MAEIA Model Assessments

Michael Letts, Associate Professor of Art Education at Northern Michigan University produced this interview of teacher Katie Dahlman, Norway-Vulcan Area Schools, Michigan, about her experiences field testing the MAEIA model assessments during Fall 2015. She is the EK- 12th grade art teacher at Norway-Vulcan Area Schools.

The MAEIA model assessments were developed by more than 200 Michigan arts educators.

The MAEIA assessment model is different than the standardized testing with which you may be familiar. Rather than interrupt instruction, the MAEIA assessments are intended to be used in conjunction with ongoing classroom instruction. The assessments can be used in several ways:

  • as a “pre-assessment” activity to see what students know and can do;
  • as a pre-post assessment, for educators to use during instruction in order to demonstrate their effectiveness; and/or
  • as a post-instruction assessment to document what students know and can do following instruction.

Rather than the state (or anyone else) selecting assessments for you, it is up to each teacher to select the MAEIA assessments that already fit your planned instruction, and to use the assessments when and how they will be most useful to the individual teacher. It is suggested that teachers will select about 4 to 6 performance events or tasks, fit these into your instruction planned for the year, and use them in the manner most suitable to you. In other words, there is no standard number of assessments to be used, no standard time when are to be administered, and no standard use for the assessment – these are all up to you. Thus, you will find the MAEIA assessments to be both flexible and useful.

The MAEIA assessments were developed to assess fine arts performance through the use of 350 performance tasks and events.  These assessments are fully searchable, downloadable and adaptable to curriculum and instructional style.  Click on the icons below to search by standards, grade level, disciplines, etc.

MAEIA Assessment Administration Manual

MAEIA Assessment Specifications

MAEIA Video Modules

Browse MAEIA Model Assessments

  • Dance Assessments
  • Music Assessments
  • Theatre Assessments
  • Visual Arts Assessments


In 2011-12, the Michigan Youth Arts Leadership Roundtable conducted a statewide survey of arts education that provided baseline data at the school building level. That set the stage for MAEIA to create a process and a set of tools that will help districts understand excellence in arts education, and to evaluate and improve arts education programs in support of education of the whole child.

Marianne Dorais, Executive Director Michigan Youth Arts, 2013, MI

The Michigan Department of Education offers to schools the tools developed by the Michigan Arts Education Instruction and Assessment (MAEIA) project to support their pursuit of the highest quality arts education for Michigan students. As you evaluate your arts programs in the annual school improvement context, I encourage you to use the MAEIA tools to assess the status of your program, identify criteria for improvement and use model assessments in dance, music, theater and visual arts toward student and teacher growth and program improvement.

Brian Whiston, State Superintendent, Michigan Department of Education, 2015, MI