Nicole Merino is the Director of Early Learning and Teacher Performance Assessment.
Dr. Merino is the lead developer for performance assessments in early childhood and early elementary. As Director of Teacher Performance Assessment, she serves as the National Director for edTPA, a performance assessment for pre-service teachers, and is the main point of contact at SCALE for the national consortium of 40+ states. She provides technical assistance and policy support to universities and state departments engaged in the implementation of edTPA. Dr. Merino a senior designer and developer of teacher performance assessments and scoring systems, including significant contributions to the Performance Assessment for California Teachers (PACT), edTPA and the IB Teacher Development Tool. Dr. Merino is a trainer of trainers and consultant to Teacher Performance Assessment implementers throughout the country. Her teaching background spans from early childhood to higher education and she has taught in teacher education for the past 15 years. Her areas of specializations include social-cognition, social-emotional learning, design of educative scoring systems, and high stakes performance assessment. Dr. Merino has also co-led a research studies examining the perceived benefits of project-based learning, specifically language development and social-emotional learning in underserved populations. Since the early 2000’s, she has participated many local, state, national and international initiatives related to policy, school reform, assessment and/or best practices in teaching and learning. Prior to joining SCALE in 2009, she served as local PACT coordinator and teaching associate in the Teacher Education Program at UC Santa Barbara. She received her Masters and Ph.D. in Education from UC Santa Barbara.