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ERIC Number: ED383083
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
Cost Analysis and Instructionally Sound Assessment Practices: Issues for Local Exploration.
On September 30, 1993, Far West Laboratory (FWL) and the California Assessment Collaborative (CAC) sponsored a cost/benefit forum to examine cost-analysis issues associated with the development and implementation of instructionally sound assessment. This report highlights the central ideas addressed at the forum, incorporates the audience participation and feedback, and casts the discussion in the context of local assessment reforms faced by California schools. Following a description of the forum proceedings, a summary of the major conceptual and methodological issues is presented. These issues included the infusion and allocation of limited resources, the distinction between expenditures and costs, types of benefits (benefits of the reform and those foregone), and factors influencing cost estimates (efficiency, alignment, and substitution). It is argued that the range of cost must be established in order to place some realistic boundaries on discussions of resources required for successful, local assessment reform. Educators and policy makers need to develop more sophisticated models of costs and benefits beyond the expenditure analysis most typically presented. Such models must include analyses of alternatives both in terms of expected benefits from the chosen option as well as the benefits foregone from those rejected. They should also include a range of scenarios that reflect high and low levels of substitution and efficiency. Rarely will reforms be paid fully by incorporating substitution methods. Consequently, policy makers must provide evidence of efficiency along with the arguments of alignment that are typically proffered when new programs are introduced. (LMI)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Far West Lab. for Educational Research and Development, San Francisco, CA.