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California Community Colleges Common Assessment InitiativeThe California Community Colleges (CCC) Common Assessment Initiative (CAI) is seeking volunteers to participate in a work group that will focus on delivery of the new assessment tool being created exclusively for the CCC.


The first meeting of the Platform & Administration Work Group is Aug. 27 in San Diego. If you are interested in sharing your opinions and influencing the outcome of the new common assessment system, contact CAI immediately.

Insight is needed from those responsible for administration, set-up, scoring and reporting of assessments, according to John Hadad, Product Manager for the CAI, which is collaborating with Unicon to develop the new platform.

“We are building a new system from the ground up,” Hadad said. “The work group will influence how this state-of-the-art assessment system works and behaves—the user experience. The end result will be an assessment tool used by the largest college system in the country.”

Wide Range Of Viewpoints

There are 12 colleges that will be piloting the new system before it is rolled out across the state. Representation from those colleges, and others in their districts, would be especially helpful to this Platform & Administration Work Group, Hadad noted.

In addition, the work group is seeking participation from colleges that are not part of the pilot. Those who currently interact with their existing community college assessment system could add value to the work group.

“We need people representing a variety of assessment roles from proctoring to management and administration,” Hadad said. “If you have a student worker who could represent both the student and the assessment office experience, he or she would also be a welcome addition to the group.”

Those who currently administer and proctor pencil and paper assessments would provide a useful perspective, according to Hadad. “We are also looking for work group participants from disability offices that administer assessments with the capability for accommodation,” he said.

IT, Research Insights Needed

From information technology departments, the CAI Platform & Administration Work Group needs representation from colleges that have a variety of Student Information Systems, particularly PeopleSoft.

“Staff members who know what needs to happen from an IT perspective could help identify capabilities and restrictions, and come up with ways to overcome obstacles,” Hadad said.

In the research area, Hadad is seeking those who can help redefine what the next generation of assessment will look like. “We need to know what is required to enhance the way researchers can analyze the data and validate the assessment,” he said.

Participation Details

Work group members are asked to commit for a minimum of one year. The work group currently meets in person every four to six weeks, rotating between San Diego, Orange County and Sacramento. The meetings are generally held from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The frequency of the meetings is expected to decrease to every four to eight weeks.

Participants are reimbursed for travel expenses. Because in-person meetings make it easier to collaborate, work group members are encouraged to travel to the meetings. Occasionally it may be necessary to video conference into the meeting.

If you are interested in learning more about how you can become involved in this work group and impact a system that will touch nearly every California community college student, improving their college experience, contact John Hadad at 530-413-8583 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Call today because the workgroup meets on Aug. 27.

To learn more about the CAI, visit the initiative website at

Karen Fraser-Middleton is a marketing consultant for the
California Community Colleges Common Assessment Initiative