Our Team

Project Leadership

Neal Kingston

Principal Investigator

Dr. Kingston oversees and provides guidance on all aspects of the Enhanced Learning Maps project. He is a professor in the Educational Psychology Department at the University of Kansas and director of the Achievement and Assessment Institute. He is also a senior advisor for the Dynamic Learning Maps® Alternate Assessment Consortium. Kingston’s research focuses broadly on improving large-scale assessments so they better support student learning, especially the use of instructionally embedded, instructionally relevant assessments based on fine-grained learning map models.
Kingston received his doctorate in educational measurement and research design from Teachers College at Columbia University. Before coming to KU in 2006, Kingston was a researcher and then an executive at several educational testing companies and associate commissioner for curriculum and assessment at the Kentucky Department of Education during the early years of the Kentucky Educational Reform Act. He started his career as a high school science teacher.

Marianne Perie

Co-Principal Investigator

Dr. Perie oversees all aspects of the Enhanced Learning Maps project and supervises its day-to-day activities. She also helps the ELM team advocate for the inclusion of formative assessment as part of a balanced assessment system. Perie is director of the Center for Assessment and Accountability Research and Design and a former director of the Center for Educational Testing and Evaluation, both at the University of Kansas.
Perie has previously served as a senior associate with the National Center for the Improvement of Educational Assessment, providing technical assistance to more than 16 states and territories. Her primary research interests are in the areas of standard setting, reporting, accountability, technical documentation, and validity studies. She has more than 20 years’ experience and expertise in K–12 assessment, accountability systems, test validity evaluation, and performance standards.

Administration

Dale Cope

Project Director

Dr. Cope assists the Enhanced Learning Maps team with state partner relationships and professional development for teachers. She has extensive experience in project management and evaluation, including work on large-scale projects for universities and state education agencies. Cope earned her doctorate in educational leadership and business administration from the University of Alaska Fairbanks. She also holds a master of education degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of Puget Sound. She has worked as a high school and middle school teacher, a high school principal, and executive director for curriculum and assessment in a large urban school district. She currently works as a research director at the Center for Assessment and Accountability Research and Design.

Nancy Lister

Ms. Lister represents the Kansas State Department of Education. She works closely with the project director, project coordinator, and other project staff to monitor, manage, and document the use of funds. Lister also assists with logistics for project meetings and training events. She communicates with state representatives as needed to establish and maintain open lines of communication among state partners and the research staff. Lister holds an undergraduate degree in communications and media studies from Washburn University and a master of science in management degree from Baker University.

Kevin Liu

Mr. Liu is the primary liaison between the Kansas State Department of Education and the Center for Assessment and Accountability Research and Design. As project coordinator, he assists the project director in managing the logistics of communications and arrangements for training events, and he ensures tracking of funds for CAARD activities. Liu holds a master of business administration degree, with concentrations in international business and marketing, and a bachelor of science degree in secondary education from the University of Kansas. He has eight years’ experience at the University of Kansas Confucius Institute, four years' experience as a merchandise planner in the retail footwear and apparel industry, and four years’ experience teaching at the secondary level in Kansas.

Content Team

Kristin Joannou Lyon

Dr. Lyon is the content lead for the Enhanced Learning Maps project. She supervises and contributes to creating instructional resources based on best practices in the English language arts and mathematics portions of the learning map. She earned both her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and her master’s degree in Special Education from the University of Florida and her PhD in Special Education from the University of Kansas. She has six years of experience teaching special education, middle school mathematics, and middle school science in Florida and an international school in Beijing, China. She was an Research Associate at Illinois State University before returning to KU.

Holly Dubiel

Ms. Dubiel is a curriculum and assessment specialist for the English language arts content area, where she develops the ELA portion of the learning map model and directs the development and implementation of the ELM Student Locater Tool. She taught secondary English language arts courses for 13 years prior to joining the Center for Assessment and Accountability Research and Design. Dubiel received a bachelor’s degree in secondary language arts education and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of Kansas.

Sasha Feryok

Ms. Feryok is an assistant researcher for the Enhanced Learning Maps project. She contributes to the English language arts portion of the project by creating instructional resources based on best practices in ELA education. After graduating with a degree in education from Wichita State University, her 11-year teaching career included a variety of subjects in grades 6–8.

Nicki Lindner

Ms. Lindner is an assistant researcher for the Enhanced Learning Maps project. She contributes to the mathematics portion of the learning map model by creating instructional resources for elementary math teachers based on best practices in mathematics education. Lindner worked for eight years as an elementary teacher in Kansas, Missouri, and Colorado. She taught Pre-K, third grade, fifth grade, and sixth grade. She earned a master’s degree in elementary education from Regis University and a bachelor of arts degree from the University of Colorado.

Technology Team

James Miller

Dr. Miller advises the project leadership regarding the development of learning map visualizations and supervises the software development team. He is an associate professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the University of Kansas. Miller has active research and teaching interests in computer graphics, large-scale multidimensional and multivariate data visualization, geometric modeling, and technology in education. After receiving his doctorate, Miller spent eight years working in industry before returning to academia at KU in 1987. Miller frequently collaborates with faculty in other university departments on applications of scientific visualization. He is the chair of the eLearning Research Collaborative (eRC), a research laboratory that is pursuing interdisciplinary research related to the development of technology in education.

Dain Vermaak

Mr. Vermaak works as a web programmer on the Enhanced Learning Maps project. Vermaak will initially focus on strengthening the design of the current ELM interface, allowing it to be scaled and extended in response to future requirements. With a robust and flexible system in place, Vermaak will then work with the design team to introduce new features and present ELM’s resources in an intuitive, easily digested format. Currently a doctoral student at the University of Kansas, Vermaak earned undergraduate degrees in computer science, electrical engineering, and computer engineering from Montana State University.

Advisors

Barbara Bradley

Assistant Professor of Curriculum and Teaching, The University of Kansas

Dr. Bradley advises the Enhanced Learning Maps English language arts team on creating instructional resources that are as helpful as possible for teachers and students.

Angela Broaddus

Assistant Professor of Mathematics and Mathematics Education, Benedictine College

Dr. Broaddus advises the Enhanced Learning Maps math team on development of the mathematics portion of the learning map model and related instructional resources for teachers. Her work adapting the Dynamic Learning Maps® Alternate Assessment System’s mathematics learning map model for the general student population forms the foundation of the mathematics portion of the Enhanced Learning Maps project. She has also worked extensively on the creation of the learning map tool that the ELM project’s participating teachers use to access its map model and accompanying instructional resources.

Bruce Frey

Professor of Educational Psychology, The University of Kansas

Dr. Frey advises the Enhanced Learning Maps team on classroom assessment and analysis.

Russell Gersten

Executive Director of Instructional Research Group and Professor Emeritus, University of Oregon

Dr. Gersten advises the Enhanced Learning Maps team on instructional interventions for struggling students.

Margaret Heritage

Dr. Heritage brings to the Enhanced Learning Maps project her expertise in using learning progressions for the purpose of formative assessment. Heritage’s current work focuses on the development of language learning progressions, teachers’ use of formative assessment, and professional learning for teachers in implementing formative assessment effectively in their classrooms.

Karen Karp

Visiting Professor, Johns Hopkins University, and Professor Emeritus, University of Louisville

Dr. Karp advises on mathematics education and instructional strategies for helping students struggling to learn math. Her current scholarship focuses on teaching interventions for students in the elementary and middle grades who are struggling to learn mathematics.

Evaluation

Kimberly Good

Dr. Good uses her expertise in research and evaluation to provide formative data to support the development and implementation of the Enhanced Learning Maps project. At the project’s conclusion, she will execute a summative evaluation to gauge the success of the project in attaining its goals and to measure the project’s impact. Good earned a bachelor of arts degree in science education from the University of Northern Iowa and a master of arts degree in educational psychology from the University of South Dakota. She also holds a doctorate in educational leadership with emphases in program evaluation, measurement, and research design from Western Michigan University. She favors a multi-method, participatory approach to evaluation and employs both qualitative and quantitative evaluation methods.