Professor James Tognolini

BEd(UWA), MEd(Murdoch), PhD(Murdoch)
Director - Educational Measurement and Assessment Hub

A35 - Education Building
The University of Sydney

Telephone +61 2 86275205

Biographical details

Professor Jim Tognolini

Jim Tognolini is currently Professor and Director of the Educational Measurement and Assessment Hub at the University of Sydney and Managing Director of JT Educational Consulting Pty Ltd.

He is also Professorial Fellow at Wollongong University (Australia) and Adjunct Professor of Education at the University of Western Australia.

From 2006 to 2016 he was Senior Vice President (Research and Assessment) at Pearson and for the last 2 years of that appointment he was the Distinguished Research Scientist for the Pearson Assessment Centre (PAC).

In his current position he is responsible for establishing a Centre of Assessment and Educational Measurement at the University of Sydney.

From 2002 to 2006, Jim was Research Director (System and School Testing) at the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER).

He has extensive experience in liaising with representatives at all levels of government and educational organisations within Australia and overseas on assessment, standards and particularly the use of measurement information in informing system level planning; monitoring of standards; and, utilising data for improving school level teaching and learning.

He has given numerous keynote addresses and seminars in countries that include Singapore, Hong Kong, The United Arab Emirates, India, Jordan, New Zealand, Oman, South Africa, Indonesia, China and Thailand.

From 2079 to 2013 Jim was in residence as a Professor and Senior Research Fellow at the Oxford University Centre for Educational Assessment during part of each year and is an active participant in the workshop programme of the Centre.

Jim Tognolini has been responsible for establishing assessment Centres at the University of New South Wales (The Educational Testing Centre); Oxford University (The Oxford University Centre for Educational Assessment); the University of Western Australia (The Pearson Psychometric Laboratory); The Government of India (The Centre for Assessment, Evaluation and Research (CAER)); The Government of the United Arab Emirates (The Centre for Educational Testing, Measurement and Evaluation (CETME)). He has been a previous Chair and still a member of the BOSTES HSC Consultative Committee and is also on its Technical Advisory Committee.

Research interests

My specialist research and educational evaluation work focuses primarily on educational assessment and the application and appropriateness of measurement models and theoretical perspectives to education and learning in both local and international contexts.

Much of my inquiry and professional work has pursued five major themes: (1) the refinement and application of Rasch Models to the assessment of social outcomes of education; (2) developing quality assurance measures in systems that require the collation of different forms of evidence; (3) equating stability in educational measurement; (4) standards referencing, using measurement to establish and validate standards (5) developing innovative assessments and measures for monitoring growth, teacher effectiveness and system level performance against pre-determined developmental continua.

Most recently, my research activity has been focussed upon developing models and procedures to support the international monitoring of educational outcomes through system-wide, school-level programs. System-wide testing has become an important feature of most education systems around the world and there is an increasing demand for comparative analysis and psychometric research which balances the situational and cultural factors with measurement theory and protocols.

In parallel with system-wide assessment, I have been increasingly involved in designing ways to help educational leaders of school systems, schools and parents understand and interpret data in ways that are meaningful, fair and sensible. The models and theoretical perspectives of psychometrics have increasingly been relied on for these purposes.

Against this background, a significant amount of my time has been spent in researching and advising senior educationalists and policy makers around the world on these issues. For example, I have been responsible for developing a Centre for Assessment, Evaluation and Research (CAER) for the Government of India under a PPP between the Pearson Foundation and the Human Resource and Development Ministry of the Government of India.

I have also been the Project Director for the Review of the National Testing Strategy and Assessment System for Basic and Secondary Education for the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan; Special Advisor for the National Assessment of Student Achievement Project (NASAP), United Arab Emirates Ministry of Education; Project Director for the United Arab Emirates National Aptitude Testing Project for University Entrance, United Arab Emirates Ministry of Education; Senior Advisor for establishing standards for national testing in China, National Education and Examiners Authority of China; Senior Researcher for developing banks of calibrated test items for the Ministry of Education in Indonesia; and Project Director for a project to examine the variability of standards reference assessment for the New Zealand Qualifications Authority.

In addition, I have conducted a policy review for the Curriculum Council in Western Australia and produced a report entitled ?Meeting the Challenge of Assessing in a Standards Based System?

Over the years, I have been the senior advisor on educational measurement issues for every State and Territory Education Department and Examination Board in Australia and New Zealand.

An area of particular interest is developing teachers? assessment skills to enable them to deliver the assessment reforms that are being mandated in countries around the world.

Conference presentations

Tognolini, J.  “Using Measurement Theory in Practice to Improve the Validity of High Stakes Examinations.”  Invited paper presented to the NSW Board of Studies Supervisors of Marking Conference, May 2005, Sydney.

Tognolini, J.  “Standards-referenced Assessment: A tool and means to the development of human capital and capacity building in education”. Paper given at the Asia Pacific Education Conference (APEC) “East Meets West Colloquium”, 2005, Kuala Lumpur.

Tognolini,   J.Ways in which the effectiveness of the national assessments and the national final examinations (Tawjihi) might be enhanced”. Discussion paper prepared for the Ministry of Education of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, 2006, Jordan.

Tognolini,   J. “How teachers can use assessment information that they have gathered to improve student learning outcomes” Key note address at the 2006 Executive Administrators of Independent Schools Conference, May 2006, Sydney.

Tognolini, J. “International Testing: What purpose does it serve?” Keynote address at the 2006 Association of Australian International Baccalaureate Schools (AAIBS) Asia Pacific Conference. June 2006, Gold Coast, Australia.

Stanley, G. and Tognolini, J. “Performance with Respect to Standards in Public Examinations” Paper presented at the 2008 International Association of Educational Assessment (IAEA) at Cambridge, October, 2008.

Tognolini, J. “"Effective school leaders use data effectively: How to base decisions on assessment data" Key note address at the Inspiring Teachers-Aspiring Leaders Conference at Wollongong New South Wales, February 2010.

Tognolini, J. and Stanley, G. “How Can We Validate Educational Outcomes When Reported in Terms of Standards”. Paper presented to the 7th ICE Conference, INEAG, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Samos, Greece, 7 July 2011.

Wong, M.Y.W., Mok, M.M.C., Yao, J., Paris, S.G., Stanley, G. and Tognolini, J. “Differences in the Perception of Feedback between Hong Kong Primary School Students and their Teachers.” Paper presented to the Pacific Rim Objective Measurement Symposium (PROMS), Jiaxing University, Jiaxing China, 5-11August 2012.

Tognolini, J.S. – “Setting Quality Multiple Choice Items”. Presentation at CSSA 2013 HSC Trial Exams Forum, 14 September 2012

Paris, S.G., Stanley, G., and Tognolini, J. “Psychometric Properties of the Instructional Feedback Scale for Primary Students Using the Rasch Measurement Model.” Paper presented to 10th Cross Strait Conference of Psychological and Educational Testing, Jiangxi Normal University, Nanchang China, 22-23 September 2012.

Tognolini, J.S. “Global Trends in Large Scale Assessments”. Keynote Address, CBSE-CAER International Conference 2014.

Tognolini, J.S. – “Developing Quality Multiple Choice Questions”. Presentation at CSSA 2015 HSC Trial Exams Forum, 16 October 2014

Tognolini, James S. “Design and Development of Large-Scale Learning Assessments.” Presentation at Capacity Development Workshop for UNESCO Bangkok’s Network on Education Quality Monitoring in the Asia Pacific (NEQMAP), Bangkok, Thailand, 16-20 March 2015.

Tognolini, J.S. “Assessing the Performance of Teachers.” Presentation at Teacher Policy Forum for Asian Development Bank’s  Analytical and Capacity Development Partnership (ACDP), Jakarta, 5-6 August 2015.

Tognolini, J.S. “Quality Assessment of Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Skills”. Presentation at Guangdong Academy of Education, Dongguan,China, 22-26 September 2015.

Tognolini, J.S. – “Validity of Measurement of the Performance Achievement Levels/Bands”. Presentation at CSSA 2016 HSC Trial Exams Forum, 9 October 2015.

Tognolini, J.S. – “Educational Assessment and Psychometrics”. Two 10 day workshops for Indonesian Education Ministry to groups of Indonesian Teacher Educators, Sydney, 2-27 November 2015.

Tognolini, J.S. “Developing proficiency, test and assessment standards to accommodate 21st Century reforms in China”. Presentation at Shenzhen Academy of Education, Shenzhen, China, 8-10 December 2015.

Tognolini, J.S. Presentation at Guangzhou Academy of Education “Validating standards for measuring cognitive and non-cognitive skills in China”, 11 December 2015.

Tognolini, J.S. – “Principals: Unlocking the Power of Assessment”. Presentation to Principals in Chandigarh, India, for The Centre for Assessment, Measurement & Research (CAMR), via Webex, 17 January 2016.

Tognolini, J.S. “Capacity building workshop: Student learning assessment and international monitoring of student performance”. Presentation to the Secondary Examinations Board of the Government on Bhutan for UNESCO at Paro, Bhutan from 25-27 April 2016.

Tognolini, J.S. “Global Trends in Assessment” Large Scale, high stakes assessment programs” National Testing”. Presentations to Omani Ministry of Education, Oman, 22-26 May 2016

Tognolini, J.S. “Introduction to the elements of modern assessment theory”. Presentation to the Haidian District of Beijing, 21 June 2016.

Tognolini, J.S. “Assessing higher order thinking in a standards-referenced system”. Presentation to the Beijing Education Academy, China, 20 – 22 June 2016.

Selected publications & creative works

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Book Chapters

  • Tognolini, J., Davidson, M. (2013). Assessment, standards-referencing and standard setting. In M. M. C. Mok (Eds.), Self-directed learning oriented assessments in the Asia-Pacific, (pp. 23-41). Dordrecht: Springer.
  • Brown, I., Lockyer, L., Caputi, P., Tognolini, J. (2010). Multimodality, multiliteracy and visual literacy: Where does assessment fit? In M. Avgerinou, R. E. Griffin & P. Search (Eds.), Critically engaging the digital learner in visual worlds and virtual environments, (pp. 71-78). Loretto, PA: International Visual Literacy Association.

Journals

  • Ehrich, J., Howard, S., Tognolini, J., Bokosmaty, S. (2015). Measuring attitudes toward plagiarism: Issues and psychometric solutions. Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education, 7(2), 243-257. [More Information]
  • Mok, M., Wong, M., Su, M., Tognolini, J., Stanley, G. (2014). Personal best goal and self-regulation as predictors of mathematics achievement: A multilevel structural equation model. Asia Pacific Journal of Educational Development, 3(1), 79-91. [More Information]
  • Bennett, J., Tognolini, J., Pickering, S. (2012). Establishing and applying performance standards for curriculum-based examinations. Assessment in Education: Principles, Policy and Practice, 19(3), 321-339. [More Information]
  • Tognolini, J., Stanley, G. (2010). Standards-referenced assessment: A tool and means to the development of human capital and capacity building in education. Examinations Research (Journal of Tianjin Municipal Educational Admission and Examinations Authority in China), 2010 (2), 4-20.
  • Sadeghi, R., Tognolini, J. (2007). Does the Rasch Model work for equating? Journal of Iranian Psychologists, 1(3), 12-28.
  • Tognolini, J., Stanley, G. (2007). Standards-based assessment a tool and means to the development of capital and capacity building in education. Australian Journal of Education, 51(2), 129-145.
  • Tognolini, J., Stanley, G. (2007). Standards-based assessment: A tool and means to the development of human capital and capacity building in education. Australian Journal of Education, 51(2), 129-145. [More Information]

Conferences

  • Twing, J., Tognolini, J. (2014). Most measures are still uncommon: The need for comparability. 40th Annual Conference of the International Association for Educational Assessment - Assessment Innovations for the 21st Century, Singapore: International Association for Educational Assessment (IAEA). [More Information]
  • Tognolini, J. (2005). Using online assessment to inform teaching and learning in primary and secondary classrooms. ACER Research Conference 2005, Melbourne. [More Information]

Research Reports

  • Tognolini, J., Twing, J. (2013). Normalization of the Joint Institute of Technology Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) and State Specific Institutes of Technology (IITs) for selection when assumptions are violated, Report for the Central Board of Secondary Education & Centre for Assessment, Evaluation and Research, India: .
  • Masters, G., Forster, M., Matters, G., Tognolini, J. (2006). Australian Certificate of Education: Exploring a way forward, Report produced for the Department of Education, Science and Training of the Australian Government, Australia: Australian Council for Educational Research. [More Information]
  • Tognolini, J. (2006). Meeting the challenge of assessing in a standards based system, Australia: School Curriculum and Standards Authority, WA. [More Information]
  • Tognolini, J. (2005). Benchmarks revisited: Using alternative measures to estimate percentages achieving benchmark in numeracy and reading, Report for the New South Wales Department of Education and Training, Australia: ACER.
  • Tognolini, J. (2005). UAE National Aptitude Test Item Bank Project: A literature review, Report prepared for the UAE Ministry of Education. Dubai, United Arab Emirates: .
  • Tognolini, J. (2005). Variability of standards referenced assessment consultancy, Report for the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA), Wellington, New Zealand: .

2015

  • Ehrich, J., Howard, S., Tognolini, J., Bokosmaty, S. (2015). Measuring attitudes toward plagiarism: Issues and psychometric solutions. Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education, 7(2), 243-257. [More Information]

2014

  • Twing, J., Tognolini, J. (2014). Most measures are still uncommon: The need for comparability. 40th Annual Conference of the International Association for Educational Assessment - Assessment Innovations for the 21st Century, Singapore: International Association for Educational Assessment (IAEA). [More Information]
  • Mok, M., Wong, M., Su, M., Tognolini, J., Stanley, G. (2014). Personal best goal and self-regulation as predictors of mathematics achievement: A multilevel structural equation model. Asia Pacific Journal of Educational Development, 3(1), 79-91. [More Information]

2013

  • Tognolini, J., Davidson, M. (2013). Assessment, standards-referencing and standard setting. In M. M. C. Mok (Eds.), Self-directed learning oriented assessments in the Asia-Pacific, (pp. 23-41). Dordrecht: Springer.
  • Tognolini, J., Twing, J. (2013). Normalization of the Joint Institute of Technology Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) and State Specific Institutes of Technology (IITs) for selection when assumptions are violated, Report for the Central Board of Secondary Education & Centre for Assessment, Evaluation and Research, India: .

2012

  • Bennett, J., Tognolini, J., Pickering, S. (2012). Establishing and applying performance standards for curriculum-based examinations. Assessment in Education: Principles, Policy and Practice, 19(3), 321-339. [More Information]

2010

  • Brown, I., Lockyer, L., Caputi, P., Tognolini, J. (2010). Multimodality, multiliteracy and visual literacy: Where does assessment fit? In M. Avgerinou, R. E. Griffin & P. Search (Eds.), Critically engaging the digital learner in visual worlds and virtual environments, (pp. 71-78). Loretto, PA: International Visual Literacy Association.
  • Tognolini, J., Stanley, G. (2010). Standards-referenced assessment: A tool and means to the development of human capital and capacity building in education. Examinations Research (Journal of Tianjin Municipal Educational Admission and Examinations Authority in China), 2010 (2), 4-20.

2007

  • Sadeghi, R., Tognolini, J. (2007). Does the Rasch Model work for equating? Journal of Iranian Psychologists, 1(3), 12-28.
  • Tognolini, J., Stanley, G. (2007). Standards-based assessment a tool and means to the development of capital and capacity building in education. Australian Journal of Education, 51(2), 129-145.
  • Tognolini, J., Stanley, G. (2007). Standards-based assessment: A tool and means to the development of human capital and capacity building in education. Australian Journal of Education, 51(2), 129-145. [More Information]

2006

  • Masters, G., Forster, M., Matters, G., Tognolini, J. (2006). Australian Certificate of Education: Exploring a way forward, Report produced for the Department of Education, Science and Training of the Australian Government, Australia: Australian Council for Educational Research. [More Information]
  • Tognolini, J. (2006). Meeting the challenge of assessing in a standards based system, Australia: School Curriculum and Standards Authority, WA. [More Information]

2005

  • Tognolini, J. (2005). Benchmarks revisited: Using alternative measures to estimate percentages achieving benchmark in numeracy and reading, Report for the New South Wales Department of Education and Training, Australia: ACER.
  • Tognolini, J. (2005). UAE National Aptitude Test Item Bank Project: A literature review, Report prepared for the UAE Ministry of Education. Dubai, United Arab Emirates: .
  • Tognolini, J. (2005). Using online assessment to inform teaching and learning in primary and secondary classrooms. ACER Research Conference 2005, Melbourne. [More Information]
  • Tognolini, J. (2005). Variability of standards referenced assessment consultancy, Report for the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA), Wellington, New Zealand: .

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