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Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research

University of Massachusetts Boston

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Full-Text Articles in Education

Adaptive Analytics: It’S About Time, Charles Dziuban, Colm Howlin, Patsy Moskal, Tammy Muhs, Connie Johnson, Rachel Griffin, Carissa Hamilton Dec 2020

Adaptive Analytics: It’S About Time, Charles Dziuban, Colm Howlin, Patsy Moskal, Tammy Muhs, Connie Johnson, Rachel Griffin, Carissa Hamilton

Current Issues in Emerging eLearning

This article describes a cooperative research partnership among a large public university, a for-profit private institution and their common adaptive learning platform provider. The focus of this work explored adaptive analytics that uses data the investigators describe as metaphorical “digital learning dust” produced by the platform as a matter of course. The information configured itself into acquired knowledge, growth, baseline status and engagement. Two complimentary models evolved. The first, in the public university, captured end-of-course data for predicting success. The second approach, in the private university, formed the basis of a dynamic real-time data analytic algorithm. In both cases the ...


From The Field: Strategies On Career Development And Employment For Students With Intellectual Disability., Daria Domin Jan 2020

From The Field: Strategies On Career Development And Employment For Students With Intellectual Disability., Daria Domin

All Institute for Community Inclusion Publications

This practical guide includes strategies that work to support students with intellectual disability (ID) who are looking for employment opportunities. The strategies shared in this publication were shared with the authors by staff and faculty at six different post-secondary programs for students with ID, and align with the Think College Standards for Inclusive Higher Education; a chart is included to show the alignment.


One Team’S Journey With Irubrics, Danan Myers, Amy Peterson, Angela Matthews, Miguel Sanchez Jul 2018

One Team’S Journey With Irubrics, Danan Myers, Amy Peterson, Angela Matthews, Miguel Sanchez

Current Issues in Emerging eLearning

This study explains the process of incorporating electronic grading rubrics into multiple sections of one Digital Literacy course at one online university. Researchers share their experience transitioning from paper rubrics to electronic iRubrics linked directly into each assignment, a process that involved evaluating existing course rubrics, revising them to align with assignments and institutional learning outcomes (ILOs), running pilot courses using the automated iRubrics tool, and training faculty on the use of these new rubrics and the iRubrics tool. The experiences suggest that using iRubrics instead of paper rubrics can significantly increase the efficiency of grading and offer quick access ...


Traversing Across Learning Environments And The Need For A Single Data Standard In Digital Learning Environments, Liam Mcnamara Jun 2018

Traversing Across Learning Environments And The Need For A Single Data Standard In Digital Learning Environments, Liam Mcnamara

Current Issues in Emerging eLearning

As Big Data becomes ever present in many industries, in education it presents a particularly interesting problem as many technologies begin to develop, data standards become variant. This raises the issue that ad-hoc data standards present discontinuity across platforms particularly in the analysis and interpretation of data collected in Personalised Learning Environments. This presents an ethical dilemma when this data becomes actionable and active in decision making regarding a learners’ progress and advancement. This article asserts that there exists a hypothetical dilemma in the predicament that ad-hoc data standards result in potentially misleading or erroneous interpretations that have longitudinal effects ...


Applying Critical Thinking Skills For Successful Pilot Projects, Shawna Flaherty May 2018

Applying Critical Thinking Skills For Successful Pilot Projects, Shawna Flaherty

Critical and Creative Thinking Capstones Collection

Piloting is an approach that can be used when introducing a desired change. It allows for smaller scale trial and leaves room for modification prior to full implementation. When applicable, this approach can be a proactive way to avoiding any potential issues or conflicts relating to the change. As a graduate student in the Critical and Creative Thinking program at UMass Boston, I have explored the concept of pilot projects for three years, planning and implementing, and revising 3 pilot projects. These pilot projects include: Meeting of the Mind’s, a space in which members of the community are invited ...


Analysis Of English Language Learner Performance On The Biology Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System: The Impact Of English Proficiency, First Language Characteristics, And Late-Entry Ell Status, Mary A. Mitchell Jun 2015

Analysis Of English Language Learner Performance On The Biology Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System: The Impact Of English Proficiency, First Language Characteristics, And Late-Entry Ell Status, Mary A. Mitchell

Graduate Doctoral Dissertations

This study analyzed English language learner (ELL) performance on the June 2012 Biology MCAS, namely on item attributes of domain, cognitive skill, and linguistic complexity. It examined the impact of English proficiency, Latinate first language, first language orthography, and late-entry ELL status. The results indicated that English proficiency was a strong predictor of performance and that ELLs at higher levels of English proficiency overwhelmingly passed. The results further indicated that English proficiency introduced a construct-irrelevant variance on the Biology MCAS and raised validity issues for using this assessment at lower levels of English proficiency. This study also found that ELLs ...


Research And Education In Parallel: Scientific Outreach Through On-Site Experiments At The Museum Of Science Boston Living Laboratory, Vivian Ciaramitaro, Hiu-Mei Chow Apr 2015

Research And Education In Parallel: Scientific Outreach Through On-Site Experiments At The Museum Of Science Boston Living Laboratory, Vivian Ciaramitaro, Hiu-Mei Chow

Office of Community Partnerships Posters

Our world is multisensory, as is our perception of it: we see lips move while we listen to what is being said, we smell food as we taste it, we touch a surface as we feel its texture as we look at. Cross-modal sensory processing, the way information from our different senses interacts and influences our conscious perceptual experience is ubiquitous in everyday life, yet, it is not well understood, compared to unimodal sensory processing, processing information from a single sensory system. One of our research goals is to standardize a set of computer-generated stimuli and procedures to study sound-shape ...


Editor's Note, Padraig O'Malley Sep 2014

Editor's Note, Padraig O'Malley

New England Journal of Public Policy

On December 3, 2013, when the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) released its Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) scores, the ranking of the United States as number 27 on the global scoreboard elicited little surprise among teachers, educational professionals, academics, and educational policymakers. The usual platitudes were trotted out—no mention that the United States’ standing was getting any worse, just which other countries were passing us by. We were stuck at a perennial average.

The results are in a sense a metaphor of the slow decline of the United State since the 1970s from a position ...


Interview With Andreas Schleicher, Padraig O'Malley, Andreas Schleicher Sep 2014

Interview With Andreas Schleicher, Padraig O'Malley, Andreas Schleicher

New England Journal of Public Policy

This interview took place on March 17, 2014, in Washington, DC, with Andreas Schleicher, Director of Education and Skills, and Special Advisor on Education Policy to the Secretary-General at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Schleicher is responsible for the Directorate of Education and Skills’ research, analysis, and publication of the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), the OECD Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC), the OECD Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS), and the development and analysis of benchmarks on the performance of education systems. The OECD reports on PISA, PIAAC, and TALIS were released between December 3 ...


Sustaining The Teaching Profession, Ronald Thorpe Sep 2014

Sustaining The Teaching Profession, Ronald Thorpe

New England Journal of Public Policy

Within the United States and across nations, there seems to be consensus that teacher quality is the most important school-based variable in determining how well a child learns. While such an observation hardly sounds like headline news, it is a milestone in the development of teaching as a profession. It suggests where investments should be made if people really are serious about student learning. It also explains why policymakers and the public should care about what it means to be an effective teacher and what it will take to create and sustain a teaching workforce defined by accomplished practice. Teachers ...


The National Commission On Education Excellence And Equity: Hypotheses About Movement Building, Christopher Edley Jr. Sep 2014

The National Commission On Education Excellence And Equity: Hypotheses About Movement Building, Christopher Edley Jr.

New England Journal of Public Policy

In 2013, the congressionally chartered national Commission on Education Equity and Excellence issued unanimous recommendations for P–12 policy changes at the federal, state, and local levels. This remarkably broad consensus, with unusual pragmatism and concreteness, is comprehensive in its scope and predominantly research based. As a clarion call and reform strategy, the commission report, For Each and Every Child, is a successor to A Nation at Risk (1983); the commission’s grand if not grandiose intention was to provide a framework for the next decade or more of nationwide policy struggle. This article, after briefly summarizing the recommendations, focuses ...


International Education Comparisons: How American Education Reform Is The New Status Quo, Randi Weingarten Sep 2014

International Education Comparisons: How American Education Reform Is The New Status Quo, Randi Weingarten

New England Journal of Public Policy

The United States participates in international studies comparing school systems across the world. Reformers have largely ignored the lessons from these studies about what works best to educate children, and a strategy of test-based accountability has become the new status quo. This article analyzes the failed policy ideas reformers keep pushing on our schools that have been shown across the globe to be unsuccessful in the areas of school choice and competition, teacher quality and evaluation, an engaging curriculum, and equity. Research examines what top performing countries do to help students succeed, as well as what works in districts across ...


The Development And Design Of The Common Core State Standards For Mathematics, Jason Zimba Sep 2014

The Development And Design Of The Common Core State Standards For Mathematics, Jason Zimba

New England Journal of Public Policy

As one of the lead writers of the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics, I begin by explaining what the standards are, what they are not, and how they were developed. Then I detail some ways in which the standards differ from previous state standards. Finally, I describe some of the developments I have seen in the implementation of the standards and the key developments I would like to see in the future.


Poverty, Educational Achievement, And The Role Of The Courts, Michael A. Rebell Sep 2014

Poverty, Educational Achievement, And The Role Of The Courts, Michael A. Rebell

New England Journal of Public Policy

The large and growing proportion of U.S. students who come from poverty backgrounds explains this country’s relatively low performance on international achievement tests. These students need a broad range of comprehensive educational services if they are to have a meaningful opportunity to succeed in school. These opportunities include not only adequate resources for basic K–12 educational services but also parent engagement, health and other services, and additional early education, after-school, and summer programs. In most states, the schools attended by students with the greatest needs tend to receive the fewest resources because of the inequitable systems most ...


Transforming Public Education: The Need For An Educational Justice Movement, Mark R. Warren Sep 2014

Transforming Public Education: The Need For An Educational Justice Movement, Mark R. Warren

New England Journal of Public Policy

Nearly fifteen years after the passage of No Child Left Behind, the failures of our educational system with regard to low-income children of color remain profound. Traditional reform efforts have sought improvements solely within the confines of the school system, failing to realize how deeply educational failure is part of and linked to broader structures of poverty and racism. A social movement that creates political and cultural change is necessary to transform the racial inequities in public education itself and to connect this transformational effort to a larger movement to combat poverty and racism. The seeds of a new educational ...


What Can Pisa Tell Us About U.S. Education Policy?, Linda Darling-Hammond Sep 2014

What Can Pisa Tell Us About U.S. Education Policy?, Linda Darling-Hammond

New England Journal of Public Policy

Despite years of attention to “reform” in the United States, overall achievement on international assessments such as PISA has not improved during the period from 2000 to 2012. Reforms focused on high-stakes testing attached to sanctions, expansions of charter schools, and a market-based approach to teaching have been unsuccessful in changing outcomes. Meanwhile, growing childhood poverty, along with increasing segregation, income inequality, and disparities in school spending, have expanded the opportunity gap. Lessons from other nations and successful states indicate that systematic government investments in high-need schools along with capacity-building that improves the knowledge and skills of educators and the ...


School Reform In Canada And Florida: A Study Of Contrast, Catherine S. Boehme Sep 2014

School Reform In Canada And Florida: A Study Of Contrast, Catherine S. Boehme

New England Journal of Public Policy

Alberta and Florida have instituted school reform initiatives over the past fifteen years in an effort to improve the quality of their schools. Alberta has focused on systemic improvement by engaging the community in educational needs assessment, raising the high standards of teacher preparation, and improving effective instructional practices through professional development. Florida’s efforts have concentrated on holding students, teachers, schools, and districts accountable for high-stakes testing results by increasing the number and rigor of required assessments and increasing the negative consequences for low achievement scores. The 2012 PISA scores reveal that Alberta’s students are maintaining their high ...


Getting To The Core And Evolving The Education Reform Movement To A System Of Continuous Improvement, Fernando M. Reimers, Eleonora Villegas-Reimers Sep 2014

Getting To The Core And Evolving The Education Reform Movement To A System Of Continuous Improvement, Fernando M. Reimers, Eleonora Villegas-Reimers

New England Journal of Public Policy

This article places the most recent study of PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) in historical perspective, reviewing the role of international comparisons in efforts to build public education systems as key institutions of democratic societies. It discusses the findings for the United States, examining differences with other participating countries. It also looks at a paradox. Despite the high priority education has received in the United States in the past two decades, the country underperformed in a number of indicators in the PISA in comparison with many other countries participating in the study. The authors explain the findings as the ...


Massachusetts Schooling Matters: Good News, Contributing Factors, Challenges, Persistent Problems, Kathleen J. Skinner, Paul Toner Sep 2014

Massachusetts Schooling Matters: Good News, Contributing Factors, Challenges, Persistent Problems, Kathleen J. Skinner, Paul Toner

New England Journal of Public Policy

Massachusetts public schools have performed at the highest levels on national and international benchmarked reading, mathematics, and science assessments. The Commonwealth’s population demographics related to educational attainment, employment, and family income coupled with factors within the control of the state, districts, or schools, such as highly qualified and unionized teachers, average school-district size, defined time on learning, universal health care coverage for all children, state funding for pre-K–12 schooling, curriculum articulation through statewide standards, and high participation in college admissions exams, have contributed to academic success. Massachusetts schools, however, still face challenges in narrowing existing achievement gaps, reducing ...


Word On The Street: Instilling A Relationship Between Art And Community, Joyce Peseroff Apr 2014

Word On The Street: Instilling A Relationship Between Art And Community, Joyce Peseroff

Office of Community Partnerships Posters

The project “Word on the Street” will be integrated into ENGL 210: Introduction to Creative Writing. Beginning as a pilot in one course section in Spring 2014, the course will partner with the Black Seed Writers’ Workshop, a group of homeless writers supported by the Cathedral Church of St. Paul’s Wednesday Lunch Program. Professor Joyce Peseroff and Master of Fine Arts graduate student Teaching Assistants (TA) will participate in the Civic Engagement Scholars Initiative (CESI) to build capacity for course redesign, implementation, assessment, and scholarship.


Higher Order Teaching: University Of Massachusetts Boston, Institute For Community Inclusion And Lowell Public Schools, Lisa Van Thiel Apr 2014

Higher Order Teaching: University Of Massachusetts Boston, Institute For Community Inclusion And Lowell Public Schools, Lisa Van Thiel

Office of Community Partnerships Posters

The Higher Order Teaching (HOT) partnership builds upon and extends the Lowell Public School’s Birth to Three Alignment grant. One of five pilot sites across the Commonwealth, the Lowell Alignment grant brings together a 15 member Leadership Alignment Team comprised of two, Level 3 & Level 4 public school principals, the District’s Early Childhood Department, and the City’s 7 center based programs, 5 family child care systems, and Head Start to build a common language around alignment, the common core, standards-based curriculum, and to set alignment goals and benchmarks. HOT addresses a widespread need throughout the City to ...


The Association Between Elementary Teacher Licensure Test Scores And Student Growth In Mathematics: An Analysis Of Massachusetts Mtel And Mcas Tests, Life Legeros Dec 2013

The Association Between Elementary Teacher Licensure Test Scores And Student Growth In Mathematics: An Analysis Of Massachusetts Mtel And Mcas Tests, Life Legeros

Graduate Doctoral Dissertations

This quasi-experimental value-added study provided evidence for the predictive validity of the Massachusetts MTEL General Curriculum Mathematics Subtest by finding an association between the licensure test results of 130 teachers and the growth of their 2640 grade 4 and 5 students. The study took advantage of a natural experiment that arose due to a policy change made by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (MADESE) in response to the initial administration of a new highly rigorous math-specific licensure subtest for elementary and special education teachers in March, 2008. The emergency amendment allowed test takers to conditionally pass the ...


The Academic Achievement Of Latino Students In Boston Public Schools, Faye Karp Apr 2012

The Academic Achievement Of Latino Students In Boston Public Schools, Faye Karp

Gastón Institute Publications

This report examines the SY2006-SY2009 MCAS ELA and Math achievement of Latino students in Boston Public Schools. The key findings of this report include:

  • Latino students now constitute the largest racial/ethnic student group in Boston Public Schools (43.0% in SY2012) and the only racial/ethnic group to grow in numbers from SY2006 to SY2009. In SY2009, Latino students had the highest rates of poverty, mobility, chronic absence, and grade retention in Boston Public Schools.
  • Latino students have some of the lowest MCAS ELA and Math pass rates in Boston Public Schools. In SY2009, White students had the highest ...


Learning From Consistently High Performing And Improving Schools For English Language Learners In Boston Public Schools, Rosann Tung, Virginia Diez, Laurie Gagnon, Miren Uriarte, Pamela Stazesky, Eileen De Los Reyes, Antonieta Bolomey Nov 2011

Learning From Consistently High Performing And Improving Schools For English Language Learners In Boston Public Schools, Rosann Tung, Virginia Diez, Laurie Gagnon, Miren Uriarte, Pamela Stazesky, Eileen De Los Reyes, Antonieta Bolomey

Gastón Institute Publications

Against a backdrop of increasing BPS ELL enrollment, district ELL leadership transitions, state and federal policies affecting ELL education, and with the knowledge that many teachers and administrators within the Boston Public Schools are expert practitioners with ELL students, we addressed the following research questions:

  • In which BPS schools were ELL students performing at a consistently high level or showing steady improvement during SY2006-SY2009?
  • What were some of the practices that these schools’ staffs credited with their success with ELL students during SY2006-SY2009?
  • Which of the practices identified by school staff were shared among the selected schools?

Through case study ...


Improving Educational Outcomes Of English Language Learners In Schools And Programs In Boston Public Schools, Miren Uriarte, Faye Karp, Laurie Gagnon, Rosann Tung, Sarah Rustan, Jie Chen, Michael Berardino, Pamela Stazesky, Eileen De Los Reyes, Antonieta Bolomey Nov 2011

Improving Educational Outcomes Of English Language Learners In Schools And Programs In Boston Public Schools, Miren Uriarte, Faye Karp, Laurie Gagnon, Rosann Tung, Sarah Rustan, Jie Chen, Michael Berardino, Pamela Stazesky, Eileen De Los Reyes, Antonieta Bolomey

Gastón Institute Publications

Using 4 years of student-level demographic, enrollment and testing and school-level characteristics, this study analyzes the enrollment and outcomes of English Language Learners (ELLs) in Boston Public School between SY2006 and SY2009 and assess the relative impact of individual and school level factors in testing outcomes of ELLs. The study reports on the improvement in ELL dropout rates and testing outcomes during the period of observation. It reports also on the outcomes of ELLs at different levels of English proficiency and finds (1) higher dropout rates and lower testing performance among low English proficiency students; (2) a minimal proportion of ...


An Exploratory Survey Of The Enrollment Decisions Of Parents And Guardians In Four Catholic Urban Elementary Schools, Sheila Lombard Kukstis Jun 2011

An Exploratory Survey Of The Enrollment Decisions Of Parents And Guardians In Four Catholic Urban Elementary Schools, Sheila Lombard Kukstis

Graduate Doctoral Dissertations

As competition from tuition-less local charter and public schools increases, urban parents and guardians have more options for educating their children. Many struggle financially yet still choose to pay tuition for their children to attend an urban Catholic school. This exploratory study looks at the reasons why these parents and guardians choose a Catholic education for their children.

Over the course of six months in 2010, 850 surveys were sent to four Catholic urban elementary schools. One hundred and ninety-six parents and guardians in four urban Boston Catholic elementary schools completed surveys and participated in two focus groups. Two of ...


Cultural Proficiency In Education: A Review Of The Literature Focused On Teachers, School Leaders, And Schools, Cady Landa Mar 2011

Cultural Proficiency In Education: A Review Of The Literature Focused On Teachers, School Leaders, And Schools, Cady Landa

Gastón Institute Publications

This literature review complements numerous studies conducted by the Gastón Institute in the last twenty years showing the significance of cultural differences for the educational outcomes of Latino and other cultural- and linguistical-minority children. The Gastón Institute and Sociedad Latina partnered to produce this review with the goal of deepening the understanding of policy makers and administrators of the benefits of culturally proficient schools for all students.

The author, Cady Landa, presents a wealth of information on the characteristics of cultural proficiency and the qualities that it calls for in teachers, students, and administrators. She has drawn from dozens of ...


The State Of Latinos And Education In Massachusetts: 2010, Billie Gastic, Melissa Colón, Andrew Flannery Aguilar Sep 2010

The State Of Latinos And Education In Massachusetts: 2010, Billie Gastic, Melissa Colón, Andrew Flannery Aguilar

Gastón Institute Publications

Schools are critical public institutions for Latino youth in the Commonwealth, who make up 15% of the public school enrollment in the state. Sadly, despite leading the nation in student achievement, Massachusetts is still leaving its Latino students behind. This is evident from several indicators of Latino students’ academic success. School attendance is a significant concern since Latino students lose an average of more than two and a half weeks of school each year due to absences. Latino students are also frequently disciplined for behavioral is- sues at school. Latinos account for 23% of the incidents that result in disciplinary ...


Educational Outcomes Of English Language Learners In Massachusetts: A Focus On Latino/A Students, Faye Karp, Miren Uriarte Sep 2010

Educational Outcomes Of English Language Learners In Massachusetts: A Focus On Latino/A Students, Faye Karp, Miren Uriarte

Gastón Institute Publications

This report analyzes trends in enrollment and outcomes for English Language Learner stu- dents (ELLs), a growing population in Massachusetts, in the post–Question 2 policy envi- ronment. Where possible, the report presents data on Latino students of Limited English Proficiency (LEP).

Few LEP students, and few of the native Spanish speakers among them, reach the highest level of English language proficiency as measured by the Massachusetts English Proficiency Assessment (MEPA).Though some improvements have been seen in terms of Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) performance and graduation rates, the rates remain low and the persistence of large gaps between ...


Improving Higher Education Through User-Inspired Research: Findings From Multi-National Needs Assessments, Joseph B. Berger Nov 2009

Improving Higher Education Through User-Inspired Research: Findings From Multi-National Needs Assessments, Joseph B. Berger

Joseph B. Berger

No abstract provided.