AIR’s Gary Phillips Offers Insights at a Race to the Top “Input Meeting” on Assessment

Washington, D.C. – Dr. Gary Phillips, a vice president and chief scientist at the American Institutes for Research (AIR), was selected by the U.S. Department of Education to participate in a Race to the Top “input meeting” designed to assist states in developing the next generation of student assessment tests.

Key experts in assessment were invited to provide their insights during the meeting in Denver, Colo., on Tuesday, December 1, 2009.

Phillips’ presentation called for fewer, clearer and higher standards in new assessment designs. He discussed three key pillars for a new assessment system – internationally benchmarked common standards, computer-adaptive tests and better measures of growth.

The Department, which has set aside up to $350 million to help states develop the new assessments, described the meeting as “an important next step in contemplating and designing a competition for these funds, and as a means of providing technical assistance to states.”

About AIR
Established in 1946, with headquarters in Washington, D.C., the American Institutes for Research (AIR) is a nonpartisan not-for-profit organization that conducts behavioral and social science research and delivers technical assistance both domestically and internationally in the areas of health, education and workforce productivity. For more information, visit

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