How do you assess that?

Session number: BL12 Act 48 code: BL121969
A parent/coach/teacher team focus on the question often asked about project based or inquiry learning: How do you assess students? Discussion will include the focus on planning assessments first, the creation of varied performance assessments, and the pitfalls of assessing such work. Questions and dialogue are encouraged among participants.

Link to google presentation:
Project based learning brings up issues of assessment not addressed by summative assessments. A rubric for the project final alone is not enough.

  • Teacher derived tasks for learning and assessment
  • Interactive classwork - teacher and student roles equal for learning and feedback
  • Project feedback
  • Using multiple levels to demonstrate knowledge
  • Use of checklists
  • Checkpoints - checking for progress, understandings, use of resources, group dynamics
  • Reflection - best given as homework and open ended to assess knowledge
  • Use of history tab on wiki to determine level of interaction among group members
  • Use Assessment for Learning - not just assessment of learning - assess learning acquired through process - focus on problem solving and understanding - ability to apply skills - qualitative assessment - use assessment alongside learning

Big questions

If assessment is to show student learning, how can we justify grades when it is based upon the teachers time and not the students? Should grading not be about the learning process and should be flexible to show their actual learning and remediation? Does it matter how long it takes to learn it? Can skills be broken down into vocabulary, essential themes, and major points that students can remediate only where it is needed? Will students remediate just to be better or should there be tangible immediate rewards for learning to do so?

From research

  • Quality feedback including comments is essential.
  • Process goals is especially important.
  • Assessment that leads to mastery is essential.
  • Improving formative assessments raise standards. (Cannot reform standards without reforming assessments.)
  • Should be analyzing work to identify learning needs, not just assigning grades.

"...they (laptops) increase students' engagement in school, improve technology skills, and have positive effects on students' writing. However, evidence of the effectiveness of large-scale laptop programs in other learning domains is scarce. Research in many nations suggests that laptop programs will be most successful as part of balanced, comprehensive initiatives that address changes in education goals, curricula, teacher training, and assessment."