Fall 2013

Measuring Student Success

CEO Message: Measuring Knowledge, Skills and Experiences

CEO Message

Today’s system of education is time-based, where the measures of success are what knowledge students possess within stated timeframes as determined by large-scale assessments that promote uniformity and standardization. What really constitutes success, and how can and should we recognize success in learning?

Today’s system of education is time-based, where the measures of success are what knowledge students possess within stated timeframes as determined by large-scale assessments that promote uniformity and standardization. What really constitutes success, and how can and should we recognize success in learning?

Delivering content through whatever means (e.g. traditional, charter or on-line) and assessing what the student knows works for some but not all kids. The reality is we are shortchanging even the kids who are successful with the single dimensional platform of learning and assessments. Comprehensive schools in the future will need to provide a curriculum commensurate with the knowledge and digital era but deliver it through a diversity of experiences and platforms. Requirements for graduation will not only include curricula expectations but also successful experiences in a range of learning platforms.

In constructing a modern education system, we must first clearly and coherently define what success looks like. There are many attributes of success that promulgate the education and business arenas including proficiency in the basic skills, college and career readiness, 21st century skills and higher order thinking skills. A modern system of education must ensure personalization of learning; a broader, deeper system of assessment; and a fundamental shift on why, what, who, when and how we measure student learning.

The perspectives on Measuring Student Success in this issue of AdvancED Source are rich and broad. Peter Hofman, Vice President for Public Policy and External Relations, and Dr. Stuart Kahl, Co-Founder, of Measured Progress begin this issue with the opportunities and challenges they see presented through Performance Assessment in their article, The Promise of Performance Assessment … and the Challenges. Dr. Pamela Cantor, Founder, President and CEO of Turnaround for Children, Inc., discusses how we must confront the barriers to learning and fortify our learning environments before we can measure student success in her article, Confronting Barriers to Learning to Help All Children Succeed. In Reinventing the Report Card, Dr. Kyle Peck explores Digital Badges and how they can replace the obsolete tools used in education today. Dr. Peck is Professor of Education, Principal Investigator for the NASA Aerospace Education Services Project and Co-Director of the Center for Online Innovation in Learning at Penn State University.

Student and game design consultant, Erik Martin, offers a gripping perspective on how we must re-assess how we assess the success of students in his piece, How World of Warcraft Saved Me and My Education. Dr. David Steiner, the Klara and Larry Silverstein Dean of the Hunter College School of Education and Founding Director of the City University of New York Institute for Education Policy at Roosevelt House, argues that we must take more seriously our expectations for learning in his article, It’s not Complicated — But it’s Seriously Difficult. Fred Bramante, President of the National Center for Competency-Based Learning and former Chairman of the New Hampshire State Board of Education, in his piece, “You Say You Want a Revolution,” makes a case for competency-based learning as a new model for education.

Brian Srikanchana, Founder and CEO of WorkReadyGrad.com, shares his perspectives on how a students’ skills and experiences should become a personal portfolio with both quantitative and qualitative measurements of educational accomplishments in Technology Bringing Professionals and Students Together. In Mission as a Measurement of Success, Sister M. Paul McCaughey, Superintendent of the Catholic Schools of the Archdiocese of Chicago, explores how even a broad mission can be used to define and measure student success. AdvancED’s own Chief Innovation Officer, Dr. Ludy van Broekhuizen explores how the attributes of a successful entry-level employee compel us to re-define learner success in, Defining Learner Success in the Digital Age.

The expertise and perspectives of all our authors will help broaden our thinking and enrich our work toward Measuring Student Success in the future. We appreciate them deepening our knowledge about what is more important — the measurement or the learning.

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