Wendy B. Surr has nearly 30 years of experience leading research, evaluation, and professional development initiatives for educational programs. Surr has extensive expertise in the development of assessment instruments, design, and delivery of in-person/online training and other public speaking venues. In addition, Surr has experience in managing research and administrative staff, consultants, and, organizational partner relationships. Surr’s most recent work has been focused in two main areas of study related to student learning: teaching practices associated with student-centered classrooms, and strategies and approaches associated with the use of data for supporting student progress. In her current role as a senior researcher at AIR, she is leading the development of a set of survey instruments to measure competency-based education practices in three states, and recently served as a senior researcher on a study of student-centered teaching practices in high school mathematics classrooms.
For over a decade Surr’s work focused almost exclusively on the development, testing and use of assessment tools for measuring program quality, capturing relevant intermediary youth outcomes, and helping administrators and practitioners use data to drive improvements in practice and programming. This work included the development and testing of the Afterschool Program Assessment System for the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Some of Surr’s other past roles include: co-principal investigator for the APT Validation Study: Identifying and Minimizing Measurement Error, a W.T. Grant Foundation funded research study testing the technical properties of the APT tool; principal investigator for the Data Driven Program Improvement Project for teen programs in Philadelphia, PA.; and lead developer of ToolFind.org, an online directory of outcome tools disseminated by the United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley.