Assessment & Accountability


Technical assessments are used as summative assessments in CTE programs of study. Technical assessments are considered end of program assessments not to be confused with end of course exams. The New York State Education Department has established criteria for technical assessments. Technical assessments must be nationally recognized and based on industry standards, psychometrically validated, and secure. Technical assessments must be composed of three parts. The written, student demonstration, and student project (locally developed project/portfolio). The technical assessment should not be proctored or scored by the CTE teacher of the program, with the exception of those practical assessments where state policies are in place such as in health careers programs. The NYSED does not endorse or approve technical assessments and approves a program based on its integrity and fidelity to the Regents policy for the approval process.

Yes, the third part of the technical assessment is a student project. The student project may be a school based project or portfolio. The third part of the technical assessment may be developed with support from your industry and postsecondary partners.

Lessons learned:

  • The planning and development of the third part of the technical assessment is an opportunity to bring students together with industry partners.
  • Industry partners may be integral in the review of student portfolios and/or may serve as judges or evaluators of student projects.
  • The technical assessment may be administered at the conclusion of the program though parts of the assessment may be administered throughout a student’s experience in the program.
  • Schools are required to offer the technical assessment to all program students.
  • Appropriate testing modifications should be provided in compliance with existing laws related to the administration of technical assessments for students with disabilities.

Presently, exams are used for different purposes, to serve as an end of program technical assessment, to serve as an assessment connected to teacher evaluations, and/or to serve as a Multiple Pathways to Graduation (4+1) Career Pathway exam.

The following testing providers offer assessments across multiple career sector areas:

NYSED Assessment Lists (4+1 and Teacher/Principal evaluations)

Lessons learned:

  • Making decisions regarding technical assessments at times may become a challenge. While there are numerous assessments available not all assessments are created equal. School leaders must take into consideration a host of factors such as the value of the industry credential for the students’ future employability, the cost of the assessment, and whether or not there are other viable options for the program’s approval.
  • Many school leaders build in stackable credentials so that students will graduate college and career ready with viable industry certifications as well as exams to qualify for the CTE Pathway to graduation and to earn the CTE technical endorsement.

Unfortunately, there is not one list of technical assessments recognized by New York State.

The New York State Education Department does not endorse assessments and reviews programs based on their integrity and fidelity to the program approval process guidelines and therefore

For a list of technical assessments used by NYSED approved CTE programs please visit the NYCDOE CTE resource guide.

There are currently over 80 CTE Pathway assessments available for use by CTE-approved programs. While not every career pathway is covered, schools may submit assessments for consideration. The NYSED is reviewing assessments on a rolling basis and releases updates annually.

The New York State Education Department has developed an ongoing review process where schools may submit assessments to be evaluated and considered for use as CTE Pathway Assessments to be used as a 4+1 exam.

NYSED: Multiple Pathways

Staff should make decisions with the support of industry and postsecondary partners. While not all exams and industry credentials may be eligible for use as end of program technical assessments students may benefit from earning industry credentials. Often these credentials assist students in gaining internship experiences and entry level employment beyond high school.

In situations where no nationally recognized assessment exists a district-approved consortium of local and state representatives (including business and industry partners) may develop an exam. Due to the need for exams to go through a psychometric evaluation, this process can be both costly and time-consuming. Testing vendors require exams to be piloted for a period of a year which may further delay a program’s approval.

Lessons Learned:

  • Schools that have undertaken this work with partners have frequently found that a third party (test producer) is required to ensure the assessment can be psychometrically validated, administered and scored. The cost of this work and the time involved is prohibitive and may take between 2-3 years to implement.
  • It is important to note that a consortium approach does not guarantee that industry or postsecondary institutions will recognize the assessment that has been created. All program stakeholders should consider the value of the assessment and its potential to assist students in their transition to postsecondary programs, advanced training and/or entry level work.


New York State collects CTE data from all districts. As part of this federal mandate all CTE programs are required to maintain student, program and school level data on behalf of their programs.

  • Program type
  • CTE student enrollment
  • CTE student enrollment for students receiving special education services
  • Work-based learning – student participation in the different types of experiences, work hours, whether or not experiences will count toward the CDOS Pathway option
  • Technical assessment performance (numberof students who took and passed the exam)

Programs applying for re-approval should maintain the above data and the following:

  • Number of students who completed the coursework since the program was first approved during each year of the approval period
  • Total number of students who completed coursework and received special education services during each year of the approval period
  • Number of students who completed the technical assessment
  • Number of students who passed the technical assessment (all 3 parts)
  • Number of students who received the technical endorsement
  • Number of students receiving industry credentials
  • Postsecondary placement of students after graduation

The New York City Department of Education is required to maintain CTE school and program level data in compliance with City Council Local Law 174. Schools must be aware that significant program modifications such as phase outs and closures must be reported to the CTE Central Team. Schools within the NYCDOE CTE portfolio who are considering the launch of new programs must formally apply to open new programs and/or to transition existing programs. Significant program changes may impact program funding eligibility.

PDF iconCity Council Local Law 174

Programs must be NYSED approved in order to issue the technical endorsement.

  • Completion of the minimum 44 credits required for graduation
  • Passing grades on regents exams or approved alternatives
  • Passing scores on all three parts of the technical assessment
  • Completion of work-based learning experiences provided by the approved program
  • Completion of a work-skills employability profile