Papers

Changing Targets of Assessment in Education

The Possible Relationships Between Human Behavior, Human Performance, and Their Contexts
Authors: Edmund W. Gordon and Emily B. Campbell
Abstract: This essay explores how context affects human behavior, performance and the assessments of behavior and performance. The authors argue for a form of assessment that is capable of accounting for the contexts in which individuals exist. View this paper

Education: Constraints and Possibilities in Imagining New Ways to Assess Rights, Duties and Privileges
Author: Hervé Varenne
Abstract: This essay explores the relationships between the granting of political privilege, United States public schools, and the contemporary uses of assessment. The essay then imagines how a set of new institutions that challenge these dynamics may look and feel. View this paper

Toward a Culture of Educational Assessment in Daily Life
Authors: Carlos A. Torre and Michael R. Sampson
Abstract: This essay makes the case for future cultural practices through which lay persons, as well as educators, enjoy reasonably sophisticated understandings of educational assessment data and processes. The authors outline their best estimates of where education is going, where it needs to go, and, therefore, what may be needed from educational self-assessment during the 21st century. View this paper

Toward the Measurement of Human Agency and the Disposition to Express It
Authors: Ana Mari Cauce and Edmund W. Gordon
Abstract: This paper attempts to bring together multiple bodies of knowledge in developing a multidimensional view of human agency, with a focus on those factors that allow for and facilitate the development and display of human agency. The authors do so with an eye toward the development of ways to assess, facilitate, and foster human agency through strategies that are most relevant to academic achievement and the advancement of intellective capacities. View this paper

Test-Based Accountability
Author: Robert L. Linn
Abstract: This essay explores how test-based accountability can increase student achievement and equity in performance among racial-ethnic subpopulations, students who are poor and their more affluent peers. The author expands on the history of test-based accountability and the prospects for its future. View this paper

Variety and Drift in the Functions and Purposes of Assessment in K–12 Education
Author: Andrew Ho
Abstract: This essay reviews recent frameworks that differentiate among purposes of educational assessments, particularly purposes of large-scale, standardized assessments and reflects on the forces that shape the purposes of any particular assessment over time. The author uses this discussion to identify migratory patterns for modern assessment programs as they expand across purposes. View this paper

Testing Policy in the United States: A Historical Perspective
Author: Carl Kaestle
Abstract: This essay provides an overview of the history of testing policy in the United States. The author focuses on policy issues in order to allow the reader to reflect upon how current-testing practices came to be. View this paper