A School District Should Take Student Learning Seriously
A good assessment should help teachers see if they are teaching what they are supposed to be teaching. It should aid students in evaluating whether they are learning something. Multiple choice questions are frequently employed because these are easily standardized, but great care must be taken when constructing such questions. By their very nature, it is easy to write multiple choice questions that can measure basic skills or knowledge. It is, however, very difficult, if not impossible to use multiple choice questions to assess mastery. For these reasons, multiple choice questions are often reliable in spotting deficiencies. And for the same reasons, these exams often perform miserably in measuring excellence. Based on that one question my son shared with me, I could guess that like my son, his classmates likewise probably did not perform well in this exam. An assessment where most students would fail is a perfect example of a useless assessment. It does not inform. It only shows what students do not know. With this specific question, it actually tells us that students do not normally think that graffiti is an example of culture. I think every student is actually taught that graffiti especially on school property is vandalism.
There is a useful article by Rachel Outhred posted in the World Education Blog entitled "Poor Quality Learning Assessments Are Crumbling Under the Weight of the Decisions They Inform". The title itself provides us with a very useful tool in gauging whether an assessment is good or bad. What decision can we make if our students cannot equate graffiti with culture? Is there a decision to be made or did we just waste precious time inside our classrooms and made students feel bad about themselves?
|Above copied from|
World Education Blog
Schools cannot take student learning seriously if school districts do not.