Dr Therese N. Hopfenbeck

Dr Therese N. Hopfenbeck is Associate Professor and Director of the Oxford University Centre for Educational Assessment.

She joined OUCEA in January 2012, as Deputy Director from the University of Oslo’s research group for Measurement and Evaluation of Student Achievement at the Unit for Quantitative Analysis of Education, where she was a post-doctoral researcher. Therese has a grounding in practice, having been a secondary school teacher with many years experience in the classroom, Therese has also worked as school district supervisor and as a consultant for the Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training regarding the development and evaluation of national exams.

Therese has a presence on LinkedIn, ResearchGate, Academia.edu and Twitter: @TNHopfenbeck. Email: therese.hopfenbeck@education.ox.ac.uk


Therese’s research interests are focused upon large-scale comparative assessments and how international testing has shaped public policy across education systems. In addition she is interested in different models of classroom assessment and self-regulation.

Therese is the Research Manager of PIRLS 2016 and has also been appointed by the Norwegian Minister of Education to chair the board of the Norwegian Centre for Learning and Behavioural Research in Education. She has been invited as external expert on Assessment for Learning research projects in India and South Africa. She is Lead Editor of the international research journal Assessment in Education: Principles, Policy and Practice. 

Current doctoral students

Jeanne Ryan, Of words and washback: how has PISA influenced the assessment of reading ability in national contexts?

Anna Steen-Utheim (Norwegian Business School BI LearningLab)

Kristine Görgen, Who are the good immigrants- teaching and testing citizenship for immigration

Shailen Popat, How have primary schools in Oxford enacted Assessment without Levels

Owen Henkel, What are the odds? Predictive modeling of students’ likelihood of success in blended learning environments.

Jamie Stiff

Marja Popov

Previous doctoral students

Natalie UsherLearning about academic writing through holistic peer review

Carol BrownWho am I and what can I achieve? A study of the relationships between identity, expectations, values and A-level achievement. Dphil 2017.

Interested in supervising students in the following areas

  • Assessment of reading
  • Self-regulated learning
  • Assessment for Learning
  • International large-scale assessment (PIRLS, PISA)

Research grants awarded since 2012

Assessment for Learning in Africa (PI), ESRC-DfID, 2016-2019 (£695,120)

PIRLS 2016 National Centre (PI), Department for Education, 2013-2017 (£178,256)

PIRLS for Teachers (PI), ESRC Impact Acceleration Award, 2015-2016 (£49,917)

A State of the Field Review: Assessment and Learning (PI), Knowledge Center for Education, Research Council of Norway, 2013-2014 (£55,303)

Investigation into the predictability of the Irish Leaving Certificate Examinations (Co-PI), State Examinations Commission, Ireland, 2013 (£90,570)

Assessment policy processes in Norway (PI), Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, 2012-2013 (59,997 Euros)

World Class Qualifications Review: Research evidence relating to proposals for reform of the GCSE (Co-PI), Pearson UK, 2012

Recent Publications


Journal articles

Book chapters

  • Eklöf, H. & Hopfenbeck,T. N. (2018) Self-Reported Effort and Motivation in the PISA Test, chapter in book edited by Bryan Maddox, Bloomsbury Publishing Plc.
  • Baird, J. & Hopfenbeck, T.N. (2016) Curriculum in the Twenty-First Century and the Future of Examinations (Chapter 51), in: Wyse, D. Hayward, L. & Pandya, J. (Eds.) The Sage Handbook of Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment, Vol. 2 .
  • Hopfenbeck, T.N. (2014) Testing Times: Fra PISA til nasjonale prover. Intensjoner, ansvar og anvendelse. (Testing Times: From PISA to national tests. Intentions, accountability and applications.)    Chapter 23, 401–419, in: J.H. Stray & L. Wittek, Pedagogikk, en grunnbok. Cappelen Damm Akademisk, ISBN: 978-82-02-41424-5.
  • Hopfenbeck, T.N. (2013) What did you learn in school today?, in: J. Hattie, T.S. Wille, M. Hermansen, T.N. Hopfenbeck, C. Madsen, P. Kirkegaard, H. Bjerresgaard, C.E. Weinstein, I. Bråten & R. Andreassen (Eds) Feedback og vurdering for laering, in Danish. ISBN:978-87-7281-685-2.
  • Lillejord, S. & Hopfenbeck, T.N. (2013) Vurdering og læring i skolen, in: Lillejord, S., Manger, T. & Nordahl, T. (Eds) Livet i skolen 2: Grunnbok i pedagogikk og elevkunnskap. Lærerprofesjonalitet, 231-259.
  • Eklof, H., Hopfenbeck, T.N. & Kjaernsli, M. (2012) Hva vet vi om elevers testmotivasjon? Erfaringer fra internasjonale og nasjonale undersokelser i Norge og Sverige (What do we know about students’ test motivation? Experiences of international and national tests in Norway and Sweden). Chapter 6, in: T.N. Hopfenbeck, M. Kjaernsli & R.V. Olsen (Eds) Kvalitet i norsk skole. Internasjonale og nasjonale undersokelser av laeringsutbytte og undervisning. (Quality in the Norwegian school. International and national tests of learning outcomes and teaching). Oslo, Universitetsforlaget ISBN 978-82-15-02004-4.
  • Hopfenbeck, T.N. (2012) Strategier for laering. Om selvregulering og strategimaalinger i PISA (Strategies for learning. Self-regulating and strategy measuring in PISA). Chapter 5, in: T.N. Hopfenbeck, M. Kjaernsli & R.V. Olsen (Eds) – see above.
  • Olsen, R.V., Hopfenbeck, T.N., Lillejord, S. & Roe, A. (2012) Elevenes læringssituasjon etter innføringen av ny reform, Acta Didactica Oslo. 1/2012.
  • Hopfenbeck, T.N. (2010) Elevstemmer fra PISA 2006, I Elstad, E., og Sivesind, K. (ed). PISA- sannheten om skolen? Oslo: Universitetsforlaget. (Student voices in PISA.)
  • Hopfenbeck, T.N. og  Roe, A. (2010) Lese og læringsstrategier, I Kjærnsli, M. og Roe, A. (Ed): På rett spor, Norske elevers kompetanser i lesing, matematikk og naturfag I PISA 2009. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget. (Reading and learning strategies.)
  • Hopfenbeck, T.N, og Kjærnsli, M. (2010) Er norske elever motivert for å gjennomføre PISA-prøven? I Kjærnsli, M. og Roe, A. (Ed): På rett spor, Norske elevers kompetanser i lesing, matematikk og naturfag I PISA 2009. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget. (Test motivation in PISA.)
  • Hopfenbeck, T.N., Kjærnsli, M., Throndsen, (2010) I.: Rektorenes svar på spørsmål i skolespørreskjemaet. I Kjærnsli, M. og Roe, A.(Ed): På rett spor, Norske elevers kompetanser i lesing, matematikk og naturfag I PISA 2009. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget. (School leaders’ answers to questions of leadership from the Norwegian PISA report.)
  • Hopfenbeck, T.N. (2007) Læringsstrategier i PISA. I “Tid for Tunge Løft? Norske elevers kompetanse i naturfag, lesing og matematikk i PISA 2006″. i: M. Kjærnsli, S. Lie, R. Olsen and S. Lie (Ed). Oslo, Universitetsforlaget. (Learning strategies in PISA.)
  • Hopfenbeck, T.N. (2006) What did you learn in School Today? I Elstad og Turmo (Ed) Læringsstrategier, Søkelys på læreres praksis, Oslo, 2006 Universitetsforlaget.
  • Turmo, A., & Hopfenbeck, T.N. (2006) Learning Strategies and Mathematical Achievement in the Nordic Countries, in: J. Mejding & A. Roe (Eds) Northern Lights on PISA 2003 – a reflection from the Nordic countries. København: Nordic Councils of Ministers.

Research reports

  • McGrane, J., Stiff, J., Baird, J.A., Lenkeit, J. & T.N. Hopfenbeck (2017) Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS): National Report for England. @OUCEA, Department for Education, University of Oxford. Elliott, V., Baird, J., Hopfenbeck, T.N., Ingram, J., Thompson, I., Usher, N., Zantout, M., Richardson, J. & Coleman, R. (2016) A marked improvement? A review of the evidence on written marking.Education Endowment Foundation.
  • Baird, J., Hopfenbeck, T.N., Elwood, J., Caro, D. & Ahmed, A. (2015) Predictability in the Irish Leaving Certificate, Report commissioned by the State Examinations Commission, Ireland.
  • Baird, J., Hopfenbeck, T.N., Newton, P., Stobart, G. & Steen-Utheim, A.T. (2014) State of the Field Review: Assessment and Learning. Report for the Norwegian Knowledge Centre for Education.
  • Baird, J., Ahmed, A., Hopfenbeck, T.N., Brown, C. & Elliott, V. (2013) Research evidence relating to proposals for reform of the GCSE. OUCEA Report.
  • Elliott, V., Baird, J., Hopfenbeck, T.N., Ingram, J., Thompson, I., Usher, N., Zantout, M., Richardson, J. & Coleman, R. (2016) A marked improvement? A review of the evidence on written marking.Education Endowment Foundation.
  • Hellekjaer, G. O. & Hopfenbeck, T.N.  (2012) CLIL og lesing. En sammenligning av Vg3-elevers leseferdigheter og lesestrategibruk I 2002 og 2011. Report to the Norwegian Centre for Foreign Languages in Education, investigating students’ reading comprehension at the age of 18, comparing IB, CLIL and ordinary ESL students in Upper Secondary Schools.
  • Hopfenbeck, T.N., Tolo, A., Florez, T. & El Masri, Y. (2013) Balancing Trust and Accountability? The Assessment for Learning Programme in Norway. Report for OECD.
  • Throndsen, I., Hopfenbeck, T.N., Lie, S., og Dale, E.L. (2009) Bedre vurderingspraksis. Evaluering av prosjektet kjennetegn for måloppnåelse. (Better Assessment Practice. An Evaluation of a project to improve and develop assessment criteria in Norwegian schools.)
  • Lie, S., Hopfenbeck, T.N., Ibsen, E., & Turmo, A. (2005) Nasjonale prøver på ny prøve. Oslo: University of Oslo. (An evaluation of the national tests in Norway, 2005.)

Policy briefs

  • Hopfenbeck, T.N. & J. Lenkeit (2018) PIRLS for Teachers: Making PIRLS results more useful for practitioners, IEA policy brief, to be published on the IEA website for the 50 countries participating in PIRLS 2016.




  • Director

College affiliation

  • Kellogg College


  • Associate Professor

Subject area

  • Assessment

Research groups

  • Educational Assessment

+44 (0)1865 274017