Centre for Assessment Resarch, Policy and Practice in Education (CARPE) header
Centre for Assessment Research, Policy and Practice in Education (CARPE)


CARPE LogoAbout

The Centre for Assessment Research, Policy and Practice in Education (CARPE) was established by DCU as a core element of the  Institute of Education. With the financial support of Prometric (https://www.prometric.com), DCU appointed Professor Michael O’Leary as Chair in Assessment in 2015 to provide academic and research leadership in the area of educational and workplace assessment. Prometric also provides support for a Post-Doctoral Researcher and a PhD student at the centre. 

CARPE is a globally connected, influential, high-profile centre of assessment knowledge and expertise within DCU’s Institute of Education where new models of assessment, that address 21st century learning and teaching challenges, are developed, evaluated and disseminated locally, nationally and internationally; a centre that contributes significantly to the Institute of Education’s strategic vision (see https://www.dcu.ie/instituteofeducation) and to DCU’s Talent, Discovery and Transformation strategic plan (see https://www.dcu.ie/sites/default/files/iss/pdfs/web_version_combined.pdf).

CARPE’s mission is to shape the future of assessment policy and practice across all levels of the educational system (from early childhood to fourth level) and across the professions (from job entry to career advancement) with specific reference to four broad domains of work.  

  • Research: A wide range of research projects addressing many of the challenges posed by both existing and new conceptions of assessment are underway at CARPE. 
  • Policy: Through its research programme and access to local, national and international expertise, CAPRE contributes to critiques of policy and to policy making pertaining to all aspects of assessment. 
  • Professional Practice: In conjunction with DCU's postgraduate programmes and through its engagement with educational bodies in Ireland and internationally, CARPE is a locus of assessment professional development for educators working in settings from early childhood to fourth level. 
  • Networking:  Building effective networks with  individual assessment specialists as well as organisations focused on improving assessment at home and abroad is integral to the work of CARPE.


As a research centre within the Institute of Education, CARPE is managed by an Education Faculty Committee comprising the Chairs/Directors of Research Centres and chaired by rotation. The Associate Dean for Research is an ex officio member of the committee and the committee chair represents all DCU’s Research Centres on the Faculty Research Committee. 

Advisory Board

CARPE has an Advisory Board which meets annually. Membership is by invitation of the Director and is for three years.  The current members of the Advisory Board are:

  • Dr. Zita Lysaght, Interim Director of CARPE, DCU
  • Professor Michael O'Leary, Former Director of CARPE
  • Dr. Marguerite Clarke, Education Specialist, World Bank
  • Professor John Gardner, Deputy Principal (Education and Students), University of Stirling and Visiting Professor, University of Oxford
  • Professor Larry Ludlow, Department Chair, Educational Research Measurement and Evaluation Department, Boston College 
  • Garrett Sherry, Former Prometric Vice President, General Manager Europe, Middle East and Asia
  • Dr. Gerry Shiel, Research Fellow at the Education Research Centre
  • Dr. Mathias von Davier, Monan Professor in Education, Executive Director, TIMSS and PIRLS International Study Centre, Boston College


Members of the first CARPE Advisory Board fom 2016, pictured with representatives from CARPE, Prometric, and DCU Institute of Education

 CARPE team, advisory board members, and representatives from Prometric

L-R: Dr. Darina Scully (Prometric Postdoctoral Researcher), Anastasios Karakolidis (Prometric PhD Candidate), Prof. Jannette Elwood (CARPE Advisory Board), Garrett Sherry (CARPE Advisory Board), Steve Williams (Vice President, Prometric), Prof. John Gardner (CARPE Advisory Board), Dr. Anne Looney (Executive Dean, DCU Instiute of Education), Prof. Michael O'Leary (Prometric Chair in Assessment and Director of CARPE), Michael Brannick (President and CEO, Prometric), Dr. Zita Lysaght (CARPE Advisory Board), Dr. Brendan Walsh (Head of School of Policy & Practice, DCU), Prof. Daire Keogh (Deputy President, DCU)