UMassAmherst: Research, Educational Measurement, and Psychometrics (REMP)
Research, Educational Measurement, and Psychometrics (REMP)

REMP Alumna Linda Cook Retires from ETS

Dr. Linda Cook, a 1979 graduate of UMass' REMP program, retired from the Educational Testing Service (ETS) on September 27, 2010. She spent her whole career at ETS, where she was Principal Research Scientist (among other important roles) and her interests included test equating and scaling, cross-cultural issues in testing including adapting and linking tests given to examinees of different languages and cultures, and developing fair and valid assessments for students with disabilities.

Ron Hambleton prepared a letter to acknowledge her distinguished career. The letter is reproduced below.

Linda Cook
(Ed.D., UMass, 1979)
Picture credit: NCME

       Dear Linda,

I heard from Cathy Wendler that ETS is having a retirement party for you tomorrow. It is just like you to be very modest and keep these things from your friends and colleagues, so I am grateful to Cathy for the news. This gives me a chance to make a small contribution to the festivities.

It seems like only yesterday we were talking on the telephone about your first presentation at the annual NCME meeting- with you in San Francisco getting ready to present and being very nervous with me in Amherst still editing our conclusions! The following year we were both part of a symposium with Dan and Swami, and with Fred Lord as a discussant. I remember that time as one of the most memorable events in our careers. After that, events become a bit of a blur. You took your first job in psychometrics along with Dan a year or two later, and both of you were on your way to distinguished careers at ETS,

Linda, you have had a spectacular career, working your way through the ranks with so many outstanding colleagues, Ida Lawrence, Gary Marco, and Nancy Peterson are three who come to mind, but there were so many more. You published frequently, moved up to eventually serving as an ETS Vice-President, and later in your career shifting to work in the area of test accommodations, and working with another UMass graduate, Mary Pitoniak. Through your professional contributions, you gained both national and international visibility. I remember the fun too we had with Ingemar Wedman in Sweden, our work together on the SweSAT, our dinner at Fem Sma Hus, and your work with Dan on behalf of the International Test Commission. I especially remember our annual NCME dinner with Barbara, Mary Lyn, Del, Else, and Dan. I hope these will continue so we can share our stories about measurement issues, our experiences, and our travels. Of course, your reputation in our field has culminated in your highly deserving election as Vice-President of Division D of AERA, and now as President of the National Council on Measurement in Education, the two organizations around which your professional work has centered. You are highly respected because of your technical skills but you are beloved by colleagues because of your warmth, interpersonal skills, and the respect you show to others.

We are so very proud at UMass of your contributions to our profession, Linda. On behalf of Steve Sireci and all of us, I want to wish you a long and happy retirement. Enjoy your role as grandmother to Ethan, son to Peter, and wife to Dan. At the same time, you are starting a three-year term on the executive committee of the NCME. So, while ETS is losing you as a staff member, the measurement field will, I am pleased to note, continue to benefit from your leadership, positive attitude, good cheer, and experience! .


Ronald K. Hambleton
Distinguished University Professor

Dr. Cook's full ETS bio can be found here.

Congratulations and best wishes, Dr. Cook!


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