved. These real-world views of student performance were imperative to understand how they interact with the assessments.

  • The short-response items can be used independently in small groups. They include both selected response and constructed response questions.
  • The short performance assessments (SPAs) are created to take about a half-hour for the average student. 
  • The instructionally embedded assessments (IEAs) are more detailed and will take 3-5 days to complete.

Materials on the website include the assessments, scoring rubrics (if applicable), and sample student responses. The SNAP initiative is a dynamic, ever-evolving project with assessments being updated and developed often. For more information, go to

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