Presenter: Derek C. Briggs, PhD, Chair, Research and Evaluation Methodology Program, Associate Professor of Education, University of Colorado at Boulder
Lecture: An Economist, a Psychometrician, and a Father of a Special Needs Child Walk into a School…
Derek Briggs is chair of the Research and Evaluation Methodology Program at the University of Colorado at Boulder, where he also serves as an associate professor of quantitative methods and policy analysis. In general, his research agenda focuses upon building sound methodological approaches for the valid measurement and evaluation of growth in student achievement. His daily agenda is to challenge conventional wisdom and methodological chicanery as they manifest themselves in educational research, policy and practice. Examples of his research interests related to educational assessment include (1) the use (and misuse) of developmental score scales to model growth in student learning, (2) creating psychometric models that facilitate diagnostic inferences about hypothesized student learning progressions. Examples of research interests in applied statistics include the critical analysis of the statistical models used to make causal inferences about the effects of teachers, schools and other educational interventions on the growth of student achievement. He is widely recognized for his evaluations of the effects of test preparation on college admissions exam performance. Dr. Briggs is a member of the technical advisory committees of three of the large-scale assessment consortia that were funded under the Race to the Top Competition (NCSC, PARCC and SBAC). He is also a member of the American Educational Research Association, the American Statistical Association, the National Council for Measurement in Education, and the Psychometric Society.
This lectureship is made possible by a generous endowment from Dr. Frank B. Womer, who served the School of Education as a professor of educational measurement for 30 years. Dr. Womer was staff director of the National Assessment for Educational Progress when it launched the first nationwide effort to assess student achievement in basic subjects. He also founded the annual Michigan School Testing Conference which continues to this day under the sponsorship of the School of Education. His gift reflects his abiding commitment to the School of Education and its role in improving the quality of education in a democratic society. He is happily still alive and participates with enthusiasm in each year’s lecture.