PITC PARS Training Components

Whether you are a newcomer or an experienced assessor of infant/toddler care programs, a variety of trainings are available to you that help assessors and others understand and use the PITC PARS.


This informational session provides an introduction to the PITC PARS instrument and the various aspects of program quality that it is designed to measure.

This training provides an overview of the PITC PARS instrument, geared toward assessors who will be using the instrument to measure the quality of infant/toddler group care programs. Topics covered in this training include:

• Aspects of program quality assessed by the PITC PARS
• Structure of the instrument
• Procedures for using the instrument
• Strategies for documenting evidence of program quality
• Guidance on rating and scoring

This training helps ensure that  the PITC PARS items and sub-items are scored reliably by helping assessors achieve interrater reliability with a WestEd PITC PARS Anchor Assessor.

It is highly recommended that assessors demonstrate reliability on the PITC PARS when the assessment results are to be used for research and evaluation studies, or when assessment results are to be used as part of a formal quality rating system. Organizations interested in using the PITC PARS in both the family child care and center-based care contexts can have staff complete reliability training within each care context. (Although there are only minor differences in using the PITC PARS in each context, family child care and center-based programs differ enough from each other to warrant observers achieving reliability with a WestEd PITC anchor in both contexts.)

The reliability training involves one day of classroom-style training to consider aspects of individual practice and at least three days of observations in the field with a WestEd PITC PARS Anchor Assessor. Field reliability assessments are conducted in family child care or center-based infant/toddler settings in the community. Consequently, only one or two individuals at a time can accompany an Anchor Assessor.

Achieving interrater reliability. A person is considered a reliable assessor when a minimum standard of exact agreement with the Anchor Assessor is reached for 80% or more sub-items across three successive observations. Local assessment anchors who have achieved interrater reliability with a WestEd PITC PARS Anchor Assessor are authorized to anchor PITC PARS assessments for observers at their organizations. It is recommended that local assessment anchors annually re-check interrater reliability with a WestEd PITC PARS Anchor Assessor.

To prepare for interrater reliability training with PITC PARS Anchor Assessors, individuals are encouraged to practice using the instrument on their own in the type of infant/toddler care settings where they plan to use the instrument. Practicing before the training often speeds up the process of achieving interrater reliability.

Coming soon: Schedule of upcoming training opportunities.

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