Volume 14 Issue 2 (2018)
Main Articles

Toward a Dialogue: Following Professional Standards on Education Achievement Testing

Gabriel Della-Piana
University of Utah
Michael King Gardner
University of Utah
Zachary M. Mayne
University of Utah
Published January 15, 2019
  • educational assessment,
  • educational measurement,
  • professional standard,
  • research process,
  • research purpose,
  • researcher’s role,
  • research collaboration,
  • trajectory of development
  • ...More


The authors describe challenges of following professional standards for educational achievement testing due to the complexity of gathering appropriate evidence to support demanding test interpretation and use. Validity evidence has been found to be low for some individual testing standards, leading to the possibility of faulty or impoverished test interpretation and use. In response to this context, measurement professionals have called for a theory of action including behavior changes of multiple agents involved in the testing process. Also, changing roles have been seen for a broad range of agents including test developers, those who influence testing, and those influenced by testing. Some of these roles are discussed and others illustrated with examples from practice. A sociocultural theory of action noted in the literature is proposed as a thematic guide to practice. The paper concludes with a call for dialogue and two research and development tasks that might advance practice.