Today, edCount, LLC hosted its first interactive web conference for education stakeholders. The webinar, entitled “Making Tests Fair for English Language Learners,” featured two presenters from the Educational Testing Service (ETS). Using a recently developed set of guidelines from ETS, they discussed key issues in the assessment of ELLs, with a special focus on appropriate methodology for determining an assessment’s validity and fairness.

Presenters Maria Martiniello and Mary J. Pitoniak each presented important points in achieving fair and valid testing of ELL students. They then jointly fielded audience questions for the event’s conclusion. Martiniello is an Associate Research Scientist at ETS who serves as leader of the English as a Second Language sub-initiative under ETS Research & Development’s Strategic Initiative of English Language Learning. Pitoniak is a Lead Program Administrator in the Research & Development Division at ETS who also serves as the Associate Project Director for Research and Development for the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). Both have conducted research within and outside of ETS regarding ELL assessment, specifically relating to item performance with ELL students.

The event was attended by over 80 education stakeholders representing state and local education agencies, institutes of higher education, and regional comprehensive centers. A copy of the guidelines can be downloaded from the ETS website at any time, here

edCount is grateful to our presenters for working with us to host this event, and looks forward to hosting more discussions of this nature in the future.