About Dr. Cheryl Wild


What does Wild & Associates, Inc. do? Cheryl L. Wild, Ph.D., founder and President, and her associates help organizations better serve their customers by improving the validity, efficiency and effectiveness of their assessment services.

Clients have included: Accreditation Commission for Audiology Education, ACT, Inc., American Council on Education, American Institute for Certified Public Accountants, the American National Standards Institute, Brookdale Community College, Canon Business Solutions Northeast, the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc., CFA Institute, the College Board, the Council for Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools, the Delaware Department of Education, International Federation of Inspection Agencies, Microsoft, Mississippi State University, the National Board of Medical Examiners, the National Graduate School of Quality Management, National Ground Water Association, and the New Jersey Department of Education.

Dr. Cheryl Wild

Proudest achievements as a professional?

  • Coaching the two Merrill Lynch teams to win the national gold and bronze awards in the Association for Quality and Participation Team Competition in 2002 (currently part of the American Society for Quality)
  • Co-editing Improving Testing: Applying Process Tools and Techniques to Assure Quality – the first book in the measurement field to go beyond psychometrics and explain the use of process-oriented quality management tools and techniques to assure quality testing products and services.

What made Cheryl interested in a career in testing?

When I was growing up, I loved to hear stories about my parents. My Wild grandmother (Dad’s mother) told me a story about my father starting first grade. The school gave a readiness test to all the incoming students, and the teacher was concerned that Dad wasn’t ready for school. Grandma (who had a master’s degree in English and was a teacher herself) went to visit the first grade teacher and asked to see a copy of the test. Now, my grandparents were poor. The questions consisted of four pictures each and the student was supposed to circle the picture that was wrong. One of the items Dad got wrong was an item that had four cups – three with handles and one with no handle. Dad circled the three cups with handles as being “wrong.” Grandma told the teacher that none of their cups at home had handles (they were all broken) and she found other questions that were similarly marked wrong but were similarly biased. Dad started first grade and did fine. His daughter studied to become a math teacher and became fascinated with testing and did her master’s degree on item bias.

What keeps Cheryl interested in testing after 35 years?

Testing is important! Tests help us understand ourselves, they help us evaluate what we know (and what we don’t know), they help us learn. Results of tests can be used to help evaluate the outcomes of educational programs and to improve these programs. As a consumer, I like to know that my service providers have passed tests that show they have a basic understanding of their field and have met certification requirements.

Although I believe that tests are great tools, they have an enormous potential for misuse and even harm if incorrectly conceived, developed, managed, and/or scored. Students may not graduate from high school or may be prevented from attending the school of their choice based on test scores. Adults may not be allowed to work in their field if they cannot pass a licensing test. If a test score contributes to a pass/fail decision, it should be because the test is highly valid and the person who fails does not have the knowledge/skills that the test measures.

Yet many people who develop tests don’t recognize or understand this potential for misuse or harm. Many people feel that ANYBODY can develop and administer a test and don’t recognize that testing is a field with best practices.

As an expert on both the psychometrics and the quality management aspects of testing, I enjoy sharing my expertise with others who believe in the importance of testing and are interested in developing the best possible services for their customers.

Client Feedback
…you offered at least a couple of different approaches to standard setting, then we talked it through and decided on what would most likely work best in that environment. Then we worked out a plan and time schedule. So one thing I would say is that you helped me identify the best approach to the task at hand, then helped us organize the work to meet our objectives. You were really helpful in laying out the groundwork, like the kinds of information to request from the College Board, and what information to provide the participants in the standard setting process, and guiding me in the right direction.
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Resume

Dr. Wild is President and founder of Wild & Associates, Inc. Dr. Wild helps organizations better serve their customers by improving the validity, efficiency and effectiveness of assessment services. Past clients and current clients include Accreditation Commission for Audiology Education, ACT, Inc., American Council on Education, American Institute for Certified Public Accountants, the American National Standards Institute, Brookdale Community College, Canon Business Solutions Northeast, the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc., CFA Institute, the College Board, the Council for Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools, the Delaware Department of Education, International Federation of Inspection Agencies, Microsoft, Mississippi State University, the National Board of Medical Examiners, the National Graduate School of Quality Management, National Ground Water Association, and the New Jersey Department of Education.

Dr. Wild is an examiner for the American National Standards Institute, using the ISO/IEC 17024 Standard for Bodies who Certify People. She is also an adjunct professor and teaches benchmarking for the National Graduate School, based in Falmouth, Massachusetts.

Dr. Wild has more than 35 years of experience in the testing industry, as a test designer and statistician as well as a process improvement leader. Dr. Wild spent 25 years with the Educational Testing Service, where she served as executive director for business process reengineering, organizational development and test development. However, Dr. Wild is not just a psychometrician – she is an expert in process design and process management and has worked extensively with testing organizations on quality initiatives. She received all of her degrees from Purdue University: Bachelor of Science degree in computer science and mathematics, as well as both a Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy in educational research and statistics.

The New Jersey chapter of the Association for Quality and Participation (AQP) has honored her for being the Executive Director of the New Jersey AQP Team Excellence Competition and for coaching the two Merrill Lynch teams that won the national gold and bronze awards in 2002. Dr. Wild served as a national and regional judge for the team competition (now part of the American Society for Quality) for many years. She has been an examiner for the New Jersey Governor’s Award for Performance Excellence, modeled after the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. Among other professional groups, she is a member of the American Society for Quality; the Association for Test Publishers; the American Educational Research Association; the National Council for Measurement in Education; the Council on Licensure, Enforcement and Regulation; and the National Organization for Competency Assurance.

Dr. Wild is the author of many articles and book chapters on testing and measurement issues, as well as on productivity and quality improvement. Dr. Wild is co-editor and author of multiple chapters in Improving Testing: Process Tools and Techniques to Assure Quality. She is also co-editor of Certification: A ICE Handbook (2nd edition).




Cheryl Wild has helped many organizations improve processes.  Read what clients have to say – click here.


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