Welcome to Planful Learning and Assessment LLC

Keeping learning fun

Combining the evidence from learning science with the wisdom of experienced teachers to provide students, parents, and educators engaging and effective learning and assessment content.

Planful learning and assessment


Full of or rich in plans; Characterized by planning; Organized; Systematic.

Oxford English Dictionary

Our Areas of Expertise

Impactful Innovation


Designing impactful innovation has been elusive.  The challenge is invention alone fails to positively change people’s lives. We help organizations put all the pieces together to create successful innovation.

Principled Design

Principled Design

Principled design is a way of thinking. On the assessment side, Principled Assessment Design is a family of related approaches including cognitive design systems, evidence‐centered design, principled design for efficacy, and assessment engineering.

Learning Science

Learning Sciences

The Learning Sciences have influenced the Common Core Math and the Next Generation Science Standards and NAEP Reading 2025. We support educators and students, and improve instruction and assessment, by combining teachers’ wisdom with Learning Sciences findings.

Engaging Content

Interested learners

Creating interesting learning and assessment content for kids has been hit-or-miss. We make it predictable by starting with the science on what makes tasks and activities engaging and relevant. We then tailor this knowledge to students’ lives and where they learn.

Modern Validity


Contemporary approaches view validity as an evidence-based argument made to a particular audience. We bring the tools, expertise, and experience to help you build strong validity arguments for the audience important to you.

What we’re thinking about …

Recent Blog Posts

What Does a Task Engineered for Engagement Look Life?

After publishing the second blog on engineer engaging learning and assessment content, I promised I would publish a blog illustrating the use of content features to motivate student engagement. In the blog today, I fulfill that promise by presenting two versions of the same NGSS-aligned, phenomenon-driven science task. The first version lacks most of the…

Planning for Different Perspectives in Developing Validity and Efficacy Arguments

No field or profession can prescribe what is or isn’t validity or efficacy evidence. Different fields have distinctive ways of asking questions, addressing a literature, criticizing ideas, and presenting arguments. The differences make sense from a socio-cultural perspective as each of these stakeholders—you might call them customers if you are in marketing or users if…

How Do We Engineer Engaging Learning and Assessment Tasks?

This is the second part of a two-part blog series on engaging learning and assessment content.  In part one, I explained why engaging learning and assessment content is important for the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), the NAEP Technology and Engineering Literacy Framework, and the 2025 NAEP Mathematics and…

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