The RAD Science team and its affiliates utilize evidence-centered design, state-of-the-art science, multidisciplinary practices, engaging content and interfaces, and modeling appropriate cognitive and noncognitive skills in our work to enhance self-awareness and grow global citizens.
RAD Science organizational offerings are described in detail in the passages that follow. But please do read beyond this; it so much more than words, sound bites, or shallow promises.
SUMMARY OF OFFERINGS
An ever-expanding empirically tagged bank of social and emotional learning (SEL) items, measures of important cross-cutting competencies (e.g., critical thinking, emotional intelligence), and even a small suite of cognitive assessments. Notably, these measures are both commercial and open-source. And where we have gathered validity evidence, the assessments are supported with brief technical bulletins.
Comprehensive SEL assessment batteries using multiple innovative methods feeding into the score for any measured construct. The expansive pool of RAD Science-owned items allows rapid customization to individual sectors, including prototype assessments for high-school and college students, correctional education and re-entry programs, individuals entering the workforce, teachers, and the capacity to modify those for a chosen profession.
Score-reports for the individual, institution, and other key stake-holders (for example, in education, for parents, teachers, and administrators).
Intervention tools aligned with feedback, providing tips, strategies, and exercises, and pointing to role models from history, the entertainment world, arts and the sciences.
Research and Development
Basic and applied research, particularly in the areas of social and emotional learning, workforce readiness, and cross-cutting skills.
Consultancy services via RAD Science staff, each of whom has an expansive track record of conducting both basic and applied scientific and policy research for major organizations while in prior roles. A selection of these include, Army Research Institute, Australian Research Council, Agencia de Calidad de la Educación, Bloomberg, Carnegie Corporation of New York, Coalition of Adult Basic Education, Correctional Education Association, Educational Testing Service, High Quality Assessment Project, Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity, Raikes Foundation, The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Pearson, Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, Smarter Balanced, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, University of Phoenix, and WK Kellogg.
Organization of topical convenings at the local, national, and international levels. RAD Science staff has extensive experience in organizing national and global conferences for a variety of constituencies.
RAD Science staff has experience in developing or co-developing multijurisdictional standards while at other organizations. These include the Model Code of Ethics for Educators (for NASDTEC), the Teacher Leadership Initiative Competencies (for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards and the NEA), the Teacher Leader Model Standards (for the Teacher Leader Exploratory Consortium), and others. Using Evidence Centered Design methodology, RAD Science staff has worked with educators and stakeholders directly to develop standards for clients.
The co-founders of RAD Science are committed to providing back to the scientific, policy, and educator communities. To this end, one of our services is a suite of working papers, designed to tackle concepts and issues that we trust educators, decision-makers, and scientists will find useful. RAD Science also disseminates information to the community via social media, especially Linked-In and our twitter feed.
The co-founders of RAD Science dedicate a significant portion of their time giving back to organizations and causes important to them. Examples include: Association of Test Publishers, Covenant House, Goodwill, and to teacher- and student-based organizations and individual classrooms nationwide.
RAD Science has deep connections in the education and workforce communities. These networks allow us to simultaneously:
A. Develop state-of-the-art assessments and standards;
B. Conduct research from literature review to cognitive lab to major field studies; and
C. Expand intervention tools towards curriculum, quickly, and efficiently.
We are joined by an outstanding global team of academicians and practitioners, providing services that include research, psychometrics, and scoring expertise.
True collaboration from go to whoa.
Social and Emotional Skills Assessments
While RAD Science possesses the expertise to develop assessments in virtually any domain, its initial product offering targets noncognitive, personal or what many experts now prefer to call social and emotional learning (SEL) skills. Both science and evidence-based practice suggest five particularly important SEL skills that can be developed to ensure success in school, college, the workplace, and everyday life.
The five factors are (market-facing label first, scientific terminology second):
- Work Ethic/Conscientiousness: How hard you work, plan and get things done;
- Teamwork/Agreeableness: How much you care about others and like to be part of a team;
- Stress Tolerance/Emotional Stability: How tolerant you are of stress and remain composed even when things appear to be going against you;
- Curiosity/Openness: How curious you are, how open you are to new ideas, and seek creative outlets; and
- Communication Style/Extraversion: How sociable and communicative you generally are.
SELF+eTM (Social and Emotional Learning Factors + enhancements), an on-line tool makes use of three different assessment methods: Self-report, forced-choice, and situational judgment. Currently, SELF+e has offerings in the following domains:
A) Middle and High School
D) Adult Education
E) Educator (inclusive both of teachers and administrators)
We are currently piloting each of these versions of SELF+e, in both domestic and international markets.
Operational assessments are planned to be available the first quarter of 2019. Additional information describing general features of the SELF+e product family and how they are differentiated from other products measuring these skills is available on our facts sheet. We are developing technical bulletins on each assessment.
Cross-Cutting Competence Assessments
We have developed prototype assessments in these domains:
A. Financial Literacy
C. Critical Thinking
D. Cross-Cultural Competence
E. Emotional Intelligence (the actual pictured item represents an early multimedia version, which we aim to extend in the future)
The cross-cutting competence assessments will be available between Fall 2019 and early 2020 as additional RAD Science offerings. In these domains, we are partnering with organizations to fund research and development.
Interest is a construct that research shows typically can provide useful information to compliment cognitive test performance, SEL skills, and cross-cutting competencies. Indeed, it is considered important enough to be part of the Department of Labor’s O*Net classification scheme, with open-source self-report assessments such as the one pictured available to the end user.
As for SEL skills, we question the veracity of self-report only assessment of vocational interest. To this end, RAD Science has developed a unique, proprietary assessment of vocational interests, based on a combination of self-report, forced-choice, and situational judgment. The interest assessment launch is planned for the second quarter of 2019. A theory of action, informational materials and requisite studies establishing the psychometric properties of this unique assessment system are also in development.
RAD Science staff are available for consultation in a variety of different domains of expertise: Research and development of virtually any psychometric tool, standards setting, psychometrics, business development (especially in adult education, teaching, and corrections). If this is of interest to you, or your organization, please contact Katherine Bassett: [email protected]
RAD Science is actively engaged in disseminating new information to the field, via the following three media:
A. Publications. That is, the typical peer-review scientific process. We continue to publish extensively on SEL, cognitive biases and heuristics, chronotype, emotional intelligence, human cognitive abilities, and emerging technologies. Our latest in press papers examine the forced-choice and situational judgement test paradigms described in the section on SELF+e. Another, under review, offers an entirely new paradigm for the assessment of these skills. Watch this space for regular updates!
B. Working Papers and Technical Bulletins. A new series of working papers and technical bulletins that you can only find on this web site. Below you will find our initial offerings in these domains.
C. Social Media. See the LinkedIn pages of each of the co-founders, who regularly post on a wide range of topics. We will also be making posts that have gained attention available as downloads.
In addition, RAD Science has a twitter handle. Follow us on Twitter @radscience2.
Working Paper 2018-1
The first of these, co-authored by the three co-founders — “Towards a Shared Assessment Lexicon” — simply establishes a lexicon by which clients, partners, policy makers, and academic affiliates can engage in meaningful and shared dialogue. Having worked collectively for over five decades in the assessment industry, we are convinced this can be a valuable resource that disambiguates the ambiguous and otherwise establishes a sound basis for working meaningfully in the field.
Working Paper 2018-2
The second of these working papers, authored by Roberts – “SEL Skills: Science and Myth” – examines the evidence for various claims that we suspect affect the way the field is viewed. We explore what we see as extant myths, often held up as facts, through the lens of science and propose a viable alternative.
We will add to this working paper series, sometimes with our academic affiliates as authors or co-authors, but also to these first two papers in the series. (A working paper by Riker and Roberts on the role of SEL measures and interventions for individuals re-entering the workforce from corrections is currently in preparation). We encourage your feedback both on the substance and tenor of these working papers, and where appropriate may even bring readers, who would then become collaborators, onboard as co-authors.
Despite having built a slew of commercial products and services over the years, RAD Science staff has also been committed to developing open-source assessments for the scientific community. We aim to provide you with new information and source materials should a topic/construct appear of relevance. These are distilled in what we are calling our open-source assessment technical bulletins. Currently, we are releasing the first of these — The Lark-Owl Chronotype Indicator (LOCI), a measure of morningness-eveningness — as a proof-of-concept of this unique service. Inside the bulletin we not only provide the assessment for your use in your research, but several translations, additional information on validity evidence, and other psychometric characteristics.
As for our working paper series, we add to each open-source technical bulletin and to papers in the series. We appreciate feedback both on the substance and tenor of these bulletins and should you either be interested in working on further studies, or even consider commercializing one or more of these assessments please contact RAD Science at [email protected] or [email protected]
Social Media: Blog Posts
We will be reproducing some of our blog posts here.
Our first entitled — Science and Myth of Noncognitive Assessment: Act I, Scene I — starts off as follows.
What’s in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other word would smell as sweet
Romeo and Juliet, Act II, Scene ii
Is finding the consensual name for noncognitive skills (which I take to mean anything not assessed by traditional cognitive skills), worth the frequent air time it is given in media articles, blog posts, tweets, even published academic papers?
At the risk of being labelled a wanton hypocrite: I think not. But this is a cyclical event in my business-academic life, almost as consistent across the past two decades as the passing of time; the four seasons year after year. And in the interests of advancing the field, I really do hope it can stop.
You can click the download link for the full post if the introduction has spurned your interest.