Assessment Plan for IFE

The assessment of student performance in this class serves two purposes:

1. In the short term, it provides real-time feedback which can help the student develop skills and knowledge needed to improve their ability to make contributions to the class.

2. In the long term, it gives each participant data on their readiness to enroll in more challenging and rigorous imaging science classes.

The general principles used to develop the assessment plan for the fall quarter include:

  • Inputs from multiple sources. The most accurate assessment of performance will result when the viewpoints and opinions of multiple individuals are considered, including that of the individual being graded.

  • Based on growth, progress, and contribution. Performance for each individual will be assessed on the basis of their own personal growth and progress as an individual, and their contributions as a member of the group.

  • Frequent, timely and relevant data. Each person should have ample opportunity to reflect and act on information they receive regarding their performance on this project.

The assessment plan includes several elements. Each element will contribute to the overall assessment of the students’ performance. Currently each element is weighted equally. The elements are as follows:

  • Weekly goals and activity reports. At the beginning of each week, students will publish a set of personal and group goals for that week. Students will write a brief activity report each week which should reflect progress made toward achieving those goals, along with any other relevant activities or accomplishments.

  • Bi-weekly peer reviews. Students will be paired up with partners for the purpose of having confidential, bi-weekly peer reviews outside of the classroom setting. During these sessions, students should strive to provide honest constructive feedback to their partner which can help them enhance their contributions to the project.

  • Monthly one-on-one meetings with the instructor. These meetings will give each student the opportunity to discuss directly with the instructor any concerns or issues which may have a bearing on their performance on this project. They will also allow the instructor to give each student a mid-term assessment of their performance to date, and suggest ways to improve, if necessary.

  • “360 degree” reviews. At the end of the term each student will provide an honest assessment of his or her own performance. In addition, each person will evaluate, and will be evaluated by, all other participants in the project, including their peers, the instructor, the teaching assistant, the faculty mentors, and any other regular contributors to the project. A student-developed survey will assist each of the participants perform this review.

Documents for Assessment

These are the questionnaires we will use to assess each other and that we will ask those who observe us to fill out so that we can constantly work on improving our teamwork and research skills:

Based on the following external resources:

Nadya Spice

Maggie Castle

Wolfe, Edward. "Student Reflection in Portfolio Assessment." , (1996).

The work “Adding Structure to Unstructured Research Courses” studied the best ways to evaluate students enrolled in research courses that are mostly unstructured. It aims to give methods of clarifying goals, increasing organization, and evaluation. It tries to add some structure to the class to help better communication between professor and student and help give the course a timeline. Important basics that are given are to create a syllabus, schedule regular meetings, and establish e-mail communication all which this Imaging Science course has already completed. The article then goes on to talk about the ways of tracking progress. A few recommended are to keep a documentation binder of student’s work and contributions, give oral summations(which there is already scheduled), and complete various course evaluations throughout the process. This course has scheduled many ways that this article has discussed including planning research, oral summations, and course evaluations (which i’m guessing will occur). One of the new ideas which might not be planned is to keep a work documentation binder. It is a binder that can be organized anyway the student wants, but basically provides the teachers with evidence of their work and serves as somewhat of a portfolio. Another way of going around this basic concept is to keep a journal of what you think your own progress is each week. This would include what you’ve learned about the material and about your professional growth. It could also include your thoughts on the process of this project and reactions to what is happening.

Sawmiller, A. (2010). Classroom blogging: What is the role in science learning?.Clearing House, 83(2), 44-48.

This article encourages integrating technology in the classroom focusing on the tool of blogging. One of the main benefits of blogging the article touches on is the practice of scientific literacy which I thought connected greatly to the Freshman Imaging Project and its goal of incorporating the writing department. The article explains how there is a technological disconnect from in the classroom learning and at home learning. Classroom learning and literacy incorporates a pen and paper, where as todays students go home and use technology as their way of learning. With students reading and writing electronically blogging is a great way to connect the out of school and in school learning practices. The blog is a great tool because it allows users to share information, videos, pictures, updates, journal entries, and just about anything with teachers, faculty, parents, and basically anyone with internet access. This would be cool for our project because not only does it give a way for our teachers to evaluate us but it gives other faculty, our parents, and anyone interested the ability to evaluate, comment, give advice, and follow our progress. With a large audience it gives participants motivation to do their best work and to share it. The article also explains that because blogs our public the quality of the writing on the blogs increases greatly. Blogs support collaboration with students and teachers, and allows every participant to express their ideas and interact with each other more freely. I think that is what this project is all about, working with each other, accepted help and comments, and tracking our progress so people in the future can see what we did.

Dan Goldberg

Assessment and Evaluation Practices in Outdoor, Experiential, Environmentally-Focused Integrated and Interdisciplinary Programs

This thesis is about types of education and effective types of assessments associated with them. Before defining each assessment type, Dube creates a checklist to form an effective assessment.

  • Identify the achievement targets (goals, objectives, expectations, standards) that you expect your students to hit. These must be the focus of your assessment exercises [task] and scoring procedures [criteria].
  • Select proper assessment methods that accurately reflect your achievement expectations
  • Assemble high-quality assessment exercises [tasks] into an array (a sample) that spans the full range of your expectations and thus leads you to confident conclusions about student achievements
  • Anticipate and eliminate all sources of bias that creep into your assessments.
  • Communicate assessment results in a timely and understandable manner into the hands of their intended user(s). (Dube 38)

This is his general layout for all assessment types he writes about. The closest assessment that relates to what we are doing is what he refers to as an “authentic assessment”. “The term ‘authentic assessment’ conveys the idea that assessments should engage students in applying knowledge and skills to ‘worthy intellectual tasks’ (Wiggins, 1990, p.l) in the same way they are used in the ‘real world’ outside school (Wiggins 1989; 1990). (Dube 48)
Authentic assessments are enabling and forward-looking, not just reflective of prior teaching. They focus on whether the student can craft polished, thorough, and justifiable answers, performances, or products. They do so by mirroring the priorities and challenges found in the best instructional activities, including conducting research; writing, revising and discussing papers; providing an engaging oral analysis of a recent political event; and collaborating with others on a debate. (Dube 49)

Teachers’ assessment-related local adaptations of a problem-based learning module

This article is about how classrooms are picking up more problem-based learning (PBL) techniques and how these techniques create problems for assessment. The reason assessment is difficult is because the previous methods for assessing have grown from different perspectives of learning (Pedersen 2). “Assessment practices that emphasize the use of grades to motivate students have long been under attack” (Pedersen 3). In the experiment, teachers were told “that teachers should assess learning as they think appropriate” (Pedersen 5). The possible assessment options in the study were: worksheets, program artifacts, students’ solutions, factual knowledge test, and problem solving transfer test (Pedersen 6). The assessment methods used are shown on table 2 (Pedersen 9). Seven of the ten teachers provided notebooks to document observations and ask questions; nine of the ten used a checkpoint system to check on student progress; all of the teachers observed and interacted and most used this as part of the assessment; six had participation grades; all assessed how students solved the problems they were given; nine gave a multiple choice test; only one teacher used a peer/self-assessment technique; one assessed how well students worked together (Pedersen 10-12).

This experiment used a software program which had right and wrong answers. This is unlike our situation where we are searching for knowledge with no predetermined path. Despite this, some grading techniques such as collaboration and peer/self-assessment I feel would be useful.
Assessment and Evaluation Practices in Outdoor, Experiential, Environmentally-Focused Integrated and Interdisciplinary Programs
-By Christopher Dube
Teachers’ assessment-related local adaptations of a problem-based learning module
-By Susan Pedersen, Abdurrahman Arslanyilmaz, Douglas Williams