assessment in higher education
There are two main forms of assessment often used within the online classroom. Both formative and summative assessments evaluate student learning and assist instructors in guiding instructional planning and delivery. While the purpose of a summative assessment is to check for mastery following the instruction, formative assessment focuses on informing teachers in ways to improve student learning during lesson delivery (Gualden, 2010). Each type of assessment has a specific place and role within education, both traditional and online.
Our interest in more learner-centered instruction has changed the way many of us think about teaching as well as what we do in the classroom. We are devoting more energy to getting students involved during class. We are trying to give them more opportunities to practice those learning skills that expedite learning. We let them summarize the content; rather than doing it for them. We try to have them ask more questions than we do. We design activities which encourage them to learn from and with each other.
More and more, assessments are playing a key role in your institution’s accreditation and funding. And more and more, they’re shaping your administration’s decisions about proper allocation of limited resources. This seminar will show you will show how to make sure your assessments are producing valid, meaningful measures of student success.
audio Online Seminar • Recorded on Wednesday, June 29th, 2011
Higher ed institutions need to take time at regular intervals to engage in program revision. Otherwise, they risk engaging in pointless assessments that reveal little and fail to lead to measurable improvements in teaching and learning experiences. This seminar provides an overview of the latest strategies for updating and managing an effective and meaningful learning assessment program.
Video Online Seminar • Recorded on Thursday, July 22nd, 2010
Are our students learning? Are they developing? Are we having an impact? These questions are only a small sample of those that faculty ask before, during, and after each course that they teach. Faculty often attempt to answer such questions using the evidence they have—student remarks during class and office hours, student performance on examinations or homework assignments, student comments solicited via teaching evaluations, and their own classroom observations. While these forms of evidence can be useful, such informal assessments also can be misleading, particularly because they are generally not systematic or fully representative.
Given student motivation to get grades and the prevalence of cheating, most faculty would never seriously consider letting students grade their own work. However, self-grading, especially of homework, does accrue some significant benefits. It can move students away from doing homework for points to making them more aware of why and how doing problems helps them learn. If students grade their own work, they see exactly where they are making mistakes. And they obtain that feedback far sooner than if the instructor collects the homework, grades it, and then returns it some days later.
Meaningful program assessment requires faculty participation. The challenge of getting faculty involved and staying involved lies in convincing them that the benefits of educational assessment are worth any additional work it generates.