OAT Awarded for Best Assessment Tool and Global Leadership

Receiving the EdTech Digest finalist Awards for best assessment tool and best global leader

The long-awaited results of the 2023 EdTech Digest Awards are finally in! We’re delighted that Open Assessment Technologies (OAT) has been awarded in the ‘Cool Tool – Best Assessment Tool’ and ‘Global Leadership’ categories, recognizing our open source manual scoring solution, TAO Grader, and OAT’s Co-founder and CEO, Mark Oswald, as disruptors in the EdTech industry. The EdTech Awards Cool Tool and Leadership Finalist 2023 badges.

The “largest and most competitive recognition program in all of education technology,” the EdTech Awards program was formed in 2010 to celebrate the most exceptional innovators, leaders, and trendsetters in education technology. Featuring the industry’s established and rising stars, the annual program spotlights cool tools, inspiring leaders, and innovative trendsetters across the K-12, Higher Education, and Workforce Development sectors.

“To be among finalists for both the Cool Tool and Leadership EdTech Awards with EdTech Digest feels wonderful” says Ashley Senkarik, VP at OAT.  “Our number one priority is to work toward building a better future for education by evolving our assessment technology and services with the changing needs of the landscape, and to receive this acknowledgement is another affirmation of the impact we’re able to make” – Ashley Senkarik, VP at OAT

These accolades follow TAO’s first place winning streak during the Fall 2022 Tech Edvocate Awards, where TAO Grader and OAT’s Co-Founder and CEO were once again recognized as the ‘Best Assessment Tool’ and ‘Best Global Edtech Leader,’ respectively, and OAT also won for ‘Best Global EdTech Startup.’ In the same awards season, TAO was additionally named as a finalist with the OE Global program for “Best Open Infrastructure.”  

A Closer Look at TAO Grader 

Listed among the best assessment tools, TAO Grader is the industry’s first open source online manual scoring application for grading open response and essay questions, tailored for both small-scale, low-stakes, and national, high-stake assessment programs. As an out-of-the-box solution, TAO Grader is fully integrated with the TAO platform and offers easy-to-use, end-to-end workflows for organizing, storing, and sharing results and student data. The scoring tool is a multilingual solution and can be easily extended to support new language functionality. The interface is also responsive across devices and different browsers, allowing scoring to be conveniently conducted on a tablet. 

Leveraging a modern design based on real user feedback, the web-based user interface for TAO Grader is natively accessible, following WCAG 2.1 AA standards, and can be used with a screen-reader for those users with visual impairments.

CEO Spotlight

Co-founder and CEO of OAT, Marc Oswald is a recognized industry disruptor in the education space, playing an instrumental role in driving the use of open source assessment software to provide better, more equitable learning opportunities globally. Working with the Luxembourg Institute for Science and Technology (LIST), he helped to conceptualize the TAO assessment platform and co-founded Open Assessment Technologies as the publisher of TAO to further evolve and align the platform to industry standards. 

Marc is a vocal proponent of interoperability through industry standards, spearheading achievements with the IMS Global Learning Consortium to ensure standards compliance across TAO’s solutions and to provide end-users with a stronger voice in setting the direction of assessment technology. He served as the first chairman of the 1EdTech (formerly IMS Global) Executive Board on Assessment, which he initiated in 2015 with the goal of significantly improving the interoperability of assessment content and reducing the total cost of ownership for assessment providers globally. 

Prior to IMS Global, Marc served on the boards of the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) and the Fibre Channel Industry Association (FCIA) from which he received a lifetime achievement award for his work on solutions interoperability.

In recent years, Marc has worked closely with the National Center and State Collaborative (NCSC) and PARCC, the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College & Careers, to fulfill their vision of an open source solution stack to be used by multiple states. Additionally, he has collaborated with leading ministries of education in Europe to launch FLIP+, a fast growing organization that embodies the sharing economy in Assessment.

Want to see how TAO could simplify the entire assessment cycle — from authoring to delivery, grading and reporting — at your organization? Connect with a Solutions Specialist today to learn more about our range of packages. Whether you’re just getting started with digital assessment or are looking for a completely custom solution, we’re here to support your goals.


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