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University of Connecticut Neag School of Education Office of Assessment

Assessment, Research, and Evaluation Colloquia: 2012-2013 School Year

Behavioral Assessment and Intervention: A Continuum of Effective Strategies in Schools

Presenter:   Dr. Nicholas A. Gage, Center for Behavioral Education at the Neag School of Education
Date:  Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Time:  10:00-12:00
Location:   Gentry 144

Description:  Behavioral assessment in schools comprises a variety of approaches based on context (whole classroom vs individual student) and behavior topography (off-task behavior vs physical aggression). Similarly, behavior intervention comprises a continuum of effective supports designed to address specific behavior targets, from classroom management strategies to functional behavioral assessment-based interventions. This presentation will provide a comprehensive overview of a framework for effectively integrating assessment and intervention in order to positively impact targeted problem behaviors in schools. Topics will include classroom management, structural analysis, and functional behavior assessment.

For the powerpoint to this presentation, click here.

Elite Schools and the Formation of a Cosmopolitan Imaginary

Presenter: Dr. Fazal Rizvi, Melbourne Graduate School of Education
Date: Thursday, October 11, 2012
Time: 1:00- 2:30
Location:  Gentry 142

Description: Using data emerging from a current research large scale international  project dealing with the manner in which elite schools in the British  public schools tradition around the world are negotiating the  challenges  and opportunities of globalization, this paper will discuss a range of  tentative findings relating to the ways in which these schools  interpret  an already existing cosmopolitan imaginary that students and their parents bring to the schools; and how the schools attempt to steer it into a different direction. I will argue that while the students and their parents often have a narrow instrumentalist view of education as  a  preparation for an increasingly globalized economy and labor market,  the  elite schools struggle to work with a broader vision of cosmopolitanism  and education that seeks to combine various competing traditions of  thinking around cosmopolitanism. In the process they do not entirely abandon a Kantian moral view of cosmopolitanism but seek instead to dissolve the tension between moral and economic purposes of education. However their attempts are often rendered ineffective in light of the governing logic of their class location and formation.

For the powerpoint to this presentation, click here.

Making Good on the Promise for all Learners: Implementing and Assessing the Connecticut State Standards in Music

Presenter: Dr. Linda Page Neelly
Date:  Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Time:  10:00-12:00
Location:   Gentry 144

Description: This interactive session provides opportunities for participants to explore and deliberate strategies for enriching the music curriculum through the integration of the Connecticut State music standards. The voices of elementary and middle school music teachers offer examples of ways in which they bring the standards and authentic assessments to life in their classrooms and how these have impacted not only their students’ musical development, but also their potential to learn and achieve. Participants contemplate appropriate music assessments for the implementation of the Connecticut State Standards.

For the powerpoint to this presentation, click here.

About the presenter:
Dr. Linda Page Neelly, currently Associate Professor of the Neag School of Education’s Music Education program in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, is known for her efforts to create intercultural music partnerships for young children and disadvantaged youth. She has written books on early childhood music, collaborated with organizations such as Sesame Street to develop music software, and consulted for national cultural organizations including the Metropolitan Opera and the National Opera in Washington DC. Her recent research and publications focus on transformative pedagogy in music teacher education and on the music learning of children with autism. She has made international and national presentations for the International Society for Music Education, Oxford UK University, Liverpool UK University, the College Music Society, the National Association for Music Education, and the National Association for the Education of Young Children.  She serves as a music consultant for the California Department of Education, Children’s Television Network, and the National Council on Education.

University Athletics and Academics: Addressing the Challenge of Congruence

Presenter: Dr. Richard Wolfe
Date: Monday, November 5, 2012
Time: 4:00-5:00pm
Location: Gentry 144

Dr. Wolfe will address the following issues:

Big-time college athletics has little to do with the  …  objectives of the contemporary university (James Duderstadt, former president, University of Michigan).

Why should an institution whose primary devotion [is] to  … scholarship devote so much effort to competitive athletics? (Harold Shapiro, former president, University of Michigan).

While these former presidents of the University of Michigan make such comments concerning the lack of fit between big-time college athletics (BTCA) and the core mission of universities, the University of Michigan, like many leading institutions of higher education, continues to be a major “player” in BTCA. 

The presentation will discuss:

1) How BTCA has prospered despite its acknowledged lack of congruence with the core mission of universities.

2) Innovative efforts to increase university-BTCA congruence, which while adopted, have not been implemented and/or have not diffused.

3) How the congruence between BTCA and the core mission of universities can be increased.

Standards-Based Grading

Presenter: Dr. Megan Welsh
Date:  Tuesday, November 6, 2012
Time:  10:00-12:00
Location:   Gentry 144

Description: Standards-based progress reports (SBPRs) differ from traditional report cards by requiring teachers to report student performance levels according to specific educational goals instead of broad content areas. They are an increasingly popular communication tool because they are believed to provide a richer description of academic progress than is provided with traditional report cards. It is also believed teachers will be more likely to focus their instruction on state standards if their grades are more closely tied to them. Therefore, SBPRs have emerged as a standards-based reform lever. This session will share lessons learned from a study of SBPR implementation in one district. It discusses both teachers’ perceptions of SBPR implementation and examines the consistency between SBPR grades and test scores and explores why some graded more consistently with state test scores than others. The session will conclude with implications for implementing or refining a standards-based grading effort.

For the powerpoint to this presentation, click here.

About the presenter:
Dr. Megan Welsh is an Assistant Professor in the Measurement, Evaluation and Assessment Program of the Neag School of Education, where she teaches courses in assessment, evaluation, and educational statistics. She has a B.A. from Wellesley College, a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from the University of California at Berkeley, and a Ph.D. in Measurement and Research Methods from the University of Arizona. She has been an elementary school teacher, an educational policy researcher, and a school district evaluation and assessment specialist. Her primary areas of research interest include validity analysis, testing as an educational reform lever, evaluation of educational programs for underprivileged children and families, and classroom assessment. She joined the University of Connecticut in 2008.

School-wide Information System: The SWIS Suite of Applications

Presenter: Dr. Susannah Everett
Date:  Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Time:  10:00-12:00
Location:   Gentry 144

Description: This session will provide an overview of the School-Wide Information System (or SWIS); a web-based system for gathering, entering, summarizing, and reporting student behavioral information.  The purpose of SWIS is to improve the ability of school personnel to develop safe and effective learning environments.  This session will demonstrate the SWIS suite of applications that supports school team decision-making across tiers of support, including SWIS, SWIS-CICO, and ISIS SWIS.  By attending this session, people will receive an overview of SWIS and how it differs from other school information systems; and understand when to use SWIS applications for decision making across tiers of support.

Grant Writing for School Leaders: How to Select a Fundable Idea, Conceptualize a Proposal and Write a Competitive Grant Narrative

Presenter: Dr. Stan Shaw
Date: Friday, March 22, 2013
Time: 10:00 - 2:00pm
Location: Gentry 144

In these challenging economic times it is imperative to access external grant funds to support school initiatives. This session will help school leaders identify grant opportunities, select a fundable idea, conceptualize a proposal, craft a productive abstract and write a competitive grant narrative.  Requests for Proposals currently available to Connecticut schools will be used as examples.

Dr. Stan Shaw is Professor Emeritus and Senior Research Scholar in the Educational Psychology Department, Neag School of Education, University of Connecticut, Storrs. He has been Project Director for more than six million dollars in grants from federal and state agencies and private foundations. The focus of his efforts has been on assisting at-risk students and teacher preparation. He teaches the Grant Writing course for graduate students at UConn.

To view the powerpoint for this event, click here.

How New Core Arts Standards Will Impact Common Core, Assessment & Evaluation

Presenter: Dr. Scott Schuler
Date: Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Time: 10:00-12:00pm
Location: Gentry 144

Connecticut's Arts Education specialist Scott Shuler presents a colloquium designed for arts educators and the school administrators who supervise and evaluate them. He will address several common questions, including: What vision will draft new National Core Arts Standards paint for the future of arts education? How will those new standards support Common Core standards in ELA and math? How will they affect arts assessment and arts teacher evaluation? As Immediate Past-President of the National Association for Music Education, co-chair of the National Standards writing team, and co-developer of Connecticut's Common Arts Assessments, Dr. Shuler brings a uniquely broad and well-informed perspective. Time will be provided for participant questions.

To sign-up for this event, click here.

The following links may be helpful for those attending:

To view the handout for this event, click here

Adolescent Literacy Assessment: Observing and Coaching Evidence-Based Instruction in Discipline Specific Classrooms

Presenters: Dr. Faggella-Luby. Mr. Joshua Wilson, and Ms. Yan Wei
Date:  Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Time:  10:00-12:00
Location:   Gentry 144

This session will present an observation tool for teachers and administrators to use based on the components of evidence-based literacy instruction for adolescent learners and the Common Core State Standards. Piloted in Connecticut English Language Arts classes, this tool facilitates teacher self-evaluation and planning, administrator walk-throughs, and peer-coaching. A specific version of the tool has been developed to surface components of evidence-based instruction across Scientifically Research Based Instruction (SRBI) multi-level tiers of service delivery. Specifically, the presentation will present: (a) a summary of recent research and tools for using observational assessment in secondary classrooms, (b) synthesis of six components of literacy instruction for use in Discipline Specific Classrooms, (c) a model of explicit instruction delivery within the SRBI framework, (d) the observation tool, and (e) suggestions and lessons learned from use of the assessment.

To sign-up for this event, click here.

To view the powerpoint for this event, click here.

About the presenters:
Dr. Faggella-Luby is currently an Associate Professor in the Neag School of Education’s Special Education Program in the Department of Educational Psychology here at UConn. He is also a research scientist at the Center for Behavioral Education and Research (CBER) and an associate research scholar at the Center on Postsecondary Education and Disability (CPED). Dr. Faggella-Luby’s program of research is focused around three interrelated interests associated with literacy supports for adolescents at-risk for failure and students with learning disabilities in secondary schools: (a) implementation of specific evidence-based pedagogies and interventions, (b) investigation of components of reading comprehension instruction associated with the burgeoning field of adolescent literacy, and (c) identification of critical systemic variables associated with school reform and intervention implementation. Dr. Faggella-Luby is a former high school administrator and teacher of both English and Chemistry.

Mr. Joshua Wilson is a doctoral student at the University of Connecticut in the Department of Educational Psy¬chology. Prior to becoming a doctoral student, Joshua was a special education teacher for several years. Joshua is currently the project manager of an IES-funded research project exploring the relationship between states’ standards/assessments and student writing achievement. He also teaches a class on assessment in special education. Joshua’s primary research interests are writing assessment, writing development, and interventions for struggling writers.

Ms. Yan Wei is a doctoral student of special education program in the Neag school of Education at the University of Connecticut. She is also a graduate assistant at the Center for Behavioral Education and Research. Yan's research interest focuses on literacy instruction and motivation for struggling adolescent readers.

Popular Music and Informal Pedagogy in Music Education

Presenter: Dr. Joseph Abramo
Date: Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Time: 10:00 - 12:00pm
Location: Gentry 144

This presentation will explore the use of popular music and informal pedagogy in music education. Areas covered include the how popular musicians learn and make music and its implementation into the classroom; addressing controversial repertoire and lyrics with students; and how educators might address sociological factors like gender and race and popular music. Current research as well as practical applications will be discussed.

To sign-up for this event, click here.

For the powerpoint to this presentation, click here.