Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium Selects American Institutes for Research to Create an Online Test Delivery System for States

Washington, D.C. – The Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (Smarter Balanced) today announced that the American Institutes for Research (AIR) has been chosen to partner with the consortium to deliver their initial tests to millions of students in 2013 and 2014. AIR will make available an open-source testing platform to enable all states and others to deliver cutting edge tests.

Smarter Balanced, a state-led consortium, is creating an assessment system aligned to the Common Core State Standards to measure mastery of the content students will need to succeed in colleges and careers. Smarter Balanced is committed to developing tests that use technology to better measure student knowledge and to make the tests accessible to all. The Smarter Balanced tests will be delivered online and include innovative items and performance tasks that take advantage of the potential of technology.

The Smarter Balanced tests will be adaptive, meaning the difficulty of the questions will adjust to the knowledge level of the student. The test will be standards-based so each student will be assessed on the full range of the content they should be taught. Those taking the test will have access to a broad array of tools and embedded supports that will enable every student to clearly and fairly show what they know and can do.

AIR, a not-for-profit organization, is one of the nation’s leading providers of academic assessments, and has been providing accessible, standards-based statewide adaptive testing services since 2007. AIR counts among its partners three of the Consortium’s Governing States – Delaware, Hawaii and Oregon – with whom AIR collaborated to develop some of the innovations that the Consortium is now building upon. The innovations include new ways to enable a test to adapt to student performance, as well as a break through way to provide online Braille tests to improve testing for blind students.

AIR has partnered with Data Recognition Corporation, another of the nation’s most respected assessment organizations, to deliver these services.

About AIR
Established in 1946, with headquarters in Washington, D.C., the American Institutes for Research (AIR) is a nonpartisan not-for-profit organization that conducts behavioral and social science research and delivers technical assistance both domestically and internationally in education, health, and workforce productivity. For more information, visit


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