Making Assessment Simple … & Easy For the members of the University Assessment Committee What is assessment? One definition: Assessment is a conversation about student learning, enriched by data. What is the goal of assessment? The improvement of student learning. History Assessment has existed for many years and became a major issue about 1982. Assessment jump-started in 1993 - Second Edition of “Classroom Assessment Techniques: A handbook for College Teachers” by Angelo and Cross. The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools Mandated assessment plans by the end of 1995. Now, turn over the brightly colored sheet, read the message, and tear up the sheet. What are examples of data for student learning? Direct measures of student learning Indirect measures of student learning Non-measures of student learning Direct measure of student learning can include: Portfolios or juried exhibitions Professional licensing exams (when scores by section are available) Locally-developed tests, etc. Indirect measures of student learning include: Alumni and employer surveys Exit interviews with graduating students Job placement data or graduation rates (All have programmatic significance) Non-measures of student learning include: Publication rates of faculty Curriculum or program reviews Most external reviews of professional programs Table discussion: Topics from the Collaboration Workshop (6 min) Discussion leaders: Participants in the Workshop Reporter: The faculty member whose birthday is nearest May 13 How do I start assessment in my classes? (See the “Six Easy Steps” handout 1. Identify learning outcomes (on-line Teaching goals Inventory) 2. Select classroom assessment techniques (CATs) that will match your teaching goals The next steps: 3. Conduct assessments and collect information 4. Summarize and evaluate the data And then: 5. 6. Share the information with students (Closing the loop with students) Use the information to improve student learning (Close the loop at the course level) Now, return to Step #2 or Step #3 “Bloom’s Taxonomy” – Where does your class fit? Lowest: 1) Knowledge 2) Comprehension Higher: 3) Application 4) Analysis Highest: 5) Synthesis 6) Evaluation Are we asking enough of our students? Students frequently complain about the amount of work, BUT When completing national surveys, students indicate that they would have liked to have been challenged and encouraged more. Common faculty question #1 What’s in it for me? Knowledge of student abilities and potential Increased student satisfaction Increased student performance Common question #2 Doesn’t assessment take valuable class time? Increased rate of progress in class means more material covered (“Stumbling points” of students are addressed earlier.) Assessments can be incorporated into Blackboard Common question #3 Which CATS did I use? Pre-test / post-test (Initial scores averaged 25 – 40, final scores averaged 75) Muddiest point / Minute papers Analysis of individual examination questions Common question #4 What other CATs might I have used? RSQC2 (Recall, Summarize, Question, Connect, Comment) Problem Recognition Skills Process Analysis Approximate Analogies (A is to B as …) But my teaching goals are different! No problem! Just select or develop CATs that match your teaching goals and the amount of time that you wish to provide. How do I start to evaluate student learning? Determine your priorities for students Select the procedures that you will use Use the assessment techniques in your classes How do I complete the loop? Summarize the information Share the information with students Use the information to enhance future classes When am I finished? Only when you share the information with your departmental Curriculum Committee and with your department Chair or Head for inclusion in the unit’s assessment report! Then, start assessment in your next class!