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Modeling Change in Large-Scale Longitudinal Studies of Educational Growth: Four Decades of Contributions to the Assessment of Educational Growth ETS R&D Scientific and Policy Contributions Series IRT NLS HS&B NELS ECLS-K ECLS-B

Rock, Donald A.
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Report Number:
ETS Research Report
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Subject/Key Words:
Adaptive Tests, Two-Stage Testing, Criterion Referenced Tests, Gain Scores, Measuring Change, Learning Milestones, Locus of Maximum Learning Gain, Item Response Theory (IRT), Growth Curves, National Longitudinal Study of the High School Class of 1972 (NLS), High School and Beyond (HS&B), National Educational Longitudinal Study of 1988 (NELS), Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class of 1998-99 (ECLS-K), Early Childhood Longitudinal Study Birth Cohort (ECLS-B)


This paper provides a history of ETS’s role in developing assessment instruments and psychometric procedures for measuring change in large-scale national assessments funded by the Longitudinal Studies branch of the National Center for Education Statistics. It documents the innovations developed during more than 30 years of working with longitudinal studies based on national samples. In addition to describing these innovations, it provides their rationale and presents some empirical results in their support.

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