This is part of the work I have done on learning and assessment as part of the Edmund Gordon Fellows program that I directed for the MacArthur Foundation.
Both our assessments and tests and our research on assessments and tests have not kept pace with ongoing modern research on the human mind and human learning. Too often we do not know who we are assessing when we assess students today. A student is not just a data point. Rather a student is a complex body of experience gained over (long periods of) time, stored in mind in different ways, and recruited as a source of hypotheses, meaning making, and planning when the student needs to act, learn, or take a test. If we want to render assessments fair, useful, and meaningful—if we want to be able to act intelligently on their outcomes—we need to see that we should be assessing bodies of experience and judging how they can be used now and in the future for better learning and development and what new experiences the student needs for future growth and the building of new capacities.