¶ 2 Leave a comment on paragraph 2 0 Open assessment or one may call it authentic assessment is an important facet of open learning, since it empowers students to be active partners in evaluating their progress and the progresses of their peers.
¶ 3 Leave a comment on paragraph 3 0 How well do multiple-choice tests really evaluate student understanding and achievement? Many educators believe that there is a more effective assessment alternative. These teachers use testing strategies that do not focus entirely on recalling facts. Instead, they ask students to demonstrate skills and concepts they have learned. This strategy is called authentic assessment.
¶ 4 Leave a comment on paragraph 4 0 Authentic assessment aims to evaluate students’ abilities in ‘real-world’ contexts. In other words, students learn how to apply their skills to authentic tasks and projects. Authentic assessment does not encourage rote learning and passive test-taking. Instead, it focuses on students’ analytical skills; ability to integrate what they learn; creativity; ability to work collaboratively; and written and oral expression skills. It values the learning process as much as the finished product.
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- do science experiments
- conduct social-science research
- write stories and reports
- read and interpret literature
- solve math problems that have real-world applications
¶ 7 Leave a comment on paragraph 7 0 Authentic assessment utilizes performance samples – learning activities that encourage students to use higher-order thinking skills. There are five major types of performance samples:
¶ 9 Leave a comment on paragraph 9 0 Performance assessments test students’ ability to use skills in a variety of authentic contexts. They frequently require students to work collaboratively and to apply skills and concepts to solve complex problems. Short- and long-term tasks include such activities as:
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- writing, revising, and presenting a report to the class
- conducting a week-long science experiment and analyzing the results
- working with a team to prepare a position in a classroom debate
¶ 12 Leave a comment on paragraph 12 0 Many teachers use short investigations to assess how well students have mastered basic concepts and skills. Most short investigations begin with a stimulus, like a math problem, political cartoon, map, or excerpt from a primary source. The teacher may ask students to interpret, describe, calculate, explain, or predict. These investigations may use enhanced multiple-choice questions. Or they may use concept mapping, a technique that assesses how well students understand relationships among concepts.
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- a brief written or oral answer
- a mathematical solution
- a drawing
- a diagram, chart, or graph
¶ 17 Leave a comment on paragraph 17 0 A portfolio documents learning over time. This long-term perspective accounts for student improvement and teaches students the value of self-assessment, editing, and revision. A student portfolio can include:
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- journal entries and reflective writing
- peer reviews
- artwork, diagrams, charts, and graphs
- group reports
- student notes and outlines
- rough drafts and polished writing
¶ 20 Leave a comment on paragraph 20 0 Self-assessment requires students to evaluate their own participation, process, and products. Evaluative questions are the basic tools of self-assessment. Students give written or oral responses to questions like:
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- What was the most difficult part of this project for you?
- What do you think you should do next?
- If you could do this task again, what would you do differently?
- What did you learn from this project?
¶ 22 Leave a comment on paragraph 22 0 Many teachers find that authentic assessment is most successful when students know what teachers expect. For this reason, teachers should always clearly define standards and expectations. Educators often use rubrics, or established sets of criteria, to assess student work.
¶ 23 Leave a comment on paragraph 23 0 Because authentic assessment emphasizes process and performance, it encourages students to practice critical-thinking skills and to get excited about the things they are learning.
¶ 24 Leave a comment on paragraph 24 0 You may also want to read Open Assessment” by Prof. Ulf Ehlers who introduces a number of reflections on Open Assessment that shall help you understand the potential impact of this practice in your daily work
¶ 26 Leave a comment on paragraph 26 0 One of the most interesting developments in Open Assessment is the Open Badges project by Mozilla. Through the project, everyone can issue “open badges”, which are digital indicators of skills learned inside or outside the classroom. Open Badges contain metadata indicating the badge issuer, criteria for the badge, and other information, all of which is hard-coded into the image file itself. The technology supports a range of badge types, developed in conjunction with the badge issuer. They can be issued by traditional educational institutions, professional bodies, community learning organizations, after-school programs, or online initiatives (including MOOCs).
Activity 5.4: Get an Open Badge
¶ 28 Leave a comment on paragraph 28 0 The best way to understand how Open Badges work is to get one. Start from this link: http://openbadges.org/earn/ and earn your first Open Badge, then share with the community what you think about Open Badges and if they are applicable in your daily work. Would students like the idea? Why yes? Why not?
¶ 29 Leave a comment on paragraph 29 0 Select a course that you have been teaching at your institution and develop your open assessment plan that you think you can implement while teaching the course.