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2006Research Conference | June 15–16

This conference highlighted the work of invited speakers, independent researchers who have received grant funds from the Institute of Education Sciences, and trainees supported through predoctoral training grants and postdoctoral fellowships. The presentations are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the U.S. Department of Education or the Institute of Education Sciences.
Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill
400 New Jersey Avenue, N.W.
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Investigating the Efficacy of a Professional Development Program in Classroom Assessment for Middle School Reading and Mathematics

Christina Schneider, South Carolina Department of Education

Abstract: The purpose of the project is to determine how best to deliver and implement standardized professional development (PD) in classroom assessment that meets (a) teacher needs across content areas and grade levels and (b) the need to provide cost-effective, effective PD.

The project serves mathematics and reading teachers and their students in South Carolina middle schools with below average and unsatisfactory report card ratings. Students are nested within treatment conditions. Various models will be tested to determine which model best explains student achievement on large-scale assessments.

The project is studying the effect of a PD program in assessment that includes a video-based portion, a companion document, and teacher collaboration on teacher practices and student performance. Schools are assigned randomly to either a treatment or a control group. The study uses quantitative measures to answer the research questions and qualitative approaches to determine the fidelity of implementation. The measured outcomes are: 1) teachers abilities to apply measurement principles and cognitive levels in assessments 2) student reading and mathematics achievement measured through benchmark assessments in the fall and statewide assessments in the spring.

Results of the study will show (a) whether teachers who participate in a PD program in assessment develop better classroom assessments than those who do not, (b) whether assessment coaches provide an effective method of supporting and sustaining teachers' abilities to improve assessments when compared to the PD program alone, and (c) whether students of teachers who receive PD in assessment have higher achievement than those who do not.