The Technical Design Group Analyses of Four API Issues

February 05, 2014

The Technical Design Group (TDG) is a committee that works closely with the California Department of Education (CDE) and also with the PSAA Advisory Committee (see, offering psychometric and statistical advice concerning California’s school accountability systems. This talk includes a brief overview of California’s Academic Performance Index (API), followed by discussion of four issues the TDG has wrestled with over the past couple of years. These issues highlight some intersections of statistical questions with “end user” assumptions and expectations, and also illustrate how statistical choices give rise to various incentives and disincentives for actors within the system. The four issues are (1) how to introduce the High School Graduation Rate into the API, (2) how to construct some alternative to the current API-based school decile rankings, (3) whether to maintain a high school API for 2014-15 despite greatly reduced student testing, and (4) how to incorporate some kind of college and career readiness indicator into the high school API. - See more at: