I recently read a disturbing article in the New York Times regarding the Opt-Out movement in the State of New York. I find this downright appalling. There are many sorts of standardized assessments, and the ones we are talking about here exist to improve the quality of education. They check to see whether students are […]
About Nathan Thompson, PhD
I am a psychometrician, software developer, author, and researcher, currently serving as Chief Product Officer for Assessment Systems Corporation (ASC). My mission is to elevate the profession of psychometrics by using software to automate the menial stuff like job analysis and Angoff studies, so we can focus on more innovative work. My core goal is to improve assessment throughout the world.
I was originally trained as a psychometrician, doing an undergrad at Luther College in Math/Psych/Latin and then a PhD in Psychometrics at the University of Minnesota. I then worked multiple roles in the testing industry, including item writer, test development manager, essay test marker, consulting psychometrician, software developer, project manager, and business leader.
Research and innovation are incredibly important to me. In addition to my own research, I am cofounder and Membership Director at the International Association for Computerized Adaptive Testing, You can often find me at other important conferences like ATP, ICE, CLEAR, and NCME. I've published many papers and presentations, and my favorite remains http://pareonline.net/getvn.asp?v=16&n=1.
Entries by Nathan Thompson, PhD
Some time ago, I received this question regarding interpreting IRT cutscores (item response theory): In my examination system, we are currently labeling ‘FAIL’ for student’s mark with below 50% and ‘PASS’ for 50% and above. I found that this amazing Xcalibre software can classify students’ achievement in 2 groups based on scores. But, when I […]
Assessment Systems is located in Minnetonka, MN, just outside Minneapolis. Our location provides many advantages, including a highly skilled tech workforce, the benefits of being near Minneapolis without having to be in it, connections to the University of Minnesota, and being in the center of the surprisingly large cluster of the assessment industry located in Minnesota. […]
Assessment Systems held its 2015 annual meeting on August 27, supported by the theme of 20/20 vision. Presentations included: Our story and our vision for the future – Dave Saben (VP of Growth) and Terry Ausman (VP of Client Services) Collaborative company resume – Cassandra Bettenberg (Account Manager) Where are we? – Nathan Thompson, PhD […]
Assessment Systems has seen tremendous growth over the past few years and moved to a new location on August 15. The new space better reflects our brand as a leader in educational technology and psychometrics (the Science of AssessmentTM). It will also enhance our team’s capability to serve our partners in providing the best […]
The State of Connecticut has enacted a new policy to require all 11th grade students to take the SAT (New York Times, 6 Aug 2015). As a lifelong advocate of quality assessment, this concerns me. I consider Instruction and Assessment to be the two primary components of Education; instruction without assessment is like a weight loss program […]
Local Newspaper Discusses Test Fraud The St. Paul Pioneer Press recently published an article on instances of test fraud and security breaches experienced in K-12 assessments in the State of Minnesota (where Assessment Systems is located). The article does a good job at explaining some of the issues: The root issue is that the […]
EdSurge (http://www.edsurge.com) has compiled a list of EdTech conferences, complete with a fun infographic. It includes big ones like Maker Fair, SXSWEDU, and ISTE, as well as smaller or more regional conferences. I appreciate all the time that EdSurge put into this. I’m also interested in their endeavor to update their EdTech Index, since […]
Last night, I had the honor to sit on a panel discussing Current Themes in Educational Assessment at an Educelerate event. Educelerate “is a networking forum for people who are passionate about promoting innovation and entrepreneurship in education – particularly through the use of technology.” It is a national network, and the Twin Cities has an […]
The Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) is a consortium of US States working together to develop educational assessments aligned with the Common Core State Standards. This is a daunting task, and PARCC is doing an admirable job, especially with their focus on utilizing technology. However, one of the new item […]