Buros Center hosts 'Big Issues in Testing' conference

The Buros Center for Testing, part of the College of Education and Human Sciences, is hosting a national conference March 28-29 in Lincoln.

"Big Issues in Testing: Improving Admissions and Learning in Higher Education" will feature speakers from eight Big Ten universities. The conference will examine the assessment process used to admit students in undergraduate and graduate programs and how higher education assesses student-learning progress.

The conference is open to any individual interested in testing and assessment issues in higher education. Nearly 70 faculty, administrators, professional staff, graduate students and policy makers at the postsecondary and K-12 levels are expected to attend in person, with another group of 16 participating via live webcast. The event will be at the Nebraska Union.

Jessica Jonson, research associate professor at the Buros Center for Testing, said that Buros staff wanted to celebrate UNL’s addition to the Big Ten conference so they generated the idea for the conference by reviewing the testing and assessment scholarship among their Big Ten colleagues and found that higher education assessment was an area of innovative scholarship.

“There’s a national call for greater accountability for student learning and graduation rates in higher education,” said Jonson. “It is a growing issue that K-12 education has been facing for many years. We hope this conference will prompt a broader audience to carefully consider what we test, how we test, who we test, and for what purposes we test. We will then be able to gather credible, valid and meaningful information about what our students know and can do as they enter our institutions, as they leave our institutions, and how well our institutions engage them while they are here.”

Issues to be discussed at the conference include the extent to which testing and assessment produces desired result or effect, influence of the context in which assessment occurs, implications for special and minority populations, lessons higher education can learn from K-12 assessment, and future challenges for testing and assessment for admissions and learning.

For more information on the Big Issues in Testing conference, including a list of presenters, go to http://buros.org/conference.

More details at: http://go.unl.edu/2nq