Research Harold Levine Jamal Abedi

A Look at the Impact of New Assessments on English Learners

Article by Jamal Abedi and Harold Levine for Leadership Magazine - February 2013

Professor Jamal Abedi and Dean Harold Levine of the UC Davis School of Education have penned “Fairness in Assessment of English Learners” published in the January/February issue of Leadership, a publication of the Association of California School Administrators.

Major changes and restructuring of the K-12 assessment and accountability system are expected as the nation transitions to a new generation of assessment systems based on the Common Core State Standards. These assessments are expected to be fully operational by 2014-15. Levine and Abedi, an internationally recognized expert on assessment for English learners and students with disabilities, outline the challenges states and districts face in assuring that assessments of English learners are “fair and valid.”

“The new systems require responses that are higher levels of language proficiency from all students,” the article reads. For English learners, who already struggle with assessments that overly complex linguistically, the challenge is to create new, more challenging assessments that reduce unnecessary complexity and cultural biases, the authors explain. Access the magazine online here.

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