Designing with the ends in mind
Data systems and their users
Edwards, S., Hall, L., & Levesque, K. (2008). Designing with the ends in mind: Data systems and their users. In 2008 NCES Summer Data Conference, July 30 - August 1, 2008, Bethesda, MD http://nces.ed.gov/whatsnew/conferences/statsdc/2008/session_I.asp
At their best, longitudinal student data systems benefit a variety of audiences, from educators to policymakers. Analyses of student data can inform decisions about state policy, district priorities, and teacher practice. But the ultimate usefulness of these systems requires that designers at the state level engage their users from the beginning, to solicit input, cultivate support, and to begin to educate users about how to best use the system. Presenters described the efforts seven states have made to involve end-users in system development, with a particular focus on California.