This guide is intended to support to you as you plan for implementing MAP and/or MAP for Primary Grades in your school.

With the multitude of priorities you are faced with every day, we know the importance of taking a pro-active stance toward implementing new initiatives. Over the years, we have listened carefully to our partner schools about the things they have done to have a successful first testing experience, as well as what things have helped them effectively use MAP data to meet student needs. We have organized this guide in an effort to share these ideas, and help you determine your focus based on the needs of your school.

Schools and districts start their use of MAP at various levels of readiness. This is often determined by the school/ district organizational culture and priorities. Prior to finalizing your school-level plans, be sure to check with your district leadership so that planning and communications will be coordinated.

This guide includes a self-assessment and planning template to help you and your school leadership team prepare in four areas:

  1. Introducing MAP: What is MAP? Why are we using it?

  2. Roles/Responsibilities: Who has responsibilities before, during, and after the first testing season? Which tasks

    will be accomplished now; which are ongoing?

  3. Calendar/Schedule: When and where will testing occur? What other important MAP related activities need to be included on the calendar?

  4. Ongoing Use of Data: After testing, what happens related to using and sharing the data throughout the year.

We have devoted a section of this guide to each of the four areas above to assist you in creating your plan. In each

section you will find the following sub-sections:

  1. Importance: Brief overview of why this area is important to ensure a successful implementation.

  2. Readiness Indicators: Basic guidelines for criteria that you can use to gauge the readiness of your staff in each area.

  3. Planning Ideas: Suggestions to consider as you support your staff to meet the readiness indicators. These are meant as a springboard for you and your team as you customize the learning experiences that will engage your staff as they prepare.

D. Resources: Materials and resources to assist you in preparing your staff. 

How to use this guide:

On the following pages you will find a table with planning questions for each of the four areas listed above. This table is both a needs-assessment and a planning template.

  1. Needs-Assessment: Determine which preparation areas you have already covered, and which areas need to be planned for and/or developed. Completing this checklist will help you identify the parts of this guide that apply directly to your needs as you plan your MAP implementation.

    There are three possible responses for each question. Your response will help you know where to start and how deeply to explore each section to create your implementation plan.

    • ..  No: This has not been addressed. These items may become your first priorities. The corresponding section for each will help you think about when and how you will address the topic.

    • ..  Not sure: This may have been addressed, but I need to make sure. The corresponding sections for these topics will provide information and ideas to help you determine whether this has been fully addressed.

    • ..  Yes: This has been addressed. These sections could be reviewed. Even though an area has been addressed, the information in the section may provide you with additional insights or ideas.

  2. Planning Template: As you review each section of the guide, use the planning columns in the table to record your thoughts on how you will address each question. You will see that some items will be important to address right away, some can wait until a few weeks before testing and others can happen throughout the year, when you and your staff are ready for them. This will help you prioritize your time appropriately as you create your plan for the year.

Note: Each section has an optional row to record notes or other planning needs allowing you to keep all of your plans in one place.

Section 1: Introducing MAP (What and why?)

A. Importance

As you and your staff begin your implementation, it is important to start with a shared understanding among all stakeholders—students, parents, staff—of the purpose of MAP.

Some leaders already have a very clear idea of specifically how MAP will be used in their school before it is introduced to staff. Others have the general purpose in mind but want to engage staff once they have some data to use. Regardless of where you are, there are some basics to consider that are important to student and teacher engagement.

Student engagement is critical to ensure that the data you get is a good representation of students’ efforts to communicate what they know. For the first testing experience, many teachers report a high level of student engagement. They often attribute this to the fact that it is new, it is done on a computer, it is the beginning of a school year, etc. However, we also know that over time that engagement can quickly fade if students don’t see how the results are being used to impact what they are learning. We will discuss this more in Section 4: Ongoing use of Data.

Teacher engagement is also critical. Your first administration is much more successful when teachers have an understanding of the basic characteristics of the MAP assessment and its purpose. Teachers can then better prepare students.

B. Readiness Indicators:

  1. Prior to giving the first MAP/MPG assessment, teachers explain to their students:

    • ..  What MAP is and what it measures, using a common vocabulary.

    • ..  How to interact with the assessment.

    • ..  How the results will be used.

  2. There is a consistent message communicated to students by all staff members about the importance of the assessment and doing their best.

  3. Parents have been provided with basic information about MAP—when it will take place, what the results will show, how the data will be used, and how they can support their children.

  4. Community and/or other key stakeholders are provided with similar information, as it applies to them. 


C. Possible Planning Ideas:

All Staff

In the MAP Administration: Overview, participants learn some general characteristics of the MAP Assessment, are guided to take notes about MAP using a note-catcher, and complete an activity to articulate what they have learned. You might do one or more of the following:

  • ..  Watch the MAP Welcome video and MAP Introduction video at a staff meeting (total time about 8 minutes) and discuss as a group the characteristics of MAP. Come to consensus on a general message about MAP that everyone is comfortable sharing with stakeholders.

  • ..  Have staff bring their completed activity to a staff meeting to share. Have a recorder keep track of the common themes that arise. Discuss the themes in small groups and construct a school-wide message about MAP to share with stakeholders.

  • ..  Share information at a staff meeting about how MAP complements the other assessments that you use and how MAP data will be used within your current system. Let them know that once you have completed your first testing window and have had a chance to look at the data, you will be enlisting their support and ideas for the most effective uses for MAP data within your current system.


    During the learning for the Instructor or MPG Instructor role as a part of MAP Administration, teachers completed tasks associated with using data and preparing students. Based on that learning, you might do one or more of the following:

  • ..  Meet with individuals or grade levels to discuss their student presentations. Discuss how teachers will help their students know how to interact with the test. Help them plan when, where, and how they will give their presentations to students and think about when to engage students with the Test Warm-up activity.

  • ..  Have grade-level teams present the highlights of their student presentations at a staff meeting. This can help all staff to get ideas from their colleagues and ensure that everyone is on the same page concerning communication and preparation of students.

  • ..  Ask teachers to share the ideas they generated in the MAP or MPG Scenario Activity, completed as a part of their online learning, for ways they intend to start using the data. Determine which ideas will be communicated to students.

  • ..  Allow time for grade-level teams to work through the MAP or MPG Scenario Activity together. This activity helps them think about how they might want to use the data after testing. In working through this as a team, teachers collaborate to generate ideas on how they might use the data.

    MPG Teachers

    In addition to the activities above, primary teachers, who complete the MPG Instructor role, will learn about the three components of MPG. They will also work through an activity to help them think about how they might use the various components to give them the data that will be the most helpful for instructional purposes. Based on that learning, you might do the following:

.. Meet with your primary grade teachers to discuss what they learned about the components of MPG and come to consensus on which assessments will be used. 


As you think about what to tell parents and other stakeholders about MAP, you might do one or more of the following:

  • ..  Send information about MAP in a weekly/monthly newsletter.

  • ..  Personalize the Sample Letter – First Season for your school to send home with students.

  • ..  Share a student presentation at a parent meeting. It will allow parents to hear the same message that students heard.

  • ..  Show the MAP Introduction video at a parent meeting to introduce MAP. Share the plans that your school has to use the data. Discuss ways that parents can help by talking to their children about doing their best, and explain what reports they can expect to see at conferences.

  • ..  Ask teachers to assign homework, after the student presentation, asking students to share information with their parents. Any lingering parent questions could be sent back to school for further clarification.

    D: Resources That Can Help

  • ..  For all staff to create a shared basic understanding of MAP and a common message about MAP: . Welcome to MAP video (2 minutes) – welcome staff to MAP
    . MAP Introduction tutorial (3 minutes) – share general information about MAP
    . MAP Sample Test (5 minutes) – experience the test

  • ..  For Instructors to use to prepare students (to be used before first administration):

    • .  Engaging Students webcast (45 minutes) – gain ideas about how to create high student engagement in

      the testing experience

    • .  Student Introduction to MAP Testing – set the tone and provide reminders before each testing session

    • .  MAP Test Warm-up (5 minutes) – practice interacting with MAP

    • .  MAP for Primary Grades Test Warm-up (5 minutes) – practice interacting with MPG

  • ..  For Parent communication:
    . Parent Resources in the Educator Help Center

    • -  Parent Toolkit

    • -  Sample Letters (English and Spanish)

      Section 2: Roles and Responsibilities (Who and how?)

      A. Importance:

      Once your staff is aware that you will be using MAP, they may start to ask questions, like: “What is my role? What do I need to do to be ready?” Planning for this and communicating those plans is important. They need to know how to prepare and who to go to with questions. There are a number of tasks to be accomplished in order for MAP testing to go smoothly. NWEA has provided you with a MAP Implementation Timeline and a Roles and Responsibilities Quick Reference which can help you see what these tasks are.

      A major decision is to determine who will proctor MAP. You will need to decide if teachers will be asked to serve as the proctor for their class, or whether you will assign and train several lead proctors to take on the test set-up and other major proctor responsibilities. NWEA will provide you with a Typical Testing Scenario for Proctor-Instructor Teams to help you understand these roles. Web-Based MAP was designed to allow teachers to proctor their own classes, and many schools choose to have teachers serve as both instructor and proctor. Others choose to assign a few key people in the building to serve as proctors, and require teachers to be present during testing and help with the proctoring responsibilities. Things to consider as you make this important decision:

      1. Time to Prepare:

      a. Do teachers have the time to complete both online trainings—Instructor and Proctor—prior to the testing window? If not, it might be more efficient to divide these responsibilities.

      1. Readiness of Staff:

        1. Are teachers involved in several new initiatives? If so, it might make sense to allow teachers to focus on learning about the assessment and preparing students while others learn about setting up testing sessions and proctoring.

        2. Are teachers fairly comfortable and proficient with technology? If so, learning to proctor will not be difficult, and some teachers even prefer to set up and proctor their own testing sessions.

      2. Availability of Staff:

      a. Do you have several people who have more flexibility in their daily schedules who could take on the responsibility of being lead proctors?

      If you do decide that teachers will fill both the Instructor role and the Proctor role, consider these additional supports:

      • ..  Have a designated technology person, who also completes the proctor training, on call during testing so teachers have help if they need it.

      • ..  Have a second person in the testing room during testing to assist the teacher with students who need help, or when technology issues arise.

        It is critical that roles are assigned right away so that all staff can engage in the online training that they will need in order to know how to accomplish the responsibilities related to their role.

        Whatever you decide, you can always revise your plan for the next testing season after you have feedback from staff and you are more familiar with the process. 

      B. Readiness Indicators:

      1. All implementation tasks have been assigned.

      2. All staff members know their roles and responsibilities.

      3. All staff members have a plan to learn what they need to know in order to carry out their responsibilities.

      4. All staff members know who is in each role and where to go with questions or to get help related to that role.

      5. There is a plan for sustainability of roles and processes beyond the first testing season.

      C. Possible Planning Ideas:

      As soon as possible:

      • ..  Review the Roles and Responsibilities Quick Reference and MAP Implementation Timeline to be sure you know who is assigned to each role and what their responsibilities are. Share this information with staff as soon as possible so they know what their roles are and can start to plan how to accomplish their responsibilities.

      • ..  Review the Typical Testing Scenario for Proctor-Instructor Teams to help you decide whether teachers will proctor their own tests or if you will assign the role of lead proctor to other staff. (See information about proctoring above.)

      • ..  Review the Implementation Timeline and work backwards from the opening of the testing window, allowing plenty of time for staff to complete their assigned learning. Make sure that everyone knows how to access the online trainings that they need and by what date these need to be completed. This information is found in the MAP Administration Course Outline.

      • ..  Meet with staff assigned to each role to review their plans for readiness.

      • ..  Schedule a meeting for teachers and proctors. Have them review the Typical Testing Scenario for

        Proctor-Instructor Teams and discuss plans for a consistent testing experience.

      • ..  Plan a meeting with teachers to discuss their plan for presenting information to students about MAP. Note: Teachers completed an activity to prepare a presentation for students as part of their Instructor or MPG Instructor Learning Plan.

        After testing, you might do one or more of the following:

      • ..  Discuss the testing experience at a staff meeting. Get feedback from staff to find out what went well and what didn’t. Brainstorm solutions to problems or issues that were noted. As solutions are generated, assign them to a role and create a Roles and Responsibilities Checklist, personalized for your school. Use this new checklist prior to your next testing season and remind people of any new responsibilities they may have.

      • ..  Meet with your leadership team to review the process of preparing everyone for MAP testing. Create a plan that addresses the following:

        • .  How will we prepare any new staff (Instructors/Proctors) who may join this year? What NWEA tools and resources will we use? How might existing staff be able to help?

        • .  How will we prepare new staff (Instructors/Proctors) at the beginning of next year? What NWEA tools and resources will we use? How might existing staff be able to help?

        • .  Who will keep track of training new staff and ensuring that we provide ongoing training/communication for existing staff in the event of changes in the MAP system?

          Section 3: Calendar/Schedule (When and where?)

          A. Importance

          As your staff members begin to work through the MAP Administration Course for their role, they will begin planning so they can accomplish their responsibilities. This will require that they know when testing will occur so they can ensure that their preparation tasks are complete. Share what you know about the schedule when you introduce MAP and what details you still have to work out.

          Your Administrator Learning Plan will provide you with resources to help you plan how you will set up your schedule and what are considered best practices in scheduling. Once your schedule is created, it is helpful to have staff review it before it is finalized as they may see things that you missed.

          It is also important to include time on the schedule specifically designated for staff to continue their learning about MAP data and how to use it to impact their instruction. Having this indicator in place communicates the value of the data.

          B. Readiness Indicators:

          1. We have determined the right place for testing to take place based on our technology set-up.

          2. We have created a school-wide testing schedule for our first testing season that accomplishes the following:

            1. Supports the guidelines in Scheduling Best Practices.

            2. Designates time/place to test students with special accommodations.

            3. Designates time/place for make-up tests to be given within the testing window.

          3. Our school calendar includes dates for teams to work with the data and learn from each other.

          4. Our testing schedule and calendar has been communicated appropriately to all stakeholders.

          C. Possible Planning Ideas:

          When creating the testing schedule, you might:

          • ..  Review the Scheduling Best Practices and the sample schedules documents to give you the basic guidelines for creating a school-wide testing schedule.

          • ..  Schedule a meeting, as soon as possible, with your technology coordinator to review your technology set-up. Together you can determine where testing will occur, and how many testing sessions can happen throughout your building at one time. This information will be critical for you to begin scheduling classes into available time slots.

          • ..  Meet with proctors to share the information you received about the technology set-up and share the sample schedules. Provide blank schedules with available time slots which they can use to create a schedule that will work best for them. Provide them with the Scheduling Best Practices document and ask them to review their draft schedule to see that it supports the guidelines before submitting it to you for review.

          • ..  Present your draft schedule to all staff to review and ask them for feedback before publishing the final version. This helps to create a shared sense of ownership among your staff; it will lessen the likelihood of last minute testing conflicts.

            • Arrange for classroom teachers or proctors to meet with special education staff to determine which students from each class will need accommodations for MAP testing. Ensure there is time allowed and space available for accommodations that impact your schedule. It may require that all or some of your special education staff are trained in proctoring MAP assessments.

            • ..  Develop a system for recording which students are absent or don’t complete a test during their class time. Schedule make-up sessions as soon as possible. Some schools plan at least one open time slot with a proctor each week during their testing window for make-ups, re-testing, or completing tests. Many schools also leave a day or two at the end of the testing window to allow for “wiggle room” in case of any unforeseen circumstances.

            • ..  Enlist teachers to share information with parents about when their child will be testing. Request that parents ensure that children are at school on time, have had a good night’s sleep, and have had a good breakfast on the testing days.

              For general calendaring, you might:

            • ..  Contact your district’s Assessment Coordinator and find out when they have scheduled the Applying Reports workshop and what the plan is to involve any staff from your school. This is a good opportunity to get some additional training for your staff on interpreting and applying MAP data.

            • ..  Schedule some time in preparation for that workshop for teachers to access reports and do some basic data review. You will find some possible ideas for these sessions in Section 4 of this guide.

            • ..  Schedule some time to meet with teachers once they have had a chance to look at their data to see what specific questions they have. These questions could be shared with your Assessment Coordinator to help inform their decisions about additional professional development needs.

              For parent communication, you might:

            • ..  Personalize the Sample Letter – First Season template to send home.

            • ..  Put testing dates in parent newsletter.

            • ..  Personalize the Sample Letter – Second Season and Beyond template for your school and send as a reminder

              before each testing season. 

             Section 4: Ongoing Use of Data (What’s next?)

            A. Importance

            One of the most important things that you, as instructional leader, can plan for is the ongoing use of MAP data.

            After your first testing season, your staff will still have a lot to learn about how to read and interpret MAP reports in a way that will allow them to be useful instructional tools. Successful schools keep this in mind as they create scaffolded plans for professional development and collaboration opportunities that allow teachers to begin using the data.

            In the MAP Administration Course your staff will learn some of the basics about interpreting MAP data and will have the opportunity to practice using some sample data to answer questions that will help inform instruction. You’ll find ideas in this section to help your staff make use of this basic learning to start looking at and using data right after testing.

            Consider the structures and processes you already have in place for your teachers to work with data. How can you integrate the use of MAP data into those structures? This can go a long way in helping your staff see how this data complements existing forms of data.

            B. Readiness Indicators:

            1. Teachers:

            .. Can access their MAP reports.

            .. Have identified two or three ideas about how they will start to use MAP data.

            .. Have a plan for looking at their data and doing some basic analysis after testing.

            2. There is a plan in place to communicate results to students, parents, and other stakeholders.

            C. Possible Planning Ideas:

            To build on existing team structures, you might:

            • ..  Have each team spend some time discussing what they want to do with MAP data and creating a plan for an ongoing review of data. Have them share these so you are familiar with their plans and can offer any support they might need.

            • ..  Collaborate with all teams to discuss what they will do with their first round of data. Schedule some whole staff sharing sessions where teams can report their findings and look for school-wide patterns or trends that might be areas for focus.

            • ..  Meet with grade-level or content teams to establish regular dates/times that they will meet to look at data (including but not necessarily limited to MAP data), discuss student needs, share instructional strategies, and get feedback and support from their team members. 


      To focus team collaboration, you might do one or more of the following:

      • ..  Request that teachers access their reports. Remind them that they can review how to access their reports by going to “What I Need to Know – Chapter 3: Investigate a Class” in What Every Teacher Needs to Know about MAP.

      • ..  Have a teacher work session for those who need help accessing and printing their reports.

      • ..  Suggest that teachers work in their grade level teams to analyze their Class Report and Class Breakdown Report for each subject using techniques from the Scenario Activity in the Instructor or MPG Instructor Course. For each subject have them generate a chart of two or three observations about their data for each subject, questions they have about their data, and ideas about how they will address what they found. Plan a staff meeting where all grade level teams share their charts with others. As a staff, look for any school-wide patterns or trends and collaborate as a staff to answer the questions that each grade level generated.

      • ..  Schedule time for teachers to meet in grade level teams to investigate their Class Report. Using their own reports have them answer the questions in the “What I Need to Know - Chapter 3: Investigate a Class” section from the course What Every Teacher Needs to Know About MAP.

      • ..  Meet with your leadership team to decide who should receive communication about results and plans to use the data. Use the MAP Reports Summary and/or the Web-Based MAP Reports Portfolio to help you decide what reports might be appropriate for a given audience.

        For communicating with parents, you might do one or more of the following:

      • ..  Collaborate with staff about which report will be the best one to share with parents. Develop a plan to include that report during parent teacher conferences. (Use the MAP Reports Summary for a list of reports and their uses and the Web-Based MAP Reports Portfolio to view sample reports.) Have them bring a copy of the report to a staff work session where they can practice having conversations with parents to ensure the use of a common vocabulary while highlighting student success and areas of need. Having a school-wide plan for sharing data will ensure that all parents are aware of MAP, understand how to interpret the scores, and have the chance to ask questions, if needed. It will also ensure that all parents are hearing a consistent message and are being given similar access to the data.

      • ..  Share school-wide results of MAP at a parent meeting along with examples of what teacher teams are doing to address student needs based on the results.