News

Thursday, January 14, 2016

An updated version of KITE Client (2.1) is now available for Macintosh users. Users who experienced issues with installing KITE Client 2.0 on Macintosh computers may install this update to resolve those issues.

The update addresses permission and codesign issues experienced by some Mac users, in addition to addressing security updates recently pushed to OS X versions 10.7 and newer.

Users who did not have trouble installing KITE Client 2.0 on their Mac machine(s) may ignore this update. Additionally, no update need be made by users of KITE Client on Windows computers, iPads, and Chromebooks.

»  Download KITE Client 2.1 for Mac

 

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Dynamic Learning Maps appointed two new members to its Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) last week, bringing the committee's total appointments to nine experts in areas of assessment ranging from standard setting and validity in large-scale assessments, to accessibility in alternative assessments, to cognitive diagnostic modeling.

Russell Almond is an associate professor of measurement and statistics at Florida State University and brings with him 14 years' experience in assessment. The Harvard Ph.D. recipient has contributed award-winning original research in assessment design and  produced specialized software systems for complex assessment scoring.

Karla Egan brings several years' experience in the development of large-scale, high-stakes assessment and has conducted extensive psychometric research on multiple state-level assessment programs. A recognized expert in standard setting, Egan currently serves on a National Academy of Sciences committee that is evaluating achievement levels in national standardized assessments.

Almond and Egan will join the next TAC meeting on October 1.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The Dynamic Learning Maps™ consortium has announced members of its 2015 Technical Advisory Committee (TAC). This year’s committee includes four new and four returning members. The group will first meet on Wednesday, January 28, to discuss the topics of modeling and standard setting.

TAC members advise Dynamic Learning Maps consortium staff on a variety of topics including system design, test development, psychometric and validity research design, and interpretation of findings. Over the coming years, the TAC will advise the consortium especially on how to best present the precise evidence needed for U.S. Department of Education peer review of the Dynamic Learning Maps assessment system.

All committee members hold a Ph.D. in various areas of education and are distinguished in their fields. The committee members’ areas of expertise are several, including:

  • Cognitive diagnostic psychometrics and Bayesian network analysis
  • Implementation and review of large-scale accountability assessment
  • Accessibility and inclusion of students with significant cognitive disabilities in large-scale assessment

2015 Technical Advisory Committee members include, alphabetically:

Returning

  • Jamal Abedi, University of California–Davis
  • James Pellegrino, University of Illinois-Chicago
  • Ed Roeber, Assessment Solutions Group/Michigan Assessment Consortium
  • David Williamson, Educational Testing Service

New

  • Greg Camilli, Rutgers University
  • George Engelhard, University of Georgia
  • Gerald Tindal, University of Oregon
  • Phoebe Winter, Independent Consultant
Monday, January 12, 2015

The Lawrence Journal-World recently reported on the progress of the Dynamic Learning Maps™ project, produced by the Center for Educational Testing and Evaluation at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kan.

Currently in its fifth year, the Dynamic Learning Maps project is nearing completion.

Read the full story on the LJ World's website.

Friday, January 9, 2015

We are pleased to announce an updated release of the KITE Client that supports Apple OS X Yosemite. Additionally, this release fixes an application start up issue on Apple OS X Mavericks (10.9.5), which prevented the application from opening. Users of Yosemite and Mavericks (10.9.5) experiencing the start up issue are encouraged to install the updated KITE Client; users of other OS X versions do not need to upgrade.

To download the updated software: Download KITE Client for Mac

Friday, January 2, 2015

An updated release of the KITE Client for iPad is now available for use with DLM® assessments. This release improves the security of the testing environment and resolves several error messages. If Automatic Updates are enabled on your iPad, no action is required. If Automatic Updates are not enabled on your iPad, visit the the App Store on your iPad to download the updated client.

This update is recommended but is not required. iPad users may update at their convenience. Users of other KITE Clients (Windows, Mac, Chromebook) are not required to update.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

LAWRENCE, Kan. — The Achievement and Assessment Institute (AAI) at the University of Kansas has received a $212,000 award from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a prototype web interface that would allow students, parents, teachers and researchers to understand the relationships among mathematics topics by exploring the KU-developed Dynamic Learning Maps™ (DLM®) tool for mathematics taught in middle- and high-school grades.

The agreement extends through June 2015 and supports a cross-disciplinary team that includes the design and data-visualization expertise of Richard Branham, internationally acclaimed professor of interaction design; the math-education expertise of Angela Broaddus, AAI research associate and the learning-map expertise of Neal Kingston, professor of educational psychology and research. Kingston also serves as the project’s principal investigator.

AAI is one of six national awardees working to employ learning maps within innovative solutions for improving teaching and learning.

“Use of learning maps holds promise for enabling personalized education in ways that can dramatically improve student learning. Without user-facing spatial visualization tools, a learning map is unnavigable – it’s like attempting to read a geographic map without opening it up,” said AAI Director Kingston, who directs the DLM Alternate Assessment Consortium. “We are very excited to share the learning map with a broader audience. Since its inception, we have held the view that it has terrific potential as an educational planning tool. This partnership will support us in exploring ways to provide access to what has thus far been only available as a research tool.”

“The Institute’s excellent reputation continues to grow,” said KU Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little, “both in this country and elsewhere. Educators and policymakers need tools that guide classroom instruction and student learning in meaningful ways. AAI is creating rich support systems that will help educators meet the needs of 21st-century learners.”

Initially developed by AAI’s Center for Educational Testing and Evaluation to support the Dynamic Learning Maps™ Alternate Assessment Program, the learning map resource provides a research-based, graphical illustration of thousands of language acquisition and mathematics concepts and skills learned from birth through high school. The network display also shows the many connections between concepts and skills that promote rich understanding. Access to the map through an interface specifically designed for teachers, parents and students can effectively bridge the gap between research and practice, allowing a wider audience of practitioners and families to apply lessons learned in educational research to practical learning issues in classrooms and homes.

AAI will lead a team of experts in mathematics education, interaction design and data visualization to develop an intuitive interface for navigating and viewing the learning map. The map's refined detail will support educators in identifying critical prerequisites for topics they teach; it also will help educators diagnose the sources of students’ errors and misconceptions.

Educators, parents and students from several states will play integral roles in the process of designing an intuitive interface that meets their needs. One of their first opportunities to participate will be in focus groups, during which members of the research team will meet with small groups of teachers, parents and students to gather information about how they would be interested in using the map.

Branham said AAI’s chief design principle is to maintain focus on the intended users’ needs and interaction preferences.

“By collaborating with researchers across several disciplines and interacting with teachers, students and parents, we can solve complex human-technology problems and facilitate effective learning in a way that is engaging and fun,” he said. “We believe that this project will demonstrate the value of that approach and lead to more collaborations.”

 

Monday, October 6, 2014

The KITE Client App for iPad is now available for download from the App Store. View instructions for iPad (pdf).

For information on downloading KITE® for desktop, click here.

Monday, September 22, 2014

An updated version of the KITE Client is now available for download. All previous versions should be uninstalled before installing the updated KITE Client. To download the software, visit our KITE® Suite page.

For information about the new KITE Client for iPad, click here.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

In recent months, Education Week has published several articles that mention or highlight the Dynamic Learning Maps™ (DLM®) Alternate Assessment project, including a guest blog by Project Director Neal Kingston and a pair of stories on alternate assessment choices, implementation, and field tests.

An excerpt from Dr. Kingston’s blog:

“The concept of mass customization – the well-structured designing of flexibility into a product to allow it to meet individual needs – needs to be applied to educational assessment….In Fall 2014, the Dynamic Learning Maps Alternate Assessment, developed at the University of Kansas, will be the first operational assessment system to embody these principles to serve the learning needs of individual students.”

An excerpt from a feature that highlights DLM field tests and includes photos of teachers and students at Buhler Grade School in Buhler, Kan.:

Neal Kingston, who directs Dynamic Learning Maps, which is based at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, said that the content of the assessment is not the only piece being evaluated during the field tests: The computer software that brings the test to the students and teachers also will be under scrutiny.

“Is it truly accessible? Is it laid out in an understandable fashion?” Mr. Kingston said. “There (are) lots of accessibility issues. Sometimes we're really sure what we're looking for, and sometimes we don't know what's going to happen.”

An excerpt from a story detailing the divergent pathways taken in alternative-assessment development, including the DLM project:

Based at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Dynamic Learning Maps has devised its tests around the idea that it's possible to create an optimal map, or web, showing the many complex, interconnected ways students learn.

“We refer to it as the Human Genome Project of education,” said Neal Kingston, the project director for the DLM. Unlike most adaptive tests, which are based on item difficulty, the DLM will emphasize the “pathway” by which a specific student learns. "An item can be difficult in a lot of different ways,” said Mr. Kingston. “We're interested in the underlying skills.”

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