BC Children’s Hospital Psychology Presents: Assessment of English Language Learners: Evidence-based evaluation and best practice

Thursday, November 5, 2020 | 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

BC Children's Hospital

Location: Zoom Webinar – (zoom email invite will be sent out 2 days prior to session start)

Speaker: Dr. Samuel Ortiz, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology, St. John’s University, New York

Dr. Ortiz is Professor of Psychology at St. John’s University, New York. He holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Southern California and a credential in school psychology with postdoctoral training in bilingual school psychology from San Diego State University. He has served as Visiting Professor and Research Fellow at Nagoya University, Japan, as Vice President for Professional Affairs of APA Division 16 (School Psychology), as member and Chair of APA’s, Committee on Psychological Tests and Assessment, as member of the Coalition for Psychology in Schools and Education, as representative on the New York State Committee of Practitioners on ELL and LEP Students, and as member of APA Presidential Task Force on Educational Disparities. Dr. Ortiz has served on various editorial boards including Journal of School Psychology, School Psychology Quarterly, and Journal of Applied School Psychology. He is an internationally recognized expert on a variety of topics including nondiscriminatory assessment, evaluation of English learners, cross-battery assessment (XBA), and learning disabilities. He is author of the Ortiz PVAT, X-BASS v2.0 and his books include “Assessment of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students: A practical guide,” and “Essentials of Cross-Battery Assessment, 3rd Edition.” Dr. Ortiz is bilingual (Spanish) and bicultural (Puerto Rican).
See Poster (PDF)

Description: This presentation provides a review of the relationship among linguistic, cognitive, and academic development and the application of research regarding EL evaluation within a practical, systematic framework. Specific procedures are presented which permit any evaluator to conduct assessments of English learners that generate valid data to support conclusions and diagnostic decisions regarding English learners. Topics include: understanding bias in testing; issues regarding test score validity; advantages and disadvantages of typical methods for evaluating English learners; the importance of “true peer” comparisons, research foundations and use of the Culture-Language Test Classifications and Interpretive Matrix, integration of the Ortiz PVAT in conducting EL evaluations. The knowledge and skills gained will be useful to practitioners at all levels and provides a solid base for engaging in evaluation of English learners that constitutes defensible and current best practices.

Learning Objectives: In general, following the workshop, participants will able to-

  1. ) Understand the true nature of bias in testing as a function of construct validity.
  2. ) Identify the two main variables that affect test score validity for English learners
  3. ) Identify the limitations of various approaches to testing English learners and the extent to which validity is undermined by cultural and linguistic factors.
  4. ) Apply research findings in a manner that permits a “true peer” comparison for English learners
  5. ) Learn how to apply and use the Culture-Language Test Classifications and Interpretive Matrix as a method for evaluating the extent to which cultural and linguistic factors may have compromised the validity of test performance and results.
  6. ) Integrate the Ortiz PVAT to enhance the quality and diagnostic validity of testing
  7. ) Use a systematic process for evaluation of English learners that constitutes current best practice


  • BCCH Psychologists Employees Registration through BCCH Learning Hub
  • Community Psychologists Registration Fee for $125 through BCCH Learning Hub (under general public)
  • Enrolled Graduated Students Registration Fee for $100 through BCCH Learning Hub (under student)

Additional information contact us by email anarayan@cw.bc.ca

Please visit our BCCH Learning Hub link to register https://learninghub.phsa.ca/Courses/23881/

Certificates of Participation will be provided