Hi, HASTAC! My name is James Hammond and I'm a second year PhD student in the Joint Program in English and Education at the University of Michigan. My research focuses on the history and theory of writing assessment and related assessment technologies. In particular, I consider the social histories of large-scale assessments and assessment scoring practices, reexamining ostensibly neutral tests through the lenses of critical race and critical disability theories. Prior to beginning my research at the University of Michigan, I served as a high school teacher in San Antonio, Texas, were I collaborated with instructional specialists in composing curriculum and providing professional development for the teachers in my district. As a result of these experiences, I have a commitment not only to historical and theoretical research, but also to critical (re)consideration of the pedagogical uses and effects of technology in the classroom.
At the University of Michigan, I have held teaching appointments in the department of English as an instructor of First Year Composition, and in the School of Education as a field instructor for undergraduates seeking Secondary Teaching Certification in ELA. In addition, I serve as a member of the James R. Squire Office of Policy Research
in the English Language Arts for the National Council of Teachers of English. My work with the Squire Office both analyzes and makes recommendations concerning a range of national education policies, including teacher preparation and standardized testing.
I'm excited to be a part of the HASTAC community! I look forward to extending and sharing my research on writing assessment technologies, and in a related vein, I would like to begin organizing and expanding critical conversations surrounding the perceived effectiveness and trustworthiness of assessment/evaluation technologies by placing those conversations alongside related discussions in critical theory, critical media studies, surveillance studies, and the digital humanities.