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Assessing Student Learning


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Presented for the Assessment Symposia for Wichita State University Libraries.

Published in: Education

Assessing Student Learning

  1. 1. ASSESSING STUDENT LEARNING Photo Credit: giulia.forsythe via Compfight cc
  2. 2. EVALUATIONS vs ASSESSMENT ✓ How well did you teach the class? ✓ Were the students satisfied with the experience? ✓ What did the students learn? ✓ How effective is an instruction program?
  4. 4. “TOPIC EVALUATION” ! Which topics presented today were most useful? Which topics were least useful? What would you like to learn more about? Photo Credit: billsoPHOTO via Compfight cc
  6. 6. INFORMAL use of perceptions, reflections or secondary evidence to make inferences about student learning. FORMAL measures of learning are based on student performance or demonstration the learning itself. PhotoCredit:UnhinderedbyTalentviaCompfightcc vs
  7. 7. FORMATIVE ASSESSMENT improve learning identify strengths and weaknesses gauge students’ comprehension Examples: concept maps submit one or two sentences identifying the main point of a lecture ongoing research journals Photo Credit: SpreadTheMagic via Compfight cc
  8. 8. formative examples ! reflective writing “think alouds” self or peer-evaluations sentence summaries demonstrations tweets blog reflections
  9. 9. SUMMATIVE ASSESSMENT gauges understanding of a unit or course comparing student work against some standard or benchmark often high stakes Examples: midterm exam final project presentation research paper senior portfolio Photo Credit: venspired via Compfight cc
  10. 10. research papers ask instructor for a range of student papers (2 good, 2 average, 2 bad) & analyze research portfolios observe class presentations or speeches annotated bibliographies embed a quiz in Blackboard summative examples
  11. 11. Instruct students write a paragraph critically evaluating a source Have students construct a citation map or a concept map Observe students working in groups Have students email you 2 peer reviewed articles ! Have students complete a worksheet Divide students into groups and have each group do a mini presentation Write “Letters to the Editor” Instruct students to write a research reflection (via social media or Blackboard) after a couple of days Do you have a little time . . . . . . or a lot?
  12. 12. “minute paper” ! What is the most significant or meaningful thing you have learned during this session? What questions remain in your mind following this session?
  13. 13. “recall & summarize” In the order of importance, please list the most important concepts or skills presented in this session. ! Please summarize the above points into a single sentence. ! Additional comments or suggestions?
  14. 14. “transfer & apply”! What are some interesting techniques or strategies that were presented or occurred to you from today's session? How can you apply these techniques or strategies to your research? By Charlieowen1994 (photo Previously published: no) [GFDL ( or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://], via Wikimedia Commons
  15. 15. “muddiest point” ! “What was the muddiest point in [the lecture, training, library session worksheet, etc.]?” The term “muddiest” means “most unclear” or “most confusing.”
  16. 16. “What will you do differently?” What is the most important thing you learned from this class? When working on research projects and searching for information, what will you do differently based on what you learned in this session?
  17. 17. scenario-based exercises
  18. 18. Pre- and post-tests Faculty feedback Assignment analysis Follow-up sessions more data collection methods Photo Credit: Karl Horton via Compfight cc
  20. 20. PERFORMANCE BASED ASSESSMENT Authentic learning experiences Application of knowledge and skills It's like teaching someone to ride a bike! Transferability Photo Credit: EdYourdon via Compfight cc
  21. 21. RUBRICS Photo Credit: Ken Whytock via Compfight cc
  22. 22. RUBRIC CHARACTERISTICS Matrix of performance levels for a given task Professional competencies or class outcomes Breaks performance into levels Beginning (lowest) Developing (second) Accomplished (third) Mastery (highest) Identifies performance characteristics for each level Photo Credit: jenhegna1 via Compfight cc
  23. 23. Example: Communication research class As a result of the library instruction session, students will be able to: recognize that existing information can be combined with original thought, experimentation, and/or analysis to produce new information. select efficient and effective approaches for accessing information needed for research. analyze the use of scholarly sources to in order to complete research for a marketing plan.
  24. 24. FINALTHOUGHTS . . .
  25. 25. set clear expectations Examples: Find a minimum of 3 citations. Evaluate a source according to credibility, authority, accuracy, relevance, and purpose. Locate 4 peer reviewed sources. Discuss at least 2 reasons why a source is relevant to your topic. Photo Credit: Gary Bridgman via Compfight cc List out criteria for assessment.
  26. 26. to make your life (& the students’ lives) easier, remember: Tie assessment to learning outcomes Self-reflection doesn't tell you about learning Tests & quizzes aren't always reliable instruments Always try to provide feedback as quickly as possible Focus on transferable skills Try to stick to performance-based assessment (essays, worksheets) - rubrics make these easy to score Photo Credit: Isobel T via Compfight cc