Improving international assessment through evaluation

David Rutkowski
2017 Assessment in education : Principles, Policy & Practice  
The goal of this special issue was to focus on empirical, conceptual, and theoretical perspectives on reading assessment in international studies. In that regard, the editors where able to bring together top scholars in the field to share a range of viewpoints and findings. Rather than comment on each individual paper, which are of high quality, I would like to expand the discussion of the special issue and focus on what I see as an emerging issue for international large scale assessments
more » ... e assessments (ILSAs) more broadly: the need for a focused discussion of the merit and worth of ILSAs in the 21 st century. To do this, I will draw on some of the findings from the papers in this special issue as examples of the ways the field is moving and how I believe the authors were limited, not by their expertise, but by the nature of the data. To that end, a close reading of the papers reveals an emergent and cohesive theme that could be described as unique methods applied in an effort to expand the usefulness of ILSA data. As a result, this special issue highlights the need for a larger discussion, one that calls for a reexamination of ILSAs and their use. In what follows I will briefly outline examples of how I believe these papers speak to the limits of ILSA data. Subsequently, I outline how national participation in a meta-evaluation of ILSAs can assist study administrators and ILSA users in creating data that fits the needs of a complex and diverse set of participants.
doi:10.1080/0969594x.2017.1300572 fatcat:axt4bur5nvgbjbton2ijsme5l4