Bill Woodard
Achievement & Assessment Institute

Center for Educational Testing and Evaluation announces lead psychometrician

Wed, 09/03/2014

LAWRENCE — The Achievement & Assessment Institute at the University of Kansas has announced the hiring of Scott Bishop, an executive from ACT Inc. with nearly two decades of research and development experience in K-12 assessments in a variety of capacities. Bishop will serve as lead psychometrician for AAI’s Center for Educational Testing & Evaluation (CETE).

“We are very excited that Scott Bishop is joining our team as the lead psychometrician,” said CETE Director Marianne Perie. “His breadth of experience working with multiple states using a range of psychometric models will enhance our capacity and allow us to provide a greater depth of expertise to all of our state partners.”

The field of psychometrics applies mathematical models or evaluations to measure psychological or mental processes that can’t be measured directly. Psychometricians assess intelligence or cognitive abilities, aptitudes, interests, personality traits and psychopathologies (mental disorders); they also construct methods and formats for reporting results in meaningful ways.

As CETE’s lead psychometrician, Bishop’s focus is educational achievement testing — identifying the best ways to quantify how much a student has learned. Working with subject-matter experts, he and his team will help design valid, reliable and technically sound general, alternative and alternate assessments that provide evidence of student progress in academic topics such as mathematics, science, English language arts and social studies.

Bishop comes to CETE from ACT Inc., where he served as content lead for K-12 assessment programs. During his career, he has provided technical support to many large-scale norm- and criterion-referenced testing programs. He has also consulted on formative assessment programs, supported the development of several off-the-shelf tests and oversaw a number of special linking and validity studies. Bishop has authored research papers on equating, vertical scaling and differential-item functioning and refereed submitted papers for the National Council on Measurement in Education Conference and the Journal of Educational Measurement. He is former editor of the NCME Newsletter.

Bishop holds a Ph.D. in educational measurement and statistics from the University of Iowa, an Ed.S. and M.Ed. in school psychology from James Madison University, and a B.S. in psychology from Radford University.

CETE develops and administers educational testing programs that translate industry-leading research into real-world solutions. These programs assist teachers in identifying strategies to help their students reach their best potential and make testing accessible and applicable for students of all ability levels. The states of Kansas and Alaska entrust their public-school assessment programs to CETE, as do the 19 member states in the Dynamic Learning Maps Consortium, a CETE-developed alternate-assessment system for students with significant cognitive disabilities.

About the Achievement & Assessment Institute
Established in 2012, AAI is the umbrella organization for four specialized research centers at KU: CETE, Agile Technology Solutions, the Center for Public Partnerships & Research and the Center for Educational Opportunity Programs. Directed by Neal Kingston, professor in the Department of Psychology and Research in Education in the School of Education, AAI builds partnerships, products and programs in educational practice, assessment and evaluation. These initiatives benefit children, adults, communities and publicly funded agencies at the local, state and national levels.

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Wanna Skype? Chancellor gets creative to surprise Truman winner. See it here:
Rock Chalk! Junior Ashlie Koehn named KU's 18th Truman Scholar
Ashlie Koehn, a University of Kansas junior from Burns studying in Kyrgyzstan, interrupted helping her host family prepare dinner to make a Skype call on Monday evening.

.@KU bschool 's KIP team includes @KU _SADP students in all-ages housing project. #KUworks
Wanna Skype? Chancellor gets creative to surprise Truman winner From KU News Service: Ashlie Koehn, a University of Kansas junior from Burns studying in Kyrgyzstan, interrupted helping her host family prepare dinner to make a Skype call on Monday evening. To her surprise, Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little was on the other end of the call letting Koehn know she had been named a 2015 Harry S. Truman Scholar. Koehn is the 18th KU student to be named a Truman Scholar and the only 2015 recipient from the state of Kansas. Earlier this month, she was also named a 2015 Udall Scholar. And in spite of a distance of more than 10,800 kilometers and 11 time zones, Koehn’s thrill from hearing the news from the chancellor came through loud and clear. “Ashlie’s experience at KU epitomizes a quality undergraduate experience. She challenged herself in her coursework, exposed herself to different research opportunities, studied abroad in Germany, Switzerland and Kyrgyzstan, and participated in both student government and community service projects,” Gray-Little said. “This is quite a year for Ashlie. Her hard work is a wonderful reflection on her and also a great reflection on the university, and we all congratulate her.” Each new Truman Scholar receives up to $30,000 for graduate study. Scholars also receive priority admission and supplemental financial aid at some premier graduate institutions, leadership training, career and graduate school counseling, and special internship opportunities within the federal government. Koehn, a member of KU’s nationally recognized University Honors Program, is majoring in environmental studies, economics and international studies. Her goal after earning her KU degree is to pursue a master’s degree in economics at either the London School of Economics or the University of Reading, with a focus on the economics of climate change. In 2014, she received KU’s Newman Civic Engagement Award for her work establishing the Coalition against Slavery and Trafficking. Her involvement with the issue was sparked by Hannah Britton, associate professor of political science and women, gender, and sexuality studies, who hosted national conference on contemporary slavery at KU three years ago. “Ashlie and I met several times to think about what KU students could contribute to the issue of slavery and human trafficking, and the result was her founding of KU CAST,” Britton said. “After a year as president, Ashlie successfully handed the organization over to the next student leader. She demonstrated her strong leadership qualities by setting a unique goal and then pursuing it with her sense of passion, engagement and dedication. No matter the country or context, her leadership strength is evident in her coursework, her public service and her work experiences.” The University Honors Program works with a campus committee to select KU’s nominees for the Truman Scholarship and supports them during the application process. Anne Wallen, assistant director of national fellowships and scholarships, noted it was an amazing ruse to pull off the surprise. Originally, the call was set up to be between Wallen and Koehn. “I was totally not prepared to be greeted by Chancellor Gray-Little, but it was an amazing surprise for sure,” Koehn said. “As a first-generation student, it took time to learn the collegiate system, but my parents taught me to be resourceful and independent from a young age and KU and the Kansas Air National Guard have provided me with the opportunities to drive me into the future, both at graduate school and in my career. I plan to use the Truman Scholarship to pursue a career as an environmental economist helping to shape future trade agreements and leverage action on important international environmental issues, particularly concerning climate change.” Koehn also had a surprise of her own for the chancellor — the meal she was helping to prepare was not exactly typical Kansas dinner fare. On the menu with her host family in Kyrgyzstan on Monday was a traditional Kyrgyz meal called Beshbarmak, or “five fingers,” because you eat it with your hands. The dish is made of horse and sheep and was being prepared as a birthday celebration for Koehn’s host mom. Chancellor Gray-Little, as she signed off from Skype, made sure to encourage Koehn to enjoy her Beshbarmak. Koehn is the daughter of Rodney and Carolyn Koehn of Burns. She graduated from Fredric Remington High School in Moundridge. She is an active member of the Kansas Air National Guard and currently on leave while studying abroad in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. She is a member of the KU Global Scholars Program and a past member of the Student Senate. In addition to being named a 2015 Truman and Udall scholar, she was named a 2014 Boren Scholar and Gilman Scholar and in 2013 was named the Kansas Air National Guard Airman of the Year.

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