Planning for the Collection of Evidence

  1. As you think about learning activities (the middle column in the planning guide shown here) you should also be thinking concurrently about assessment activities (the right hand column). Assessment activities provide some kind of evidence or "proof" of what has been learned. The Supports section of the toolkit contains a sampler of many kinds of assessment tools and processes. The proof may be some kind of teacher or peer observation such as the one described in the Tools section of the toolkit. These may be unstructured, as in the case of a teacher simply jotting down notes; a bit more structured, as in the case of learners jotting down words his or her classmate says; or even more structured, as in the case of the use of a carefully developed rubric, a learning portfolio, or a written quiz. In order to be counted as evidence an observation needs to be documented in some way. In the sample activity described here Klaus first asks students to brainstorm what good performance of a factory tour guide would look like. He uses this information and his own ideas to develop a checklist, using the model in the Tools section of the toolkit. The checklist will be used both by peers who observe the students as they conduct a semi-formal role play and by Klaus, who moves around the room while the role plays are going on spot checking to see how students are doing and recording this information on a similar checklist

  2. Another equally important part of the assessment process involves deciding on how you will interpret the evidence. This means using specific criteria to evaluate how well the student can perform the activity. For example, when your students participate in their final role play, you will observe their performances to see whether or not students are becoming proficient in speaking so that others can understand according to the definition of the standard at the performance level you have selected. In this case Klaus uses a simple system to "score" the results on the checklist to see if students are at a basic, proficient or advanced level with respect to those skills. In this case the rating constitutes an interpretation of observed evidence of performance. The collection and interpretation of evidence may be more or less formal at different stages of the teaching and learning process. In this case, the assessment is fairly informal. Klaus will discuss the results with students individually later in the month when one-on-one conference sessions are planned.
  3. At the last session related to this activity Klaus asked students to rate how prepared they feel to serve as a tour guide and their level of comfort in doing so using a simple rating sheet he developed. Although he did not have time to meet with students individually to discuss his observations of their performance, he made a note to do so at the end of the semester one-on-one meetings that were coming up soon. He also used the worksheets in Steps 7 and 8 of the toolkit to help students to think as a group about what they had learned and what they would like to work on next.
How will we show we know it? What evidence will we have? How will we interpret the evidence?
Share a final teacher-prepared checklist of what to look for in a "good" tour guide

Ask students to work in groups of three with one acting as tour guide, another as visitor and a third as observer. Ask the observer to evaluate how the tour guide does.

While students are engaged in the role play move between groups spot checking student performance using the same checklist.
Peer rating of role paly using checklist

Teacher rating of role play using checklist

Student self-evaluation (to be completed in last session)
Informal rating scale based on results described in the checklist

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