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Aurora Institute


Build Balanced Systems of Assessments, Create Space to Pilot Systems of Assessments, Create Balanced Systems of Assessments

Competency-Based Education Systems: Performance Assessment Using Proficiency Scales


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Assessments should gather evidence of student performance to provide teachers with information they can use to provide feedback to the learners on how they can improve. In an older paradigm, tests at the end of a unit were the primary measures. Today, using Proficiency Scales, teachers and students have clarity on what foundational knowledge is needed to be able to demonstrate an understanding of the learning outcomes allowing us to assess more and test less.

Learning Outcomes: 

  • Understand how Proficiency Scales are designed to make clear what foundational knowledge is needed to be successful in demonstrating understanding.
  • Become skilled at using a Proficiency Scale to build a Personal Tracking Matrix, a Traditional Test, and an observational checklist.
  • Understand how proficiency scales allow us to create numerous valid, reliable, and unidimensional assessments quickly.


  • Bill Zima, Director of Implementation, Marzano Academies | @zimaw
  • Bob Marzano, Founder, Marzano Academies | @robertjmarzano