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Support Materials for CCA Version 4.0—Reading

Draft – February 2006

Introduction to Depth of Knowledge (DOK) - Based on Norman Webb’s Model

(Karin Hess, Center for Assessment/NCIEA, 2005)

According to Norman L. Webb (“Depth of Knowledge Levels for Four Content Areas,” March 28, 2002), interpreting and assigning depth of knowledge levels to both objectives within standards and assessment items is an essential requirement of alignment analysis.

Four Depth of Knowledge (DOK) levels were developed by Norman Webb as an alignment method to examine the consistency between the cognitive demands of standards and the cognitive demands of assessments The DOK reading levels discussed below are based on Valencia and Wixson (2000, pp.909-935).  

Depth of Knowledge (DOK) Levels for Reading

Recall or Reproduction—Depth of Knowledge (DOK) Level 1

Recall or Reproduction asks students to receive or recite facts or to use simple skills or abilities.  Reading that does not include analysis of the text, as well as basic comprehension of a text, is included.  Items require only a shallow understanding of the text presented and often consist of verbatim recall from text, slight paraphrasing of specific details from the text, or simple understanding of a single word or phrase.

Some examples that represent, but do not constitute all of, Level 1 performance are:

Identify essential information needed to accomplish a task.

Follow the sequence of information from a passage.

Locate key ideas or information in a passage.

Skills and Concepts/Basic Reasoning—Depth of Knowledge (DOK) Level 2

This includes the engagement of some mental processing beyond recalling or reproducing a response; it requires both comprehension and subsequent processing of text or portions of text.  Inter-sentence analysis of inference is required.  Some important concepts are covered, but not in a complex way.  Standards and items at this level may include words such as summarize, interpret, infer, classify, organize, collect, display, compare, and determine whether fact or opinion.  Literal main ideas are stressed.  A Level 2 assessment item may require students to apply skills and concepts that are covered in Level 1.  However, items require closer understanding of the text, possibly through the item’s paraphrasing of both the question and the answer.

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