skip to main content skip to footer

Continuing a Culture of Evidence: Student-Level Assessment MOOC

Markle, Ross
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Report
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Student Learning Outcomes, Higher Education, Public Policy, Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), Score Reporting, Credentialing, Formative Assessment, Student Improvement, Educational Accountability, Competency Based Education, Student Motivation, Culture of Evidence, Student-Level Assessment


From 2006 to 2008, Educational Testing Service (ETS) produced a series of reports titled A Culture of Evidence, designed to capture a changing climate in higher education assessment. A decade later, colleges and universities already face a new set of challenges resulting from societal, technological, and various other influences. ETS is now initiating a new series of reports that describe current issues and trends in assessment and how they relate to the needs of higher education institutions. In this report, I discuss an increasing need to understand individual students rather than whole institutions. Previous models of assessment, which focused on comparability and accountability, made inferences at the group level, often comparing one institution to a group of similar institutions. However, emerging trends in the ways students learn, the sources of the learning, and the use of assessment results have made aggregate data alone insufficient. Greater consideration of student-level data could help to foster emerging educational trends as well as guide learning in existing colleges and universities.

Read More