Christopher Tienken, Associate Professor of K-12 Education Leadership, Management, and Policy released his seventh book, and first book to be published in Italy. Evaluating Educational Quality, was an edited volume, published by Franco Angeli, one of the largest publishers of academic books and journals in Italy. Tienken collaborated with Italian colleagues Maria Tomarchio and Giuseppe Pillera from the University of Catania, Sicily, and Cristiano Corsini from the University Roma Tre, Rome, on the multi-year project.
The authors in the edited volume examine and critique some of the international apparatuses, activities, and institutes dedicated to the evaluation of the effectiveness and efficiency of schools and universities. Each chapter critiques a specific aspect of education evaluation from an international perspective. The book includes topics such as teacher evaluation in Norway, the international PISA testing regime, merit pay policy in Italy, early childhood teacher evaluation in Italy, and university accountability schemes. The authors provide research-based policy recommendations for how to improve accountability systems at the state, national, and international levels. The book includes chapters by international experts from Spain, Norway, and Italy, along with Tienken's chapter that provides an analysis of Italy's national teacher merit pay policy.
The idea for the book project emerged from an international conference co-chaired by Tienken at the University of Catania in 2017: International Conference on Evaluating Educational Quality. A planning meeting took place the following year in Sicily and chapter proposals were solicited and put through the peer review process.
The authors were able to publish the book in the open-access format through an Italian research grant, making the content available to the academic and practitioner communities free of charge.