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Ten Takeaway Tips for Using Authentic Assessment in Your School

Ten Takeaway Tips for Using Authentic Assessment in Your School
The School of the Future's (SOF) mission is to empower each and every student. Teachers accomplish this not only by making their classroom content and instruction engaging but also by making their assessments authentic. Teachers ask SOF students to demonstrate their comprehension and mastery of the curriculum in ways that are meaningful to them. This goes beyond getting the "right" answers on tests. At SOF, students develop the learning skills and habits of mind that are essential in the classroom -- and the rest of their lives. Here are ten tips to help you use authentic assessment in your school. 1. Authentic assessment can seem overwhelming at first. 2. Authentic assessment can be deeply rewarding for everyone involved, but it does take time and effort and can be demanding on teachers. 3. SOF teachers design their concluding summative assessments first. 4. 5. You can be creative with authentic assessments, but you still have to base your assessments on the standards you are teaching. Related:  Authentic Assessment & Engagement

Tips for Giving Online Class Feedback and Construcive Criticism written by: Sylvia Cochran•edited by: Sarah Malburg•updated: 4/25/2013 Learning how to give online class feedback is more challenging than many a virtual education instructor imagines. Read on for five must-know tips on how to offer constructive feedback in any online university setting. The Importance of Feedback Feedback in online classes not only enhances the learning experience, but it actually makes learning possible in the first place.Students attending online universities do so from the privacy – and relative loneliness or isolation – of their homes. Student needs for constructive feedback, which are met inside the brick and mortar classroom in the form of direct question and answer sessions or even body language of peers and instructors, remain largely unmet.

Chunking Information for Instructional Design If we ran a contest for the favorite esoteric word of Instructional Designers, the term “chunking” might win. It’s a concept embedded in the world of instructional and information design. Chunking content is critical because of how our brain appears to work. Chunking Defined Chunking refers to the strategy of breaking down information into bite-sized pieces so the brain can more easily digest new information. Why We Chunk Content George A. The pearl of wisdom here is that if a learner’s working memory is full, the excess information will just drop out—as in disappear. Chunking Information for eLearning Chunking information is particularly important for online learning. Four Steps to Chunking Information Now that we can proudly say our working memories are basically sieves, what strategies can eLearning designers implement to overcome this? Step 1: Start at the highest level. Start with large chunks of conceptually related content and use these as your modules. Turn Bits into Chunks.

How [not] to Design an Online Course Moving a face-to-face credit course to an online environment is far more challenging than one might expect – as numerous experienced and esteemed professors have discovered. In this post learn vicariously through one professor’s experience of ‘what not to do’. I’d like to introduce you to Professor Harding a history professor who is transitioning his face-to-face undergraduate history course to a twelve-week, 3-credit online course. Professor Harding, though fictitious embodies the typical errors made by most course instructors with little or no experience in online learning when moving their face-to-face course to the online environment. The purpose of this post is to highlight common errors that I’ve observed and experienced as an instructional designer when assisting professors with their course transition to the online format. I also aim to provide guidance for educators involved in a similar course transition process along with resources for further support. 2. 3. 4. 5. Like this:

55% More STEM Students Fail Lectures Than Active Learning Classes Teaching & Learning | News 55% More STEM Students Fail Lectures Than Active Learning Classes Traditional lectures are failing students in STEM disciplines (science, technology, engineering and math). According to a new meta-analysis published this week, a staggering 55 percent more students flunk purely lecture-based STEM courses than flunk courses taught with some sort of active learning component. Active learning — in which students are engaged with their learning through discussion, reflection, collaboration or other types of activities that involve more than just passive listening and notetaking — has long been held up as a model for instruction that has significant potential for improving student outcomes, with several studies pointing to benefits like improved test scores and improved performance on papers, coupled with improved retention (fewer dropouts) — particularly in STEM disciplines.

Is It Time To Dismantle the Lecture Hall? -- Campus Technology Big Picture | News Is It Time To Dismantle the Lecture Hall? In this debate, the question might not be so much about whether online education is effective, but whether it could be any worse than the existing model. By Dian Schaffhauser04/03/14 When Anant Agarwal was in college, he would "follow the professor for the first five minutes" and then get lost and spend the next hour scrambling to keep up with note-taking. That's no way to run a learning model, said this professor of electrical engineering and computer science at MIT and CEO of edX, the storied MOOC site founded by Harvard and MIT. On the other hand, "Online education will not replace the great colleges." Then again, contended Ben Nelson, the practice of paying a professor to teach just a few students each year is not exactly an economically viable model. Of course, asserted Rebecca Schuman, MOOCs can be "great fun," but they're no replacement for college.

RUBRICS: Higher Ed Learning Outcomes Assmt Movement Moves Away from Standardized Tests, According to New National Survey For Immediate Release Contact: Carrie Johnson Associate Director of Marketing and Media Relations; 202-387-3760, ext. 811 Increasing Focus on Rubrics Applied to Student Work Products and on Student Engagement in Research and Hands-On Projects Washington, DC—February 17, 2016—The Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) released today the third report from a national survey of Chief Academic Officers (CAOs) conducted by Hart Research Associates. Two earlier reports from the 2015 survey summarized findings related to general education redesign, high-impact teaching practices, and priorities for advancing diversity, equity, and underserved student success. Key Findings: Consensus on Learning Outcomes Eight-five percent of CAOs report that their institution has a common set of intended learning outcomes that apply to all students. Most Institutions Assessing Learning Outcomes Report Using Rubrics Applied to Student Work

Critical Thinking Testing and Assessment The purpose of assessment in instruction is improvement. The purpose of assessing instruction for critical thinking is improving the teaching of discipline based thinking (historical, biological, sociological, mathematical thinking…). It is to improve students’ abilities to think their way through content, using disciplined skill in reasoning. For deeper understanding of the relationship between critical thinking assessment and instruction, read the white paper on consequential validity by Richard Paul and Linda Elder: Consequential Validity: Using Assessment to Drive Instruction The Foundation for Critical Thinking offers assessment instruments which share in the same general goal: to enable educators to gather evidence relevant to determining the extent to which instruction is teaching students to think critically (in the process of learning content). The following instruments are available to generate evidence relevant to critical thinking teaching and learning:

Measuring What Matters: Defining Outcomes in HE It should come as no surprise to anyone who reads this blog that outcomes in higher education are important to me. I think proving return on investment (ROI) is increasingly important to students and to the continued success of higher education, and to do that, you need to measure the outcomes of education. But what do we mean when we talk about outcomes? In higher education, I think most of us agree that student outcomes are important and that we should focus on improving them. What we don’t agree on is what outcomes we want to improve. What’s our rubric for success when we’re talking about student outcomes? As Peter Drucker once said, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.” These are probably the strongest outcomes to measure because, for the most part, they are quantifiable and people care about them. Most schools track these outcomes out of necessity; knowing how many students are enrolling, moving from term to term and graduating is vital to the basic function of a school.

Congress Seeks to Establish New Student Data System with College Transparency Act -- Campus Technology Policy Congress Seeks to Establish New Student Data System with College Transparency Act A new bipartisan bill introduced this week in the United States Senate and House of Representatives aims to increase transparency on higher education outcomes. Statements from the Senate and House seem to downplay security and privacy issues in favor of the potential to help students make more informed choices about postsecondary education. "Today's students and their families need accurate, accessible, and comprehensive information in order to choose the college that is the best fit for their individual needs," wrote Senators Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) in a fact sheet on the bill. "Education is the single best investment a person can make in today's economy. The bill puts security and privacy protection for the postsecondary student data system in the hands of the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).