Checklists

Purpose: To evaluate a student's performance against a specific list of clear criteria. Checklists are a way to articulate what students need to learn in order to make progress on a learning goal.

In EFF settings, checklists are used to list out or describe what the students need to do as they use the Standard for a particular purpose. Why, then, don't we just use the components of the standard as the checklist? Because the checklist should be contextualized by the activity you're working on and written for the particular level of the students. It's helpful to use the level descriptors in the performance continuum for the Standard to check that what you're including in your checklist isn't too difficult or easy for the level of your students.

Checklists have a simple yes/no format - either the item is observed or it isn't. If you also want to note how well the student performs each item, a rubric is a better tool (see the Rubrics tool). Often, checklists can be turned into rubrics by defining low, adequate, and high performance for each item on the list.

Process:

  • Make sure the learning goal is clear and that there is one Standard you are focusing on.
  • If possible, involve students in developing the checklist by asking them, "What real-life activity are we working toward? What do you need to be able to do in order to perform this activity well?"
  • Use the following tips to help you develop a list that will provide useful information.
  • Make sure each item is as specific and clear as possible.
  • Try not to use general terms that can be left up to interpretation such as "good" or "interesting".
  • Group items by categories and the categories by the sequence in which the activities are likely to take place.
  • Refer to the EFF performance continuum for that Standard to make sure your checklist is realistic for your students' level.

Sample Checklists

Below are two sample checklists for an oral presentation to the class. Students are working on this because many of them aspire to go on to higher education and are worried about the possibility of having to do formal class presentations. Although the teacher believes that papers are the more likely expectation in college, she sees this practice as being helpful for other student goals related to speaking clearly and succinctly. Notice how the "Speak so Others Can Understand" Standard is addressed and how the checklists are adapted for two different levels.

Oral presentation checklist

Standard: Speak so Others Can Understand Level: 4

Name _____________________________ Date. ___________________

1. Knowledge about the topic

Students need to:

_____ Know the topic/have something to say.

_____ Know and explain vocabulary related to the topic.

_____ Answer questions from the audience.

2. Delivery

Students need to:

_____ Respond to audience cues (if they don't understand, can't hear, etc.)

_____ Speak clearly and at an understandable pace.

_____ Use expression to make the presentation interesting.

3. Organization

Students need to:

_____ Introduce the topic (their purpose/why they chose it).

_____ Present ideas that make sense and flow one to the other.

_____ Have a conclusion.

_____ Invite audience questions or comments.



Oral presentation checklist

Standard: Speak so Others Can Understand Level: 2

Name ____________________________ Date. ___________________

1. Knowledge about the topic

Students need to:

_____ Know the topic/have something to say.

_____ Be able to explain 2-3 topic-related vocabulary words to the audience.

2. Delivery

Students need to:

_____ Look at the audience.

_____ Speak clearly.

_____ Check with the audience to see if they understand.

3. Organization

Students need to:

_____ Introduce the topic (their purpose/why they chose it).

_____ Present ideas or information in a logical sequence.

 

Used in Teaching/Learning Examples:

Preparing for Release

The School Break