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H808 – Assessing your elearning competence

December 9, 2010

Well, this activity will be quickly done as I have no own context of practice. 😉

But seriously folks, I am one of this traditional teachers, partly of necessity, because access to IT resources is pretty restricted, partly because I am still a ‘professional learner’, but not yet an eprofessional. But, as always after my initial rant, I will write something, though as always that is just my humble opinion.

We had a couple of resources to explore to find out about their approaches to assessing the evidence of professional learning. I liked the SWAP resource as it provided guidelines for self- and peer assessment for students, but it also identified factors that help or hinder developing self-assessment practices. Here I found a couple of factors, respectively practices that apply to my context, like staff group is sceptical to new developments and  lack of confidence, unwillingness to accept ‘new’ approaches to assessment, or staff carry implicit assessment criteria that they do not articulate to themselves or communicate to other staff and students. I try to be more explicit and write the assessment criteria down, so students know what to expect and if necessary explain them to them. Because, I think that is more than fair that students know how I am going to grade them, and their work is a lot more outcome orientated. That’s what I appreciate with the OU, that they make explicit how they will assess a TMA or ECA (end-of-course assessment).

Pretty interesting was the full 360 feedback in the Fairsail resource. I already learned about this approach in my Bachelor studies when I took my communication course (K309), which I can highly recommend. Anyhow, the 360-degree feedback was introduced to health services in 2001 it uses an approach that canvasses feedback from people at all levels of the organisation and feeds that information back to them so they can identify areas of development both for themselves and for the organisation. Feeding information back, reflecting on it, but also to become active and change those areas of development is something that I miss so often in school, both within the faculty but also with students. You know there is no use if you don’t get any feedback on your work and when nobody asks for your input, but it is even worse if you get feedback and nothing changes. That’s what I experienced so many times in school, e.g. we had a study day where the whole faculty attended and we came up with good results and suggestions for improvement, but a couple of days later the great majority got back to the old routine and nothing really changed. How can a school develop with such an attitude? :^)

Resources:

Burgess, H (n.d.) Self and Peer Assessment (online), The Higher Education Academy: Social Work and Social Policy (SWAP). Available from: http://sorubank.ege.edu.tr/~bouo/DLUE/Chapter-08/Chapter-8-makaleler/Assessment%202_%20Self%20and%20peer%20assessment.htm (accessed 9 December 2010).

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