Developing an Integrated Assessment and Support System For Elementary Teacher Education (DIAS)

Collaborating Institutions: 
Department of Education, University of Michigan, BEAR Center

Funded By: 
National Science Foundation

University of Michigan Participants: 
Deborah Loewenberg Ball (co-PI), Tim Boerst, Pamela A. Moss (co-PI), Annemarie Sullivan Palincsar, Laurie Sleep

BEAR Center Participants: 
Brent Duckor, Xiaoting Huang, Heeju Jang, Cathy Kennedy, Mark Wilson (co-PI)

The DIAS project is a multi-year research collaboration that aims to develop, implement, and evaluate a prototype for an integrated assessment system in elementary teacher education. We are currently focusing on mathematics, but plan to also work on English Language arts (ELA). The project focuses on three settings for initial professional development: (a) the subject matter methods course and related field instruction, (b) the student teaching semester and related seminar, and, for assessment purposes only, (c) the initial induction year.


The intended users of the data from the assessment system include student teachers, cooperating teachers, field instructors and program faculty at the University of Michigan’s School of Education. The focus of the DIAS project is on measuring both classroom and program level outcomes from an evidence-based perspective. The BEAR center is collaborating with the Michigan team in the development of progress variables, an item bank, a set of scoring procedures and the technical calibration of the prototype assessment system. The expected uses of data derived from the assessment system include: (a) supporting the development of student teachers for teaching mathematics and ELA, (b) supporting the development of the school- and university-based faculty who work with them in analyzing teaching practice and giving feedback, (c) facilitating cooperation (and common understanding) across these different communities of practice, and (d) warranting the quality of the teacher education program and the decisions made about student teachers' readiness-to-teach mathematics and ELA for accountability purposes.