ACT Senior Vice President, Alina von Davier, PhD., leads ACTNext, a multidisciplinary innovation unit founded in 2016 by ACT CEO Marten Roorda. Her team is comprised of experts in fields ranging from psychometrics and learning sciences to software development, and artificial intelligence (AI) & machine learning (ML). Von Davier and her team operate at the forefront of Computational Psychometrics, an emerging interdisciplinary field concerned with the application of theoretical and data-driven computational methods and statistical modeling of multimodal, large scale/high dimensional learning and assessment data. This unique approach allows von Davier and her colleagues at ACTNext to not only develop innovative solutions to challenging problems, but to change the very ways in which assessment is traditionally thought of. Her current research interests involve developing and adapting methodologies in support of learning in virtual environments that allow for collaboration using techniques incorporating machine learning, data mining, Bayesian inference methods, and stochastic processes.
Two publications, a co-edited volume on Computerized Multistage Testing (2014) and an edited volume on test equating, Statistical Models for Test Equating, Scaling, and Linking (2011) were selected as the winners of the Division D Significant Contribution to Educational Measurement and Research Methodology award at American Educational Research Association (AERA). Additionally, she has written and/or co-edited five other books and volumes on statistic and psychometric topics. She has received significant grants and contracts as a Principal Investigator; funding sources have included the National Science Foundation, the Spencer Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation, the US Army Medical Research, and the Army Research Institute.
Prior to leading ACTNext, von Davier was a senior research director at Educational Testing Service (ETS) where she led the Computational Psychometrics Research Center. Previously, she led the Center for Psychometrics for International Tests, where she was responsible for both the psychometrics in support of international tests, TOEFL® and TOEIC®, and the scores reported to millions of test takers annually.
Von Davier is currently an adjunct professor at Fordham University and the vice president of the International Association of Computerized Adaptive Testing (IACAT). She currently serves on the board of directors for the Association of Test Publishers (ATP), and she is also a member of the board of directors for Smart Sparrow and of the advisory board for Duolingo.
She earned her doctorate in mathematics from Otto von Guericke University of Magdeburg, Germany, and her master of science degree in mathematics from the University of Bucharest, Romania.
Contact: Alina.vonDavier (at) act.org