Neal is the director of the Achievement and Assessment Institute. He also is a professor of psychology and research in education and serves as the co-director of the Center for Educational Testing and Evaluation, both at the University of Kansas.
He started his career as a classroom teacher, worked summers with students with significant cognitive disabilities, and subsequently worked in large-scale assessment for 32 years. He has worked as a psychometrician, test developer, and systems developer. Neal has managed all aspects of the educational testing process for both general and alternate assessments, including as an executive director at Educational Testing Service, associate commissioner for Curriculum and Assessment at the Kentucky Department of Education, senior vice president at Measured Progress, and vice president and general manager at CTB/McGraw-Hill. He has published and presented more than 100 articles, papers, and book chapters on assessment.