Gordon Commission Report Lays Out 10-Year Vision for Assessment

Following two years of study, the Gordon Commission on the Future of Assessment in Education released a set of recommendations calling for a more balanced approach to testing in the United States.

“The primary purpose of assessment ought to be to inform and improve teaching and learning,” said Dr. Edmund Gordon, chairman of the commission and emeritus professor at Yale University and Teachers College, Columbia University.

The report also emphasizes the need for more research in the field, particularly around the role of technology in changing what is assessed, how it is assessed and how to make results more useful for teachers and students.

The report includes three recommendations for policymakers:

  • States should create a permanent Council on Educational Assessments modeled after the Education Commission of the States.
  • President Obama and Congress should use the pending reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and other federal laws to promote new ideas about assessment.
  • The U.S. Department of Education, the Department of Defense, the National Science Foundation, and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, in collaboration with the philanthropic community, non-profit, for-profit sector, professional teacher organizations and universities should commit to a 10-year research and development effort to strengthen the capacity of the nation’s assessment enterprise.

The 30-member Gordon Commission includes scholars, policymakers and practitioners.

Read the full report here.


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