Cyndie Schmeiser Named as College Board’s Chief of Assessment

NEW YORK — The College Board today announced that beginning April 15, Cyndie Schmeiser will join the organization as its chief of assessment. Schmeiser, who has been a leader in assessment design for nearly four decades, most recently served as the president and COO of ACT’s Education Division. In that role, she was responsible for leading and coordinating the research, development, marketing, sales and client support of all assessment instruments associated with ACT’s education programs. 

“There is simply no one whom I admire more in the field of assessment than Cyndie,” said College Board President David Coleman. “In her role as chief of assessment, Cyndie will play a leading role in delivering the next generation of assessments to improve education and better serve our students.”

Schmeiser’s commitment to using solid data to inform decision making was demonstrated in her contributions to the Common Core State Standards. Throughout the process, she was a strong advocate for the important role the evidence of what matters most for college and career readiness needed to play in developing these standards. In her time at ACT, Schmeiser oversaw several seminal policy reports that used data to illuminate key issues in reading, standards, and middle school performance.  

In her role at the College Board, Schmeiser will oversee programs including the SAT®, the PSAT/NMSQT®, ACCUPLACER® and the College-Level Examination Program®. She will also supervise the College Board’s research and assessment development work. A key part of her job will be ensuring alignment across College Board programs as the organization works to delivery opportunity to all students. Schmeiser will also play a critical role in the College Board’s development of an improved SAT that better meets the needs of students, high schools and colleges at all levels. 

“High-quality assessments are at the core of delivering rigorous education,” said Schmeiser. “To achieve equity and excellence in education, we have to be able to measure performance and use the results to differentiate instruction. I look forward to being a part of the College Board team as we build a set of assessments strongly focused on the core knowledge and skills that evidence shows are most important to prepare students for the rigors of college and career.” 

Schmeiser has served as president of the National Council on Measurement in Education (NCME), as a member of the NCME board of directors and as chair of the following NCME committees: Testing and Test Use, Membership, Career Contributions Award, Annual Award, and Brenda Loyd Outstanding Dissertation Award. In addition, she served as chair of the NCME committee that developed the NCME Code of Professional Responsibilities in Educational Measurement. 

“Cyndie Schmeiser has considerable expertise in assessment for college readiness and the College Board is lucky to have it, especially as it remakes the SAT,” said Kati Haycock, President of Education Trust. “She also brings three things that are especially important in the early stages of our efforts to implement the Common Core State Standards:  a deep knowledge of secondary curriculum, honed through work in real middle and high school classrooms; a determination to make sure teachers have better resources in their efforts to build courses of genuine rigor; and a passion about providing a high quality education to those who have for too long been deprived of it.”

Schmeiser has sat on editorial boards for numerous publications and has published on such topics as standard setting, ethics in testing, education policy, test development, classroom assessment and large-scale assessment. She was a member of the board of trustees for the American College of Education, the board of directors for the Diversity Pipeline Alliance, the NCCEP/GEAR UP Evaluation Council, the NGA–Gates National Advisory Committee and the Digital Learning Council, among other committees focused on P–20 improvement. Schmeiser holds master’s and doctoral degrees in educational measurement and statistics from the University of Iowa.  She has also been named a recipient of the 2013 University of Iowa Distinguished Alumni Award for Achievement.

“I am elated to know Cyndie is taking on such a pivotal position at the College Board during this time of transition and advancement. She brings to the position a rich and unparalleled background in assessment design, organizational leadership and collaborative design,” said Gene Wilhoit, Partner, Student Achievement Partners. “Moreover, Cyndie possesses the rare attributes of an unwavering commitment to equal educational opportunity, a deep expertise in assessment design and the Common Core State Standards, and an acute ability to work with others to achieve remarkable results. She is a kind, compassionate and principled friend and colleague. This decision to join David and his dynamic team is a major addition to the College Board.”