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Defining Cutpoints for Performance Levels (includes video)


When you define cutpoints for an assessment, you create performance levels into which student scores will fall. You can give the performance levels names and base them on percent correct scores. You can view performance levels on the Performance Levels Report, Standard Summary Report, or Student Response Report.

Some user roles may define cutpoints. A District Test Coordinator (DTC) can define cutpoints for all assessments in their district, including benchmarks. A School Test Coordinator (STC) can define cutpoints for any classroom assessments at their school. A teacher can define cutpoints for classroom assessments they created. 

Watch the Video: Defining the Cutpoints and Reviewing the Benefits


  • If you are a DTC defining cutpoints for a benchmark assessment, refer to the Achievement Level/Performance Level cutscores file available to you on ShareFile. It contains detailed information for the cutpoints to use on each benchmark assessment administration in your district.
  • You must define cutpoints in order to view the Performance Levels Report.

Open Assessment Analytics

To select an assessment that needs cutpoints, click the Reports drop-down menu [1] and select Assessment Analytics [2].

Open Cutpoints

To open the Manage Cutpoints page, click the Single Assessment Reports tab [1]. Locate an assessment using the filters [2]. Click the assessment's Cutpoints button [3].

Note: Learn more about filters for accessing Assessment Analytic Reports.

Filter District, School, or Class

Use the filters to set the scope for the cutpoints. Depending on your user role, you can create cutpoints for the assessment at a district, school, or classroom level using the available filters [1]. To define cutpoints for more than one class, choose one class from the Classroom drop-down menu [2]. Then after adding levels, apply the cutpoints to more than one class using the Apply to classrooms field [3]. Learn more about the Apply to classrooms field in the Selecting Classes section, below.

Add Level

To add a cutpoint level, click the Add level button.

Enter Performance Level Information

Enter performance level information as it should appear on a report. Enter a title in the Label field [1]. You may enter a number, word, or a phrase as the title such as "Needs Improvement" or "Level 1" or "1" or "2-" or "2+".

Select a color for the level by clicking the Color drop-down menu [2].

Specify a percent range for the level by entering values in the Min Level and Max Level fields [3].

Note: If you are setting cutpoints for a benchmark assessment, use the achievement/performance levels outlined in the cutscores spreadsheet accessible to you in ShareFile.

Add Another Level

Click the Add level button again and repeat the step above to add another performance level. Continue to add levels until all the scores from 0% to 100% are covered by the performance levels.

If you need to remove a level, click the Remove Level button [2].

Review Levels

Verify that scores from 0% to 100% are covered by the levels and that no ranges overlap.

Select Classes

To set cutpoints for one or more classrooms, click the Apply to classrooms drop-down menu and select one or more classes.

Note: If you define cutpoints for one classroom, all other classrooms listed in the top Classroom filter will also use those cutpoints, unless you create different cutpoints for the other classrooms.

Save Performance Levels

Click the Save Changes button.

View Standard Summary Report

View Performance Levels

Results for each performance level display in the Standard Summary Report.

View Performance Levels Report

Results for each performance level display in the Performance Levels Report.

View Student Response Report

View the overall performance level in the Student Response Report.

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