English language cues

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Nonverbal Dictionary


Each entry in the Nonverbal Dictionary has been researched by anthropologists, archaeologists, biologists, linguists, psychiatrists, psychologists, semioticians, and others who have studied human communication from a scientific point of view.

You can access this outstanding online resource for free via the following link.

About The Author

(Photo Credit: Doreen K. Givens)

Dr. Givens began studying body language for his Ph.D. in anthropology at the University of Washington in Seattle. He served as Anthropologist in Residence at the American Anthropological Association in Washington, D.C. from 1985-97. He taught anthropology at the University of Washington and currently teaches in the School of Professional Studies at Gonzaga University. His expertise is in nonverbal communication, anthropology, and the brain.

Givens offers seminars to lawyers, judges, social workers, salespeople, and physicians, works with local law-enforcement agencies and the FBI, and consults with the U.S. intelligence community. Givens and neuroscientist Paul D. MacLean introduced the word "isopraxism" (the reptilian principle of mimicking) into the English language, as announced by the executive editor of the American Heritage Dictionary in the Atlantic Monthly.

His ideas on nonverbal communication have been written about in Omni, Harpers, the New Yorker, U.S. News & World Report and in the New York Times, Washington Post, and Los Angeles Times.

About The Center

The Center for Nonverbal Studies (CNS) is a private, nonprofit research center located in Spokane, Washington. Underway since October 1, 1997, the Center's mission is to advance the study of human communication in all its forms apart from language. The Center's goal is to promote the scientific study of nonverbal communication , which includes body movement, gesture, facial expression, adornment and fashion, architecture, mass media, and consumer-product design.

Source: http://www.all-about-body-language.com/nonverbal-dictionary.html

Assessment Purpose & Use

Alternate ACCESS for ELLs is an assessment of English language proficiency (ELP) for students in grades 1 -12 who are classified as English language learners (ELLs) and have significant cognitive disabilities that prevent their meaningful participation in the ACCESS for ELLs assessment. The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB; 2001) requires that all students identified as ELLs be assessed annually for English language proficiency, including students who receive special education services. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA; 2004) also mandates that students with disabilities participate in state-wide and district-wide assessment programs, including alternate assessments with appropriate accommodations, when it is documented in their Individualized Education Programs (IEP). For this reason, WIDA created the Alternate ACCESS for ELLs to meet federal accountability requirements and to provide educators with a measure sensitive to English language proficiency growth of ELLs with significant cognitive disabilities.

Assessment Overview

Alternate Language Proficiency Levels

Alternate ACCESS for ELLs aligns with the WIDA Alternate English Language Proficiency levels. These levels were designed to expand upon Level P1 - Entering, by increasing the sensitivity of the measure for students who have significant cognitive disabilities. The alternate ELP levels give students a chance to demonstrate progress within Level P1.

Alternate Model Performance Indicators (AMPIs)

  • language function (e.g., indicate, match, locate),
  • example topic (e.g., text elements), and
  • form of support (e.g., sensory, graphic, interactive).

9-12 Language of Science

Level A1

Level A2

Level A3



Attend to labeled pictures related to science

Match pictures with science vocabulary words

Locate single components of data from everyday sources represented in tables

Example Alternate Assessment Activities

Teacher presents student with labeled pictures of weather conditions. Student attends to the pictures by demonstrating eye gaze, making sounds, etc.

Teacher presents student with three pictures depicting weather conditions. Student matches the pictures to the correct words (e.g., sun, cloud, snow).

Teacher presents student with weather forecast from newspaper and asks “What day will it be rainy?” Student indicates correct day.

AMPIs for Grade-Level Cluster 9 -12 in the Standard of Language of Science in the Domain of Reading.

English Language Development Standards

Test items are written from AMPIs and MPIs from four of WIDA’s ELD standards:

  • Social & Instructional Language
  • Language of Language Arts
  • Language of Mathematics
  • Language of Science
Test Section Standards Number of Tasks Range of Levels
Listening SIL, LoMA, LoSC, LoLA 9 A1-A3 and P1-P2
Reading SIL, LoMA, LoSC, LoLA 9 A1-A3 and P1-P2
Speaking Part A LoMA, LoSC 8 A1-A3 and P1-P2
Part B
Writing Part A SIL, LoSC, LoLA 10 A1-A3 and P1-P3
Part B
Part C

Language Domains

Each test form assesses the four language domains of Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing.

Grade-Level Clusters

Test forms are divided into the following grade-level clusters:

  • Grades 1-2
  • Grades 3-5
  • Grades 6-8
  • Grades 9-12

Sample Items

The Sample Items publication is intended to help Alternate ACCESS for ELLs test administrators become familiar with the new features of the assessment. Within this document, one sample item is provided for each domain (Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing) in the 3-5 grade level cluster so that test administrators can see how test items are formatted in each section.

Test Development

The Future of Alternate ACCESS for ELLs

The Alternate Model Performance Indicators are currently being revised to align with the Common Core Essential Elements and WIDA’s 2012 Amplification of the ELD Standards. Once the AMPIs are revised, the Alternate ACCESS for ELLs test forms will be modified to reflect the updated framework.

Technical Reports


Source: https://www.wida.us/assessment/alternateaccess.aspx

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