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ERIC Number: ED528503
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 9
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 30
Exploring the Utility of a Virtual Performance Assessment
Clarke-Midura, Jody; Code, Jillianne; Zap, Nick; Dede, Chris
Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness
With funding from the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), the Virtual Performance Assessment project at the Harvard Graduate School of Education is developing and studying the feasibility of immersive virtual performance assessments (VPAs) to assess scientific inquiry of middle school students as a standardized component of an accountability program (see The purpose is to provide states with reliable and valid technology-based performance assessments linked to state and NSES academic standards around science content and inquiry practices. In order to ensure construct validity, the authors are using the Evidence Centered Design framework (ECD; Mislevy, Steinberg, & Almond, 2003) to design their assessments. ECD formalizes the procedures generally done by expert assessment developers (Shute, Hansen, & Almond, 2007). Using the ECD approach, an evidentiary assessment argument is formed that connects claims, evidence, and supporting rationales. ECD "provides a framework for developing assessment tasks that elicit evidence (scores) that bears directly on the claims that one wants to make about what a student knows and can do" (Shute, et al., 2007, p. 6). The authors are conducting a series of studies around reliability, validity, and usability of their VPAs. Due to limited space, this paper presents research findings on usability and utility. However, the authors will also present results of their validity and reliability studies whose methods are reported in other papers (e.g Clarke-Midura, Code, Zap, Dede, in press). (Contains 3 tables.)
Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness. 2040 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208. Tel: 202-495-0920; Fax: 202-640-4401; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Middle Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (SREE)