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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 LearningAuthentic Assessment & EngagementAssessment

Mobile tech offers potential for formative assessment, authentic learning Mobile learning has potential for continuous assessment, ‘out-of-the-box’ instruction Policy makers and educators should not ignore the fact that mobile technology holds great potential for student engagement, continuous formative assessment, and authentic learning experiences, according to speakers during a Brookings Institution panel on mobile learning. During opening remarks, Peggy Johnson, executive vice president at Qualcomm Technologies and president of Global Market Development, noted that e-Rate reform should include an emphasis on mobile learning’s potential to transform brick-and-mortar school walls into virtual walls. Learning is 24/7, and the e-Rate should reflect that change, as well as mobile technology’s role. “We can’t continue to education students by ignoring the technology that is essential to our lives,” she said. One of the most likely things to limit mobile learning’s potential is the “old wine in new bottles,” phenomenon, said panelist Chris Dede, Timothy E.

What is "Authentic" Assessment? Whitney: The School of the Future is a six through twelve public school in District Two in New York City. It's located on the corner of 22nd Street and Lexington Avenue in Manhattan. John: I have to usually answer why it's called "School of the Future." Half the people think we beam people up to the Star Trek Enterprise. Stacy: And we're continuing to be a progressive school, but also to figure out how we are folding in assessment and folding in accountability. Esther: We're trying to give work that either mirrors what they might be doing later in life, or will prepare them for those kind of tasks, or is simply meaningful to them. Andy: In terms of authentic work within the school, it needs to be something that the student really cares about, and that the teacher really cares about. Whitney: And then the other piece is that making sure the task is a synthesis type of task. Mike: I think of authentic assessment as a window into the true understanding of the student.

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.

Untitled Document Exploring Narrative Assessment to Promote Empowerment of Educators and Parents of Children with Special Educational Needs Professor Joy Cullen Denise Williamson and Chris Lepper Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand Abstract The use of narrative assessment by early intervention teams is explored in two case studies in New Zealand where early intervention provisions are guided by an inclusive special education policy. Team members, including parents and teachers, received professional development on the use of learning story assessment, and shared their learning stories at planning meetings. The project highlighted the empowerment of parents and educators through the use of learning stories for assessment and planning. Background This paper reports on a project that introduced narrative assessment to early intervention teams with the aim of developing more effective collaborative assessment. Assessment Tensions The Narrative Assessment Project

Write a Great Authentic Task Project-based Learning engages students in projects that allow them to construct their own knowledge and develop authentic products while dealing with real-world issues. In order to challenge students on this level, it is helpful to frame their work with an authentic task. Authentic tasks require students to demonstrate proficiency by applying existing knowledge to solve a real-world problem. Authentic tasks create a bridge between what is learned in the classroom and why this knowledge is important to the world outside of the classroom. Authentic tasks are not meant to replace current classroom practice, but to provide another strategy to meet learning goals and measure student understanding. What does an authentic task look like? Immigration Station In the past four years, your city has had an influx of over 10,000 immigrants. Your task force will make a 15 minute presentation of what needs to be done. Authentic or Real-World Where might they work? Products A lawyer makes an argument.

Making Sure They Are Learning Sarah Kaufmann: I think of authentic assessment as my ability to teach each student where they actually are. I'm Sarah Kaufmann. I teach sixth grade humanities at School of the Future. In order to know where they actually are, I have to be able to assess them really specifically and in a variety of ways that are appropriate for that student, so that what I'm doing is every day giving that child an environment where they're challenged, where they feel good about what they're learning and they feel like they're learning. Stacy Goldstein: What's been amazing to watch in Sarah's class as a sixth grade teacher is also, she just is extremely rigorous in what she demands from the kids. And so her class really has high standards. Sarah Kaufmann: A lot of that work started with myself when I would think about reading and I would do Post-Its while I read to figure out what I was actually asking the students to do. My name's Eamon McCormick. Student 1: I just borrow Owen's description--

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.

What Are Learning Objectives? (NOTE: The below links will open in a new browser tab or window) A learning objective should describe what students should know or be able to do at the end of the course that they couldn't do before. Learning objectives should be about student performance. Good learning objectives shouldn't be too abstract ("the students will understand what good literature is"); too narrow ("the students will know what a ground is"); or be restricted to lower-level cognitive skills ("the students will be able to name the countries in Africa."). Each individual learning objective should support the overarching goal of the course, that is, the thread that unites all the topics that will be covered and all the skills students should have mastered by the end of the semester. Writing Learning Objectives In a web search you will find many different models for writing learning objectives. Skills: What students should be able to do by the time the course is completed. Learning Objectives and Measurable Outcomes

How Do Rubrics Help? Rubrics are multidimensional sets of scoring guidelines that can be used to provide consistency in evaluating student work. They spell out scoring criteria so that multiple teachers, using the same rubric for a student's essay, for example, would arrive at the same score or grade. Rubrics are used from the initiation to the completion of a student project. They provide a measurement system for specific tasks and are tailored to each project, so as the projects become more complex, so do the rubrics. Rubrics are great for students: they let students know what is expected of them, and demystify grades by clearly stating, in age-appropriate vocabulary, the expectations for a project. They also help students see that learning is about gaining specific skills (both in academic subjects and in problem-solving and life skills), and they give students the opportunity to do self-assessment to reflect on the learning process. There are two common types of rubrics: team and project rubrics.

Free Resources and Tools for "Authentic" Assessment The key to innovations in assessment and curriculum planning are trust, transparency, and collaboration -- and providing the professional development and training teachers need to succeed. Credit: Tom LeGoff Note: The School of the Future is part of a network of New York schools that develops and uses its own assessment techniques, referred to as DYOs. Resources On This Page: Do Your Own (DYO) Assessment Examples, Rubrics, Data, and Data Analysis Examples of criteria used in authentic assessment Back to Top Skills Spirals and Tracking Sheets Ideas for moving curriculum into a circular pattern and tracking performance to expose students to a wide variety of topics over and over again as the material gets more challenging SOF's Instuctional Tools for Teachers Lesson planning guides, date-driven decision making tools, discussion protocols, and teacher observation forms Tools for Developing a High School Humanities Project -- Persepolis Schedules and Other Resources Websites and Readings

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: