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Adult and Community Learning Services (ACLS)

FY2019 BEST Plus 2.0 Recertification Letter

January 28, 2019

Dear Program Director,

If your program uses the BEST Plus 2.0 for pre- and post-testing, please review the recertification instructions below.

All practitioners eligible for recertification whose information was provided through the online Recertification Form also received a copy of the instructions from the UMass Amherst Center for Educational Assessment (CEA). In addition, by January 31st, the CEA will send you an email with the recertification eligibility status of all practitioners listed on the Recertification Form. Once the recertification period ends, you will receive an updated email with the PASS/FAIL status of all practitioners in your program who were eligible for recertification.

As in previous years, practitioners who became initially certified in FY2019 (July 1, 2018–June 30, 2019) or earned RRR consecutively from FY2015-2017 or FY2016-2018 are exempt from recertification.

The materials needed for recertification are listed below. If your program is missing any of those materials, they must be purchased from the Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL) at as soon as possible.

Please remember that practitioners must complete the scoring activity individually and must not, under any circumstances, have access to the scoring activity answer keys that are part of the Scoring Refresher Toolkit. We recommend removing the answer keys from the Toolkit and keeping them in a separate, secure location.

BEST Plus 2.0 Recertification Instructions

To ensure scoring accuracy statewide, BEST Plus 2.0 test administrators need to be recertified by administering a minimum of 10 BEST Plus 2.0 tests within the last fiscal year, taking part in a Scoring Refresher, and successfully completing a 30-minute Scoring Activity.

Practitioners who became initially certified in FY2019 (July 1, 2018–June 30, 2019) or earned RRR consecutively from FY2015-2017 or FY2016-2018 are exempt from recertification. If you are receiving this email, you must recertify to continue administering the BEST Plus 2.0 in Fiscal Year 2020.

Scoring Refresher

When reviewing the BEST Plus 2.0 Scoring Refresher, practitioners must use the following materials:

  • A 3-ring binder entitled, BEST Plus Scoring Refresher Toolkit, with two accompanying DVDs (The Refresher DVD and the Scoring Activities DVD);
  • A white booklet entitled, BEST Plus Scoring Refresher Workbook, Test Administrator's Edition.

All programs that use the BEST Plus 2.0 should have these materials available to practitioners.

The Toolkit and Workbook must be used by an individual test administrator or by a group led by a facilitator. Participating in a group is preferred, since test administrators benefit from each other's questions and experience. If a group Scoring Refresher is done, a facilitator is required. If the Refresher is done individually, the BEST Plus 2.0 administrators need to read the Toolkit and accompanying facilitator's edition of the Workbook prior to the Refresher. The Toolkit contains helpful information and also a Workbook with extra information for the facilitator.

Please note that a BEST Plus 2.0 Recertification Q&A Webinar was conducted on January 10, 2019. To access a recording of the webinar and a transcript of the Q&A, please go to the ACLS Test Help blog and click on "Protected: BEST Plus Materials" under Recent Posts, then enter the password umass. Many details from the Scoring Refresher DVD were included in the webinar, but ACLS still highly recommends conducting a separate Scoring Refresher. Practitioners may consider watching the webinar and then taking part in a Scoring Refresher to focus on the areas that still need attention.

Scoring Activity

You will have two months to individually score a sample set of recorded responses and submit your scores online. The deadline for submitting Scoring Activity 3 is Friday, March 29, 2019.

We strongly recommend that you first score on the paper version of the Scoring Activity 3 answer sheet from the Scoring Refresher Workbook and then transfer your answers online. If you prefer to not use the paper version first, you will need access to two screens in order to watch the scoring activity while simultaneously scoring the responses online.

  • See detailed instructions for online submission in the attached document.

  • There are no exceptions for late submissions. Test administrators who miss the recertification window are not permitted to administer or score the BEST Plus 2.0 in FY2020.

  • Those who do not pass the scoring activity will be contacted by the UMass Amherst Center for Educational Assessment (CEA) about next steps (phone remediation or retraining).

  • No paper certificates will be given, but the UMass Amherst CEA will email practitioners and their Program Directors within 2–5 business days of receiving scoring activity results through the online submission system.


Practitioners will be able to see their results in each section of the BEST Plus 2.0 scoring rubric immediately. Using the PASS/FAIL key below, practitioners can determine their own PASS/FAIL recertification status.

  • R-R-R: PASS status, no remediation required
  • R-R-A in any combination: PASS Status, no remediation required
  • R-A-A in any combination: PASS status, no remediation required
  • A-A-A: FAIL Status, remediation required
  • U in any area: FAIL status, retraining required
  • Any combination of U and A without R: retraining required

(R = recertification recommended; A = acceptable but may need remediation; U = unacceptable)

With a PASS status, practitioners may continue administering the BEST Plus 2.0 test for the remainder of FY2019 and in FY2020. With a FAIL status, practitioners must wait to be contacted by the UMass Amherst CEA and go through phone remediation or retraining to be able to administer the BEST Plus 2.0 in FY2020 (they may still administer the test until the end of FY2019, but that should be avoided if possible—especially if retraining is needed).

Contact Information

For technical assistance and questions about recertification requirements, please contact the UMass Amherst Center for Educational Assessment. For assessment policy matters, please contact Dana Varzan-Parker, ACLS Assessment Specialist .


Wyvonne Stevens-Carter
Acting State Adult Education Director

Last Updated: January 28, 2019

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Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
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