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How Should We Measure Student Learning? The Many Forms of Assessment

How Should We Measure Student Learning? The Many Forms of Assessment
Linda: The United States is at a moment where it could really transform its assessment systems. Most of our testing is multiple choice tests, pick one answer out of five, which is something you will never do in applying knowledge in the real world. Our assessments need to evolve to reflect the skills and knowledge that we actually value and that we need schools to teach and our children to learn. Human beings are naturally learners. We are learning every moment of every day. In school, we have particular things to learn and we know that students learn more effectively when we're clear about what the goals are. Chinasa: I kind of like, I want like a goal in my head about what to do with information that I get. Erin: I look at the beginning of the year and I say, what are the big ideas that I want students to know in the whole year and what are the major skills I want them to be able to do? Linda: Assessment should occur early and often and throughout the process. Student: Connection.

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10 ways to assess learning without tests… A tweet by @wmchamberlain which caught my eye the other day, was the catalyst for this 10 ways post. Today’s #edchat discussion about the arts got me thinking further (as always). The arts can be integrated across other disciplines and can add another powerful layer to learning, be it history, maths, literature or bible! (but that can be another post). For now, why not replace some traditional testing with opportunities for creative expression? Rubrics for Assessment A collection of rubrics for assessing portfolios, group work/cooperative learning, concept map, research process/ report, PowerPoint, oral presentation, web page, blog, wiki, and other social media projects. Quick Links to Rubrics Social Media Project Rubrics Wiki RubricCriteria for assessing individual and group Wiki contributions. Blog RubricAssess individual blog entries, including comments on peers' blogs. Twitter RubricAssess learning during social networking instructional assignments.

Using Standards and Assessments:Why Standardized Tests Don't Measure Educational Quality W. James Popham A standardized test is any examination that's administered and scored in a predetermined, standard manner. Assessing learning without tests - The Washington Post . Courtesy of The Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth In this era in which standardized tests are the be-all and end-all of accountability, it may seem impossible to imagine a teacher evaluating how well students are learning without giving them a test. Joanne Yatvin actually did it and she explains it in this post. Yatvin is a past president of the National Council of Teachers of English who now supervises student teachers for Portland State University.

Grant Wiggins: Defining Assessment Grant Wiggins is a nationally recognized assessment expert who has been working in assessment reform for more than twenty-five years. He is president of the educational consulting firm Authentic Education, and with Jay McTighe, co-author of Understanding by Design, an award-winning framework for curriculum design used around the world. In this interview, Wiggins shares his thoughts on performance assessments, standardized tests, and more. Wiggins has published several articles for Edutopia.org. In 2002, he wrote Toward Genuine Accountability: The Case for a New State Assessment System. In 2006, he wrote Healthier Testing Made Easy: The Idea of Authentic Assessment.

Testing - Testing, Assessment, And Excellence The mad rush to embrace high-stakes testing says to me that we are now reaping what years of superficial indifference have sown. That is, for years educators have not held themselves accountable, so now business leaders and politicians are creating systems to hold schools accountable. As I will explain, the move to create standards is out of synch, and we're now testing with a vengeance, before the system has had time to get ready. ... Behind the Standards What Schools Could Use Instead Of Standardized Tests : NPR Ed Close your eyes for a minute and daydream about a world without bubble tests. Education Week recently reported that some Republican Senate aides are doing more than dreaming — they're drafting a bill that would eliminate the federal mandate on standardized testing. Annual tests for every child in reading and math in grades 3 through 8, plus one in high school, have been a centerpiece of federal education law since 2002. No Child Left Behind, the current incarnation of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, requires them. But this law has been overdue for reauthorization since before President Obama took office. The Senate plans to take the matter up early this year.

Why Students in Some Countries Do Better - Education Next In the K-12 education market, where countries the world over publicly finance and manage the great majority of their schools, the institutions and policies established by various levels of government must create incentives for school personnel to use their resources in ways that maximize performance. In the private sector, where firms are disciplined by market competition, it is usually assumed that resources are used effectively because firms would otherwise fail to profit. Inefficiency leads to higher costs and higher prices–practically an invitation to competitors to lure away customers. But the relative lack of competition in the K-12 education sector tends to dull the incentives to improve quality and restrain costs. Moreover, in the public system, the ability of parents and students to ensure that they receive a high-quality education is constrained by the enormous obstacles to leaving a bad school.

5 Ideas to Prepare Students for Success Without Standardized Testing  Just type the word "testing" into the search box on Facebook and you'll find thousands of parents distraught over the standardized tests their children are being forced to take despite the fact that these parents know it is not in the best interests for their children who in many cases are becoming physically ill and emotionally traumatized by the experience of sitting for up to two weeks straight filling out bubble sheets and answering prompts. Schools are reluctant and even misleading when it comes to informing parents they can simply opt out often arguing that although they acknowledge that it might not be in the best interest of the child, without standardized tests, everything will fall apart. For many there is no alternative imaginable as in this comment from a graduate student studying to be a teacher. I can't STAND standardized tests. Every professor (and grad student) at my teaching college hates them.

Classroom Assessment The values for reliability coefficients range from 0 to 1.0. A coefficient of 0 means no reliability and 1.0 means perfect reliability. Since all tests have some error, reliability coefficients never reach 1.0. Generally, if the reliability of a standardized test is above .80, it is said to have very good reliability; if it is below .50, it would not be considered a very reliable test. Validity refers to the accuracy of an assessment -- whether or not it measures what it is supposed to measure. Even if a test is reliable, it may not provide a valid measure.

Test-Taking Cements Knowledge Better Than Studying, Researchers Say The research, published online Thursday in the journal Science, found that students who read a passage, then took a test asking them to recall what they had read, retained about 50 percent more of the information a week later than students who used two other methods. One of those methods — repeatedly studying the material — is familiar to legions of students who cram before exams. The other — having students draw detailed diagrams documenting what they are learning — is prized by many teachers because it forces students to make connections among facts. These other methods not only are popular, the researchers reported; they also seem to give students the illusion that they know material better than they do.

Educators Spend Four Weeks Per Year Assessing Student Reading Skills  Embedded Assessment Reduces Cost, Dependence on Traditional Testing and Ties Data to Instruction Data-driven instruction is an approach embraced by most educators, but establishing a process and a school culture truly focused on data has proven to be an elusive goal for many schools. Most data-driven approaches focus on an assessment-laden routine of testing students, gathering and analyzing data, and then making instructional decisions based on these findings.

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