Every few months, I take stock of my professional library and poke my head out into the journals and other publications to see what's new or what I've overlooked. This is made much easier by the fact that I am working on my Doctorate and have access to the UB libraries and electronic databases. I read three "data" books yesterday and can conclude there isn't really anything new under the sun. Over the next few days (or as I remember or am not too distracted by the Yankees repeated humiliation of the Sox) I'll post a summary and review of the books I am reading.
During professional development sessions on using state assessment data, I often use the analogy of running a marathon as a means of explaining the concept of benchmarking state assessment data. (It took me 6 hours, 7 minutes to finish the Buffalo marathon, the woman who won finished in something like 3 hours, 2 minutes.) I always felt proud of that example because it worked for teachers and it helped us move into actual data analysis. Thus, I was mildly disappointed when I saw this in a the book Dancing with Data to Improve Learning by Dave Sever. I always thought my analogy was inspired and original, although he uses it in a slightly different way, we use it accomplish the same goal - make data more meaningful.