The Early Assessment Program (EAP) is a collaborative effort among three important state entities in California: California State University (CSU), California Department of Education (CDE), and California State Board of Education (SBE). The goal of this unprecedented partnership is to ensure that collegebound high-school graduates have the English and mathematics skills expected by the state university.
The EAP will allow students, their teachers, their parents, and the CSU to know exactly how well prepared the 11th-graders are for university-level work. Furthermore, it will give high school students a chance to polish their skills before enrolling in college. The EAP has three components: early testing, the opportunity for additional preparation in the 12th grade, and professional development activities for high school English and mathematics teachers.
The EAP test is embedded in the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) 11th-grade English Language Arts/Literacy and mathematics. These tests are part of California’s public school testing and accountability system and are required of all grade 11 students. CAASPP exams cover both California high school standards as well as the CSU placement standards. Specified levels of these scores indicate meeting CSU standards.
After 11th-graders take the test, they will be notified whether they have either met the CSU expectations (and are thus exempt from any additional CSU placement tests) or whether they need additional preparation in order to be successful in college-level work. Those who need extra work will have their entire senior year to prepare further.
A final component of the EAP is teacher development in English-Expository Reading and Writing Course (ERWC) and math-Strengthening Mathematics Instruction (SMI) for high school teachers.
What are the benefits of EAP?
- Students get an early signal about their preparedness for college. Those who find that they are not proficient in mathematics or English have their entire senior year to hone those skills.
- California students and families can be sure that required high school standards and tests are meaningful, have consequences, and connect to readiness for college.
- California students and families can be confident that high school standards and college entrance standards are congruent.
- Students who choose to improve their skills in the senior year may be able to bypass any remedial courses.