Approaches to Inclusive eAssessment


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Slides from a presentation giving an overvies of the principles of designing and delivering electronic assessments that are designed with the diverse needs of learners in mind. This was a webinar given on 5th September 2012, one of the virtual sessions of the eAssessment Scotland 2012 conference.

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Approaches to Inclusive eAssessment

  1. 1. Approaches to Inclusive eAssessment David Sloan 5th September 2012 eAssessment Scotland 2012
  2. 2. Today’s presentation• The role of e-assessment in an inclusive learning and teaching environment – Primary focus is disability, but also relevant to distance learners, mobile device use• The learner perspective: creating an inclusive assessment environment• The teacher perspective: creating an inclusive electronic assessment• Focus on general principles and best practice – No platform- or tool-specific information David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 2
  3. 3. 1 MOTIVATION FOR INCLUSIVE E-ASSESSMENT David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 3
  4. 4. The inclusivity potential of e- assessment• Overcoming accessibility limitations of the physical world – Simulation – Remote access via video or audio• Flexibility of presentation of assessment – Customisation of appearance and behaviour – Reuse potential/maintenance over time• Meeting organisational legal and social responsibilities David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 4
  6. 6. Learner -- AccessibilityWhat does a learner with accessibility needs require from an e-assessment?1. An accessible assessment environment2. Fairness in the nature of the assessment instrument David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 6
  7. 7. Making the assessment environment accessible• Physical accessibility of venue• Accessibility of the assessment’s host platform: appropriate accommodations for a learner’s accessibility requirements – Is the required assistive technology (AT) that a learner needs available? – Or can the learner use their own AT? – Does the environment enable a learner to make necessary adjustments to display or input device behaviour? David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 7
  8. 8. Fairness in nature of assessment• A balance between pedagogic aims of the assessment and sensory, physical and cognitive demands placed on a learner• For example, think carefully about questions where the format demands: – High visual acuity – Colour perception – Fine mouse control – Reading text in a particular format – Filling in a complex form David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 8
  9. 9. 3 ACCESSIBILITY FROM THE TEACHER’SPERSPECTIVE David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 9
  10. 10. Teacher -- Accessibility• Key principles: – Anticipate and accommodate diversity in learner needs – Design each e-assessment to be as accessible as possible • Enabling an individual learner’s own assistive technology to do its job – Consider aggregating multiple assessment methods to accommodate diverse needs David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 10
  11. 11. Accessible Assessments• For accessibility solutions to work as they should, digital content must be designed in a way that allows them to do so• Basic principles (from W3C Web Accessibility Initiative): 1. Allow people to perceive assessment content 2. Allow people to operate assessment content 3. Allow people to understand assessment content 4. Provide assessment content that is robust across different environments David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 11
  12. 12. Principle 1. Perceivable• Provide alternatives to graphical content for people who can’t see it: – A text alternative for an image (the HTML alt attribute) – A longer text description for a complex image such as a graph – Audio description for a video• Make content easier to see – Avoid low contrast text/background colour schemes – Use animated content with care• Provide alternatives for audio content for people who can’t hear it: – Captions (better) or transcript – Signed translation (if possible) David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 12
  13. 13. Principle 1. Perceivable• Provide alternatives to textual content for people who have difficulty reading or processing it: – Static images: photos, graphs, diagrams – Video, animations – Signed content• Provide alternatives to audio content for people who can hear it but have difficulty understanding it – Subtitles David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 13
  14. 14. Principle 2. Operable• Support keyboard operation – All functionality accessible via the keyboard – No keyboard ‘traps’ – Alternatives to drag-and-drop• Give learners enough time to respond – Be very careful about time-limits on requiring actions• Support efficient navigation through the assessment – Clear links, headings, ‘skip links’ – Logically labelled and positioned form controls – Be careful with “multiple multiple choice” questions David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 14
  15. 15. Principle 3. Understandable• Make sure content is comprehensible: – Language appropriate to the target audience – Changes in natural language identified• Apply predictable design and behaviour – Consistency in page layout, terminology, actions• Give input assistance – Help in providing correct input to forms (where appropriate) – Appropriate error handling David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 15
  16. 16. Principle 4. Robust• Provide content that is available and usable across different browsing platforms - legacy and future – Valid HTML and CSS markup – Using ‘accessibility-supported’ technology• Watch out when copying content into an assessment authoring tool from another source David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 16
  17. 17. Evaluating Assessment Accessibility• Check principles of accessibility have been met before piloting an e-assessment• Act on results by amending the assessment before use - and if you can’t…• …try to deal with accessibility shortcomings – Understand location, nature and impact – Understand if you/a colleague can fix them or whether it’s a vendor issue with the delivery platform – Developing and implementing a strategy for dealing with shortcomings (short term workaround, long term fix) David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 17
  18. 18. Resources• W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG):• WebAIM - general advice on web accessibility:• Techdis: Accessibility in e-Assessment: g_pages/Inclusive_E-Assessment• Sheffield Hallam University: Accessible Assessments: David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 18
  19. 19. THANKYOU!email: @sloandrblog: www.58sound.comwork: --- David Sloan: Inclusive eAssessment 19