The committee asserts that the evaluation criteria and evidence for these assessments should be rigorous, just as rigorous as those for conventional teacher licensure tests. The committee suspects, however, that the forms of evidence that will be telling and the criteria that should guide judgments about the soundness and technical quality of the assessments described here may differ somewhat from those outlined in Chapter 4. The committee challenges test developers, practitioners, and researchers to consider its evaluation framework as well as other more conventional evaluation frameworks and to decide which criteria best apply to judgments about newer forms of assessments, which criteria have important and helpful corollaries, and where new criteria may be needed that address the particular validity issues raised by performance-based assessments. For example, consistency and generalizability are important criteria in traditional evaluation frameworks; although they might be instantiated differently, they are potentially important concepts in evaluating alternative assessments as well. The utility of other evaluation criteria that speak to the unique validity issues raised by these assessments also should be considered. Furthermore, careful study of the validity criteria used by these performance-based assessment programs might suggest additional criteria that are relevant to more conventional forms of assessment. It is beyond the committee’s charge to suggest appropriate validity practices for new forms of assessment. It urges the field to do so.
Several new and developing teacher assessment systems use a variety of testing and assessment methods, including assessments of teaching performance. They include multiple measures of candidates’ knowledge, skills, abilities, and dispositions. In these systems, assessments are integrated with professional development and with the ongoing support of prospective or beginning teachers.
Given its analysis of systems that employ performance-based assessments, the committee concludes:
New and developing assessment systems warrant investigation for addressing the limits of current initial teacher licensure tests and for improving teacher licensure. The benefits, costs, and limitations of these systems should be investigated.