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The Assessment Metadata interchange describes metadata about assessments, including the definitions of the assessment, the learning objectives and learning standards tested by the assessment, and the assessment items making up the assessment. This interchange is closely related to the companion Student Assessment interchange. This interchange describes the structure of a test while the Student Assessment interchange is used to exchange students’ test results.

This interchange schema supports the exchange of metadata for the following types of assessments:

  • Single-level assessment, reporting an overall score (e.g., as in an SAT test where a single score is reported for each test).
  • Two-level item assessment, reporting an overall score and a score for each assessment item (e.g., a classroom test reports the total score and individual student results for each question).
  • Two-level objective assessment, reporting an overall score and a score for each learning objective (e.g., a standardized test reports the total score and also individual student results for each learning objective).
  • Three-level assessment, reporting an overall score, a score for sections that test specific learning objectives, and a score for each assessment item (e.g., a benchmark assessment may report a total raw score, a score per objective, and individual results for each question which are tied to learning standards).

Like all standard Ed-Fi interchanges, this schema references the Ed-Fi Core XSD and can be extended using the Ed-Fi Extensions Framework. See the Ed-Fi Data Standard: Developers' Guide for more information.

Use Cases

The Assessment Metadata interchange can be used to:

  1. Exchange metadata for standardized state or local assessment(s).
  2. Exchange metadata for classroom or benchmark assessment(s).

Model Details

The following figure shows a logical view of the Assessment Metadata Interchange schema:



The following table describes the primary entities of which the Assessment Metadata interchange is composed. 


This entity represents a logical grouping or association of assessments that share a common purpose, heritage or content standard. There may be hierarchies of Assessment Families. Characteristics (e.g., Academic Subject) specified for AssessmentFamilies, by convention, are inherited by the Assessments associated with the AssessmentFamily.

AssessmentThis entity represents a tool, instrument, process or exhibition composed of a systematic sampling of behavior for measuring a student's competence, knowledge, skills, or behavior. An assessment can be used to measure differences in individuals or groups and changes in performance from one occasion to the next.
ObjectiveAssessmentThis entity represents subtests that assess specific learning objectives.
AssessmentItemThis entity represents one of many single measures that make up an assessment.
LearningObjectiveThis entity represents identified learning objectives for courses in specific grades.
LearningStandardThis entity is a sub-element of a learning objective consisting of a precise statement of the expectation of a student's proficiency.

Extended References

This interchange includes the following Extended References.

Extended Reference NameDescription
EducationOrganizationReferenceOptional. Relates the entity mandating the use of the content standard.
SectionReferenceOptional. Relates the section(s) to which the assessment is associated.
ProgramReferenceOptional. Relates the program(s) to which the assessment is associated

Descriptor Dependencies

This interchange references the following Ed-Fi Descriptors, thus requiring them to have been defined using the Descriptors interchange prior to this interchange. For more information on the Ed-Fi Descriptor Pattern, see the Ed-Fi Data Standard - Developers' Guide.

Descriptor NameDescription
AcademicSubjectDescriptorRequired. This descriptor holds the description of the content or subject area (e.g., arts, mathematics, reading, stenography, foreign language) of an assessment.


Optional. The category of an assessment based on format and content. For example:

Achievement test
Advanced placement test
Alternate assessment/grade-level standards
Attitudinal test
Cognitive and perceptual skills test

AssessmentIdentificationSystemDescriptorRequired. A coding scheme that is used for identification and record-keeping purposes by schools, social services, or other agencies to refer to an assessment.

Optional. This descriptor holds the period or window in which an assessment is supposed to be administered (e.g., Beginning of Year, Middle of Year, End of Year).

GradeLevelDescriptorRequired. This descriptor defines the set of grade levels.
LanguageDescriptorOptional. This descriptor defines the set of languages spoken or written.
PerformanceLevelDescriptorOptional. This descriptor defines various levels or thresholds for performance on the assessment.

The following link is a ZIP archive containing the XSD for the Assessment Metadata Interchange v2.0 along with the Ed-Fi Core XSD and Sample XML Data Files:

A ZIP archive containing all v2.0 Ed-Fi Standard Interchange Schema can be found in the Download Directory.


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