EERA Network 9: Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Annual Report 2015
Conference program at ECER 2015
The conference program of Network 9 at ECER 2015 in Budapest consisted of 44 sessions with a total number of 114 contributions (this number includes joint contributions submitted to other networks). The network keynote was held this year by Jan-Eric Gustafsson (University of Gothenburg and University of Oslo) on the topic “Performance differences between age cohorts as reflectors of differences in quality of education”.
The sessions attracted a varied audience due to the range of different topics presented. Most sessions were attended by 10 to 20 people. Single sessions such as the joint symposia with Networks 13 and 16 attracted up to 50 participants. The network keynote, as highlight in the conference program, had an audience of more than 80 participants.
The Network 9 program and its organization once again comprised an international body of researchers with authors from 32 countries, chairpersons and discussants from 24 countries, and reviewers from 23 countries.
Of the six symposia organized in the conference program of Network 9, three were organized solely within Network 9 and addressed the following topics:
•Towards explaining achievement: Findings from International Comparative Achievement Studies
(Symposium organizers: Wilfried Bos, Eugenio Gonzalez, Martin Goy, Monica Rosén and Jana Strakova)
This symposium contained two sessions with a total number of four papers.
•Formative assessment in science and mathematics education
(Symposium organizer: David Leat)
This symposium had one session with four papers.
•Education-based program modeling, implementation, and modification – defining systematic methods and strategies
(Symposium organizer: Catherine Darrow)
This symposium had one session with three papers.
Three further symposia were organized as joint ventures between Network 9 and other networks as part of activities across network boundaries:
•Educational goals and the PISA assessments
(Symposium organizer: Padraig Hogan)
This joint symposium with Network 13 (Philosophy of Education) included three papers from Network 13 while the discussant was sent from Network 9.
•Students’ Computer and Information Literacy from a European Perspective. Findings from ICILS 2013
(Symposium organizers: Julia Gerick, Birgit Eickelmann, Wilfried Bos and Julian Fraillon)
This symposium consisted of two sessions with six papers and was conceived as a joint endeavor to bring together researchers from Network 9 and Network 16 (ICT in Education and Training).
•Teaching and learning with ICT in the Context of ICILS 2013. A European Perspective on School and Teacher Characteristics
(Symposium organizers: Birgit Eickelmann, Julia Gerick, Wilfried Bos and John Ainley)
This symposium comprised two sessions with six papers in total and was also jointly organized by Networks 9 and 16.
Furthermore, the program of Network 9 included 31 paper sessions on the following topics (in alphabetic order):
- Ascertaining core concepts and practices of empirical educational research: Reviews on validity theory and qualitative research standards
- Assessing attitudes and competencies in primary and secondary education
- Assessing citizenship and cosmopolitanism
- Assessing ethical attitudes, moral development and academically delinquent behavior
- Assessing linguistic competencies: Phonological ability, spelling and writing
- Assessing students' and teachers' roles and perceptions
- Assessment practice and competency development: Roles and perceptions of students and teachers
- Assessment practices, performance interpretations and grades
- Assessments and surveys in adult and higher education
- Assessments in early childhood and preschool settings
- Assessments in second-, bi- and multi-language settings
- Developing and scrutinizing tests in the domains of finance, accountancy and economics
- Developing and validating instruments for teacher assessments
- Developing and validating instruments for tests and assessments
- Evaluations and school improvement
- Findings from international and national large-scale assessments: Relating teacher variables to student achievement
- Findings from international large-scale assessments: Trend perspectives on achievement and inequalities
- Findings from large-scale assessments: School composition and frame-of-reference-effects
- Findings from PIRLS and TIMSS/PIRLS Combined: Relating achievement to student, home and school variables
- Findings from PISA: Relating achievement to student and context factors
- Findings from PISA: Research on inequality and resilience
- Formative assessments in primary, secondary and vocational education
- Investigating adolescent and adult competencies in their relations to educational participation and transition
- Investigating factors underlying school choice and educational transition
- Mathematics and physics learning and teaching: Synthesizing findings and developing instruments
- Relating assessment policies and performance interpretations to school and student variables
- Summative and formative assessments in primary and secondary education
- Teachers’ conceptions and uses of assessments
- Theoretical and methodological issues in tests and assessments (Part 1)
- Theoretical and methodological issues in tests and assessments (Part 2)
- Uses and interpretations of educational data in system monitoring and evidence-based governance
In addition to these sessions, Network 13 (Philosophy of Education) invited Network 9 to have a Long Paper Session with Network 13 papers on the topic of PISA as a joint session. The session was thus included in the programs of both networks to attract audience also from Network 9.
Further, one research workshop with two consecutive sessions on the topic “Using the international large-scale student assessments’ databases for secondary analysis” was held in Network 9. Workshops such as these have been held for four times now in Network 9. They are of high value and relevance for the network’s goal of building the professional capacities particularly for emerging researchers. However, research workshops such as these should more ideally be placed in a pre-conference setting. Network 9 has repeatedly tried over the past years to negotiate this with EERA (on this issue see also the minutes of the network meeting included below).
Network 9 complements the workshops at ECER with one-week spring schools on “Advanced Methods in Educational Research” in order to offer additional high-level capacity building to PhD students and Post-docs. These spring schools have been held annually since 2011 (for details, see the minutes of the network meeting included below).
At ECER 2015 no posters were presented in Network 9 due to the selection process in the double blind peer review of submissions and also due to a number of withdrawals of accepted posters after the deadline for compulsory conference registration.
The overall intake of initial submissions of proposals for contributions to Network 9 at ECER 2015 ranges once again high among the EERA networks, with 133 submissions before redirections, rejections and withdrawals (this number does not include those joint contributions with other networks that were initially submitted to the other networks and not to Network 9). The number of contributions finally to be presented in Network 9 was considerably lower due to the selection process in the review of submissions and also due to a number of authors withdrawing their submissions shortly before the conference. Lack of travel funds as well as unforeseen work commitments and urgent personal reasons were among the reasons given for those late withdrawals. Beyond these reasons it was also visible that the new rule by EERA to withdraw contributions if the authors did not register for the conference by a stated deadline had an effect on the final contribution numbers in Network 9.
As in previous years, Network 9 supported the Emerging Researchers’ Conference (ERC) by participating in the review process and by serving in chairing sessions in the ERC. Network 9 considers this a matter of inter-network courtesy and also as an opportunity for offering feedback to those researchers who start out in the Emerging Researchers Group and join our network later on.
For further details on the work and activities in Network 9 see the minutes of the network meeting at ECER 2015 (see below) and the different sections of the website of Network 9.