Keira Ballantyne currently serves as the Director of Quantitative Research Operations at CAL, where she manages the work of a team of analysts responsible for psychometric, statistical, and quantitative research analysis for CAL’s Language Assessment Division. Dr. Ballantyne holds a Ph.D. in linguistics from the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa and a B.A. (Hons) from the University of Western Australia.
Prior to her appointment at CAL, Dr. Ballantyne spent eight years with the Graduate School of Education and Human Development at The George Washington University, with the Center for Equity and Excellence in Education (GWU-CEEE) and the National Clearinghouse for English Language Acquisition, where she served first as Associate Director for Professional Development and then as Acting Director.
Dr. Ballantyne’s work has encompassed language assessment, professional development and teacher education, English learners in early childhood, academic language, high school graduation and dropout risk, and English learners with disabilities. She has presented at AERA, TESOL, NABE, and AAAL. She has worked as a teacher educator and has taught ESL in vocational and union apprenticeship programs.
This short Q&A aims to provide insight into how test development and psychometric researchers at CAL identify biased items and prevent sensitive topics from appearing on CAL’s language proficiency assessments.