Carla Evans is a Senior Associate at the National Center for the Improvement of Educational Assessment (Center for Assessment). She is actively engaged with projects that attempt to bridge the gap between classroom assessment and large-scale assessment. Carla supports states in designing and implementing innovative assessment and accountability reforms, especially those that rely on performance assessments. She is also working in multiple states to support the design and implementation of balanced assessment systems with a particular focus on scaling and sustaining assessment literacy initiatives with K-12 teachers and school/district leaders.

Carla’s research focuses on the impacts and implementation of assessment and accountability policies on teaching and learning. Carla is interested in policy research related to innovative assessment and accountability systems, culturally responsive assessment, competency-based education, performance-based assessments, and assessment literacy. She is also an advisor to CCSSO's student-centered learning collaborative.

Carla has published numerous articles in peer-reviewed journals and regularly presents her research at the American Educational Research Association (AERA), National Council for Measurement in Education (NCME), and the National Conference on Student Assessment (NCSA). Carla is also a frequent blogger on the Center's website ( and has created a set of open-source Classroom Assessment Literacy modules (

Carla received a Ph.D. from the University of New Hampshire with a concentration in Assessment, Evaluation, and Policy. She was awarded numerous honors, including AERA Division H’s Outstanding Dissertation Award, UNH Dissertation Year Fellowship, UNH Graduate Research Assistantships, and UNH Education Department Outstanding Graduate Student Paper Award. Carla was recently awarded AERA Classroom Assessment SIGs Emerging Scholar in Classroom Assessment Award. Carla began her career as an elementary classroom teacher for almost a decade.

Recent and Relevant Publications

Evans, C. M. (2023). Applying a Contrasting Groups Standard Setting Methodology to a Large-Scale Performance Assessment Program Used for Accountability. Practical Assessment, Research, and Evaluation, 28(1).

Wellberg, S. & Evans, C. M. (2022). Assumptions Underlying Performance Assessment Reforms Intended to Improve Instructional Practices: A Research-Based Framework. Practical Assessment, Research, and Evaluation, 27(23).

Evans, C. M., Thompson, J., & Landl, E. (2020). Making sense of K-12 competency-based education: A systematic literature review of implementation and outcomes research from 2000 to 2019. Journal of Competency-Based Education, 5(4).

Evans, C. M., Graham, S., & Lefebvre, M. (2019). Exploring K-12 competency-based education implementation in the Northeast states. NASSP Bulletin.

Evans, C.M.(2019). Effects of New Hampshire’s innovative assessment and accountability system on student achievement outcomes after 3 years. Educational Policy Analysis Archives

Evans, C.M., & Lyons, S. (2017). Comparability in balanced assessment systems for state accountability. Educational Measurement: Issues and Practice. Educational Measurement: Issues and Practice.

Blog Posts Authored by Carla Evans

2021 Summer Internships: The Future Is Now

Center Staff and Interns Look Toward the Future of Educational Assessment and Accountability As it appears the country is finally turning the corner on the pandemic, we are excited at the prospect of …

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Keeping up the PACE

Evaluating Grade 8 Student Achievement Outcomes for the NH PACE Program, an Innovative Assessment System This is the third in a series of posts by our 2020 summer interns and their mentors b…

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