West Roxbury, MA
Developing Quality Assessments
TLC Educational Solutions Strategy-Based Professional Development on-site workshops are specifically designed to provide the skills needed for educators to teach and interact with today’s students, “to stay on the cutting edge of their profession”. Educators are challenged to construct or select quality assessments to effectively measure what students know, understand, and are able to do. With the support of our TLC Educational Solutions Training Resource Manuals, which each workshop participant receives, step by step guidelines and strategies are provided and can be incorporated into the classroom. Whether at an on-site workshop or invitational seminar, we provide teachers and administrators with strategies designed to guide decisions necessary for quality assessment.
Selecting Assessment Types to Accurately Measure Skills and Understandings.
The assessment types available for determining what a student knows, understands, and is able to do have expanded greatly over the past few years. The question is, “Which type of assessment do I use to accurately gain information to support my purpose and my goals?” The overview of the Quality Criteria of Assessment and Assessment Types moves the teacher and administrator on the road to developing and/or selecting reliable measures to meet specific goals.
Developing Selected Response and Constructed Response Items
All assessments involve some sort of selected response or constructed response process. Specific criterion exist for each type of assessment to assure it is an accurate measure of student knowledge and skill. Understanding how to design or select assessment items that result in high quality assessments allows teachers to have accurate information to monitor and adjust instruction and provides support for fair grading practices.
Supporting Performance Assessments Using Rubrics to Inform Instruction and Validate Student Learning
Recognizing the value of Performance Assessments is the first step toward developing authentic experiences that measure the ability of students to apply their learning. The reliability and fairness of these assessments lies in the selection of rubric design and development of rubrics. Both teacher scoring rubrics and student-friendly rubrics for self and peer assessment have specific places in the learning process. Rubrics are not designed to directly translate into grades; however, research-based processes can be used to convert rubric scores into grades.
Assuring Universal Design and Removing Bias and Sensitive Issues in Assessment
Whether assessments measure what is intended and whether assessments are fair is impacted by the design features and absence of bias and unintentionally built in sensitive issues. Consideration for diverse student needs, from vision to culture, and life experiences, affects the measures of student learning and performance.
Raising Cognitive Demand and Rigor.
In education we recognize that instructional strategies are a key to raising the cognitive demand and rigor of student learning. Gaining skill in designing assessment items to raise cognitive demand without raising the difficulty level allows all students to gain more from their assessment experiences. Embedding components that reflect the level of confidence the student has in their answers, and their skill level makes that assessment a more powerful tool in the learning process.
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