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TIMES History: Founded in 2001, the Texas Institute for Measurement, Evaluation, and Statistics (TIMES) evolved from over 15 years of successful research collaborations in the areas of education and developmental disabilities involving Dr. David Francis in the Department of Psychology, Dr. Barbara Foorman (formerly of the University of Houston Department of Educational Psychology), and Dr. Jack Fletcher of the University of Houston Department of Psychology.
While TIMES’ initial research initiatives focused on psychology and education, the focus has evolved to reflect TIMES’ commitment to the promotion and development of statistical knowledge. By establishing a university-based resource in measurement, evaluation, and statistics for faculty and administrators, it continues to advance the application of statistical knowledge in research and decision making. In 2013 TIMES welcomed several of the University’s top computer science based researchers and their projects into the fold, including Dr. Lennart Johnsson, Dr. Ioannis Kakadiaris, Dr. Ioannis Pavlidis, Dr. Ioanna Semendeferi, and Dr. Ricardo Vilalta, as well as psychology researchers Dr. Candice Alfano, Dr. Julia Hannay, Dr. Carla Sharp, and Dr. Jennifer Tackett.
Mission: It is the mission of TIMES to advance scientific discovery through the development and application of measurement, evaluation, and statistical research methods.
About the center: The primary purposes of the Texas Institute for Measurement, Evaluation, and Statistics are to advance knowledge about, and to improve the behavioral, psychological, educational and developmental outcomes of children and adults through the application and development of high quality, cutting-edge research methods, and the delivery of state-of-the art research and statistical support services. In addition, TIMES’ broader mission is to promote, develop, and advance statistical knowledge and its application in research and decision making, and to establish a university-based resource in measurement, evaluation, and statistics for faculty and administrators. In light of this broader mission, in addition to conducting primary research, TIMES provides essential research support services in four major areas. These include the design of advanced quasi-experimental studies, such as those used for researching developmental and educational questions in natural settings (e.g., such as children in classrooms), as well as the design of more traditional “true” experimental studies. Secondly, TIMES specializes in the application of advanced statistical models for (a) measuring longitudinal outcomes (e.g., student growth), (b) predicting risk and failure (e.g., predicting poor student outcomes at the earliest possible point in development), (c) measuring key constructs and their impact on desired outcomes (e.g., assessing the importance of teacher behaviors in advancing student achievement), and (d) modeling institutional effectiveness (e.g., evaluating the efficacy of school wide reform efforts). Third, TIMES is a leader in the use of advanced psychometric models and technology tools to create research instruments. Finally, TIMES supports the primary data collection efforts of researchers and educators through (a) automated data entry, (b) electronic data storage, (c) computerized data management, and (d) essential reporting services.