OAT Brings Their Experience in Open Standards and Collaborative Ecosystems to the Testing & Assessment Community
BELVAL, LUXEMBOURG – (May 4, 2015) – Open Assessment Technologies S.A. (OAT) – the leading Open Source assessment platform provider for education and public sector employment – today announced that its Co-founder and CEO, Marc Oswald, will chair the newly formed IMS Executive Board on Assessment (EBA). EBA seeks to accelerate the adoption of e-assessment solutions around the world by establishing strong end-to-end interoperability between assessment content and platforms. The EBA is going to accomplish this by bringing together a committed group of industry executives from leading organizations in education in the pursuit of one common goal.
“We are thrilled to be working with such a high caliber group of organizations, many of whom have already made significant contributions to content interoperability,” said Marc Oswald, Co-founder and CEO of OAT and first chairman of the EBA. “Together with our fellow charter members we will create a fully interoperable end-to-end assessment ecosystem that will become a reference for users around the globe. We are enthusiastic about the collective positive impact all of us can make on the testing and assessment community, and we are eager to bring meaningful change to our industry.”
EBA’s formation comes at a time of growing support within the industry for assessment interoperability. States, school districts, individual schools and even parent organizations are calling for a more unified approach to assessment. This creates a strong incentive for competing players to grow beyond their traditional silos and collaborate on a solution that breaks down barriers created by proprietary content solutions.
Chris Domaleski, a Senior Associate at the National Center for the Improvement of Educational Assessment who works with the National Center and State Collaborative, reinforced the pressing need for an open ecosystem, “We encourage vendors and end-users to work collaboratively to support the goal of making fully portable assessments a reality.”
“Open standards allows us to more easily integrate systems, partners, and opportunities in the future,” said Jeffrey Cuff, Director of Technology at Parcc Inc., the nonprofit organization that manages the assessment system on behalf of the PARCC states. “Even more importantly, it provides significant savings for maintenance compared to other alternatives.”
OAT has long been committed to an open assessment ecosystem. Most recently, in December 2014 OAT became the first company to achieve QTI compliance in all four categories: authoring and editing systems, delivery systems, item and test bank systems, and most importantly, the QTI content itself. OAT’s leadership in creating the EBA is a natural extension of OAT’s and IMS’ mutual drive to bring true portability to the assessment community.
“We’re pleased that OAT and many other IMS member organizations are committed to an e-assessment ecosystem based on interoperability and standards,” said Dr. Rob Abel, CEO of IMS Global. “We applaud OAT for showing great initiative to get EBA off the ground, and we believe the EBA will enable the alignment of business and technical strategy to drive this work forward and satisfy market needs.”
EBA officially launches at the Learning Impact Conference on May 4, 2015. Charter members include ACT, CITO, College voor Toetsen en Examens, ETS, Florida Virtual School, Houston ISD, McGraw-Hill Education, Measured Progress, Minnesota Department of Education, National Center and State Collaborative (NCSC), NWEA, Open Assessment Technologies (OAT), Pacific Metrics, PARCC, Questar, Smarter Balanced, and WIDA.
Later in May, EBA expects to elect its vice-chair, as well as approve its project plan and set key milestones for the organization. EBA is actively recruiting additional members to join the cause. For membership information or more information about the EBA, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
OAT is the publisher of TAO, the leading Open Source assessment platform for Education and Public Sector Employment. With offices in Silicon Valley and Luxembourg, OAT is working with educators and assessment professionals around the globe to develop a highly scalable, robust and secure platform that is available free of licensing fees. OAT leads the open source community to advance the TAO technology and roadmap, and sponsors the annual TAO Days user conference.
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