Herbert J. Walberg

Distinguished Visiting Fellow
Biography: 

Herbert J. Walberg, a distinguished visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution, is a University Scholar at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Walberg was a member of the Koret Task Force on K–12 Education from 1999 to 2013. His research focuses on educational productivity and human accomplishments.

Walberg, who was confirmed as a member of the National Board for Education Sciences, joined two other Koret Task Force members in overseeing the research arm of the US Department of Education; he also served on the National Assessment Governing Board. Walberg is also chairman of the board of directors of the Heartland Institute, an independent, nonprofit research center headquartered in Chicago that provides policy analysis to national and state governments and journalists. Walberg joined the board of directors in 1993 and has served as its chairman since 1995.

Walberg has written or edited more than seventy books, including Radical Education Reforms with Chester Finn, a Hoover Institution distinguished visiting fellow and Koret Task Force member. Walberg has also written approximately 350 articles on such topics as the causes and effects of learning, teaching and instructional effectiveness, national comparisons of achievement, and educational measurement and evaluation. His articles have appeared in widely circulated journals, including Daedalus, Educational Leadership, Kappan, and Nature, and in such newspapers as the Chicago Tribune, the Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post. His most recent book is Tests, Testing, and Genuine School Reform (Hoover Institution Press, 2011).

Walberg was elected a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Royal Statistical Society (London), the American Psychological Association, and the Australian Association for Educational Research. Additionally, he was a member of the International Academy of Education.

Walberg has held research posts at the Educational Testing Service and the University of Wisconsin and has taught at Harvard University. He has been frequently called to testify before US congressional committees and federal courts on educational matters.

Walberg earned his PhD in educational psychology from the University of Chicago.

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Recent Commentary

Analysis and Commentary

Lifting School Standards

by Herbert J. Walbergvia Hoover Daily Report
Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Tests are one of the cheapest and most effective means of raising achievement.

Why Not Put Schools to the Test?

by Herbert J. Walbergvia Hoover Digest
Saturday, October 30, 2004

The best way to find out what’s wrong with America’s schools? Test them. By Bill Evers and Herbert J. Walberg.

Analysis and Commentary

School Choice Evidence

by Herbert J. Walbergvia Hoover Daily Report
Wednesday, July 21, 2004

In geographic areas with larger numbers of schools of choice, regular public schools achieve more, have higher graduation rates, and cost less than regular schools in other similar areas with little choice.

Analysis and Commentary

The Scientific Basis of Teaching Reading

by Herbert J. Walbergvia Hoover Daily Report
Monday, January 26, 2004

Children who fall substantially behind in reading in the early grades are unlikely to catch up.

Testing Student Learning, Evaluating Teaching Effectiveness

Testing Student Learning, Evaluating Teaching Effectiveness

by Herbert J. Walberg, Williamson M. Eversvia Books by Hoover Fellows
Thursday, January 1, 2004

This book takes a hard look at the professional, technical, and public policy issues surrounding student achievement and teacher effectiveness—and shows how testing and accountability can play a vital role in improving American schools.

Analysis and Commentary

Competition among Schools Benefits All Students

by Herbert J. Walbergvia Hoover Daily Report
Monday, September 29, 2003

Recent reports show that parents get more involved with their schools if they have information readily available on school performance.

Analysis and Commentary

School Choice Works

by Herbert J. Walbergvia Hoover Daily Report
Monday, April 21, 2003

Early research on American small-scale voucher programs suggests that choice may yield beneficial effects.

Education and Capitalism: How Overcoming Our Fear of Markets and Economics Can Improve America's Schools

Education and Capitalism: How Overcoming Our Fear of Markets and Economics Can Improve America's Schools

by Herbert J. Walbergvia Books by Hoover Fellows
Wednesday, January 1, 2003

The authors call on the need to combine education with capitalism.

Analysis and Commentary

The Cost of a Proficient Student

by Herbert J. Walbergvia Hoover Daily Report
Monday, December 23, 2002

U.S. taxpayers spent an average of $107,000 to produce a proficient fourth-grade reader.

Analysis and Commentary

The Tests We Need

by Herbert J. Walbergvia Hoover Daily Report
Monday, September 23, 2002

Despite many reforms and substantially increased spending, our schools are doing no better than they were in 1983.

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