Sarah Nilsson, JD, PhD, MAS
Sarah Nilsson, JD, PhD, MAS

Classroom Assessment Techniques (CATs)

Classroom Assessment: approach designed to help teacher find out what students are learning in the classroom and how well they are learning it. This approach is

  1. Learner-centered: focus is on observing and improving learning – often more effective to help students change their study habits or develop their metacognitive skills (skills in thinking about their own thinking and learning) – if they are to become independent, lifelong learners, students must learn to take full responsibility for their learning
  2. Teacher-directed: defining characteristic of any profession is that it depends on the wise and effective use of judgment and knowledge – CATs respects the autonomy, academic freedom, and professional judgment of college faculty – individual teacher decides what to assess, how to assess, and how to respond to the information gained through the assessment
  3. Mutually beneficial: requires active participation of students – by cooperating in assessment, student reinforce their grasp of course content and strengthen their skills at self-assessment – motivation is increased when they realize faculty are interested and invested in their success as learners – when students focus more clearly, participate more actively, and feel more confident that they can succeed, they do better in their course work
  4. Formative: approach to assessment – purpose is to improve the quality of student learning – CATs almost never graded and almost always anonymous – aim is to provide faculty with information on what, how much, and how well students are learning, in order to help them better prepare to succeed – on graded evaluations and in world beyond classroom
  5. Context-specific: have to respond to particular needs and characteristics of teachers, students, and disciplines to which they are applied – you need the right tool (CAT) to do the job right – each class has its own “chemistry” (different students and backgrounds) hence you must select the correct CAT – each class develops its own “micro culture”
  6. Ongoing: classroom assessment is an ongoing process – creation and maintenance of classroom “feedback loop” – CATs provide feedback from students on their learning – as this approach becomes integrated into everyday classroom activities, the communications loop connecting faculty to students – from teaching to learning – becomes more efficient and more effective
  7. Rooted in good teaching practice: CAT build on existing good practice by making assessment more systematic, more flexible, and more effective – taking a few minutes to administer a CAT before teaching, gives teacher a clearer idea of where the students are, and thus, where to begin instruction – during class CATs reveal how well students are following class progress – CATs after class session helps to reinforce material taught and uncovers gaps in understanding before they become impediments – directed practice in self-assessment gives students opportunity to learn metacognitive skills

 

7 BASIC ASSUMPTIONS OF CATs

1. The quality of student learning is directly, although not exclusively, related to the quality of teaching. Therefore, one of the most promising ways to improve learning is to improve teaching.

2. To improve their effectiveness, teachers need first to make their goals and objectives explicit and then to get specific, comprehensible feedback on the extent to which they are achieving those goals and objectives. Teaching Goals Inventory (TGI) is an instrument designed to help faculty identify and clarify their instructional goals.

CATs reinforce student learning in 3 ways:

(a) By focusing student attention on the most important elements of the course;

(b) By providing additional practice in valuable learning and thinking skills; and

(c) By training students to become more self-aware, self-assessing, independent learners.

3. To improve their learning, students need to receive appropriate and focused feedback early and often; they also need to learn how to assess their own learning.

4. The type of assessment most likely to improve teaching and learning is that conducted by faculty to answer questions they themselves have formulated in response to issues or problems in their own learning.

5. Systematic inquiry and intellectual challenge are powerful sources of motivation, growth, and renewal for college teachers, and classroom assessment can provide such challenge.

6. Classroom assessment does not require specialized training; dedicated teachers from all disciplines can carry it out.

7. By collaborating with colleagues and actively involving student in classroom assessment efforts, faculty (and students) enhance learning and personal satisfaction.

   

The value of starting small: a 3-step process

  1. Planning: select only one “focus” class to try a CAT on – a class that you are confident in and that is going well – pick one of these:
    1. The Minute Paper
    2. The Muddiest Point
    3. The One-Sentence Summary
    4. Directed Paraphrasing
    5. Applications Cards
  2. Implementing: let students know beforehand about the CAT – assure them it is to assess their learning and not grade them – best to ask for anonymous responses – ensure they understand the procedure (good idea to have it written down) – when done do a cursory read through
  3. Responding: close the feedback loop by letting students know what you learned from the CAT and what adjustments you intend to make based on the results – and what adjustments the students could make to improve their learning

 

5 SUGGESTIONS FOR A SUCCESSFUL START

  1. If a CAT does not appeal to your intuition and professional judgment as a teacher, do not use it
  2. Do not make CATs into a self-inflicted chore or burden
  3. Do not ask your students to use any CAT you have not previously tried on yourself
  4. Allow for more time than you think you will need to carry out and respond to the assessment
  5. Make sure to “close the loop” – let students know what you learn from their feedback and how you and they can use that information to improve learning

 

Classroom Assessment Project Cycle

 

 

Advantages of starting with goals:

  1. Encourages faculty to engage in a deep level of self-assessment about their teaching aims
  2. Enhances motivation and teacher ownership of the process by tying assessment directly to the instructional goals that individual classroom teachers value most
  3. Promotes good instructional practice by ensuring that faculty are assessing what they are teaching and teaching what they are assessing
  4. Creates the basis for a shared vocabulary, which teachers from different disciplines can use in discussing their CATs
  5. Offers a natural, effective way to structure future networks of participants

 

Disadvantages of starting with goals:

  1. Can initially appear somewhat complex and time-consuming
  2. Process of identifying and clarifying goals can seem overwhelming to some, even threatening
  3. Using TGI can keep the process at an abstract level longer than is comfortable for some

 

 10 Guidelines for success and a checklist for avoiding problems:

  1. Start with assessable goals (right size, precisely stated, easy to assess, worth assessing, actually taught in class)
  2. Focus on alterable variables
  3. Build in success (CAT appropriate to goal, can be integrated into class activity, reasonably simple, contributes to learning)
  4. Start small (tried on yourself, run-through with colleague, made purpose clear to students, process clear to students, provide necessary practice, allow enough time for technique)
  5. Get students actively involved
  6. Set limits on the time and effort you will invest
  7. Be flexible and willing to change (analyze data, collect reasonable amount, simple analysis, enough time for analysis)
  8. Work with other teachers who share your interests
  9. Remember that students must first learn to give useful feedback – and then must practice doing so (plan the response, explicit feedback to students, presented appropriately, good and bad news, accomplish a reasonable change, allow time to respond adequately)
  10. Enjoy experimentation and risk-taking, not just success

 

ASSESSING PRIOR KNOWLEDGE, RECALL, AND UNDERSTANDING

 

Background Knowledge Probe

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - medium 

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium

To assess prior learning ask students to write short answers, or circle correct responses to multiple choice or both

Teachers determine starting point for lesson

Students focus on subject matter, and get a preview of new stuff to come plus a review of stuff already known

TGI 11 – improve memory skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 18 – learn terms and facts of this subject

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

TGI 32 – develop an informed historical perspective

 

 

Focused Listing

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

To focus students’ attention on a single important term, name, or concept from a particular lesson or class session and directs them to list several ideas that are closely related to that “focus point”

Can be used before, during, and after class

TGI 9 – improve skill at paying attention

TGI 10 – develop ability to concentrate

TGI 11 – improve memory skills

TGI 12 – improve listening skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 18 – learn terms and facts of this subject

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

 

 

Misconception/Preconception Check

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium

Assesses student prior knowledge but with a twist – focus is on uncovering prior knowledge or beliefs that may hinder or block further learning

TGI 8 – develop ability to distinguish between fact and opinion

TGI 18 – learn terms and facts of this subject

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

TGI 27 – develop an openness to new ideas

TGI 50 – cultivate an active commitment to honesty

 

 

Empty Outlines

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium

Instructor provides empty or partially completed outline of in-class presentation and allows students a limited time to complete

Works best in courses with large amount of content, facts, principles, in structured format

TGI 9 – improve skill at paying attention

TGI 10 – develop ability to concentrate

TGI 12 – improve listening skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 18 – learn terms and facts of this subject

 

 

Memory Matrix

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium

2-dimensional diagram: e.g.

 

 

Height above clouds

Visibility

Radio communication

Class A

 

 

 

Class B

 

 

 

 

Rows and columns are filled in BUT cells are left empty

TGI 11 – improve memory skills

TGI 14 – improve reading skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 18 – learn terms and facts of this subject

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

 

 

Minute Paper

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

Quick and extremely simple way to collect written feedback on learning

Ask question: What was the most important thing you learned during this class?

What important question remains unanswered?

TGI 5 – develop ability to synthesize and integrate information and ideas

TGI 6- develop ability to think holistically: to see the whole as well as the parts

TGI 9 – improve skill at paying attention

TGI 10 – develop ability to concentrate

TGI 12 – improve listening skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 18 – learn terms and facts of this subject

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

 

 

Muddiest Point

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

Ask question: What was the muddiest point in ___________?

TGI 9 – improve skill at paying attention

TGI 10 – develop ability to concentrate

TGI 12 – improve listening skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 18 – learn terms and facts of this subject

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

 

 

ASSESSING SKILL IN ANALYSIS AND CRITICAL THINKING

 

Categorizing Grid

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

Students are presented with a grid containing 2 or 3 important categories and a list of various items to be sorted – they are given limited time to sort into correct categories on grid

TGI 2 – develop analytic skills

TGI 4 – develop ability to draw reasonable inferences from observation

TGI 11 – improve memory skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 18 – learn terms and facts of this subject

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

 

 

Defining Features Matrix

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

Requires students to categorize concepts according to the presence (+) or absences (-) of important defining features, thereby providing data on their analytic reading and thinking skills

TGI 2 – develop analytic skills

TGI 4 – develop ability to draw reasonable inferences from observation

TGI 11 – improve memory skills

TGI 12 – improve listening skills

TGI 14 – improve reading skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 18 – learn terms and facts of this subject

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

 

 

Pro and Con Grid

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low to medium

Students make lists of pros and cons to help them think more clearly about a pressing decision

TGI 2 – develop analytic skills

TGI 4 – develop ability to draw reasonable inferences from observation

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 28 – develop an informed concern about contemporary social issues

TGI 35 – develop capacity to make informed ethical choices

TGI 46 – develop a commitment to one’s own values

TGI 51 – develop capacity to think for oneself

TGI 52 – develop capacity to make wise decisions

 

 

Content, Form, and Function Outlines

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

This is also known as “What, how, and why Outlines”

To respond to it, the student carefully analyzes the WHAT (content) HOW (form) and WHY (function) of a particular message

TGI 2 – develop analytic skills

TGI 14 – improve reading skills

TGI 15 – improve writing skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 35 – develop capacity to make informed ethical choices

TGI 51 – develop capacity to think for oneself

 

 

Analytic Memos

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – high

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

Basically a simulation exercise

Requires students to write a 1-page or 2-page analysis of a specific problem or issue – the person for whom the memo is being written is usually identified as an employer, a client, or a stakeholder who needs the student’s analysis to inform decision making

TGI 2 – develop analytic skills

TGI 3 – develop problem-solving skills

TGI 15 – improve writing skills

TGI 37 – develop management skills

TGI 38 – develop leadership skills

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

 

ASSESSING SKILL IN SYNTHESIS AND CREATIVE THINKING

 

One-Sentence Summary

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – medium

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium

Challenges students to answer the questions “who does what to whom, when, where, how and why?” about a given topic, and then to synthesize those answers into a single informative, grammatical, and long summary sentence

TGI 5 – develop ability to synthesize and integrate information and ideas  

TGI 11 – improve memory skills

TGI 12 – improve listening skills

TGI 14 – improve reading skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 22 – prepare for transfer or graduate study

TGI 37 – develop management skills

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

 

 

Word Journal

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low to medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – medium to high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium to high

Prompts a two-part response – first, student summarizes a short text in a single word – second, student writes a paragraph or two explaining why he or she chose that particular word to summarize the text – the completed response to the Word Journal is an abstract or a synopsis of the focus text

TGI 5 – develop ability to synthesize and integrate information and ideas

TGI 6 – develop ability to think holistically – to see the whole as well as the parts

TGI 11 – improve memory skills

TGI 12 – improve listening skills

TGI 14 – improve reading skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 22 – prepare for transfer or graduate study

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

TGI 51 – develop capacity to think for oneself

 

 

Approximate Analogies

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium

Students simply complete the second half of an analogy – A is to B as X is to Y – for which their instructor has supplied the first half (A is to B) – since the students don’t have to use math we call them approximate

TGI 5 – develop ability to synthesize and integrate information and ideas

TGI 7 – develop ability to think creatively

TGI 11 – improve memory skills

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

TGI 27 – develop an openness to new ideas

TGI 51 – develop capacity to think for oneself

 

 

Concept Maps

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – medium

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium to high

Drawings or diagrams showing mental connections that students make between a major concept and other concepts students have learned

TGI 4 – develop ability to draw reasonable inferences from observation

TGI 5 – develop ability to synthesize and integrate information and ideas

TGI 6 – develop ability to think holistically – to see the whole as well as the parts

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

TGI 21 – learn to understand perspectives and values of this subject

TGI 27 – develop an openness to new ideas

TGI 51 – develop capacity to think for oneself

 

 

Invented Dialogues

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium to high

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

By inventing dialogues, students synthesize their knowledge of issues, personalities, and historical periods into the form of a carefully structured, illustrative conversation

There are 2 levels of “invention” – first, students carefully selecting and weaving together actual quotes from primary sources – second, they may invent reasonable quotes that fit the character of the speakers and the context

TGI 4 – develop ability to draw reasonable inferences from observation

TGI 5 – develop ability to synthesize and integrate information and ideas

TGI 7 – develop ability to think creatively

TGI 21 – learn to understand perspectives and values of this subject

TGI 23 – learn techniques and methods used to gain new knowledge in this subject

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 25 – learn to appreciate important contributions to this subject

TGI 32 – develop an informed historical perspective

 

 

Annotated Portfolios

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

Contain a very limited number of examples of creative work, supplemented by the students’ own commentary on the significance of those examples

TGI 1 – develop ability to apply principles and generalizations already learned to new problems and situations

TGI 7 – develop ability to think creatively

TGI 20 – develop skill in using materials, tools, and/or technology central to this subject

TGI 22 – prepare for transfer or graduate study

TGI 42 – develop a commitment to personal achievement

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

 

ASSESSING SKILL IN PROBLEM SOLVING

 

Problem Recognition Tasks

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

Present students with a few examples of common problem types – students’ task is to recognize and identify the particular type of problem each example represents

TGI 1 – develop ability to apply principles and generalizations already learned to new problems and situations

TGI 3 – develop problem-solving skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 17 – improve mathematical skills

TGI 22 – prepare for transfer or graduate study

TGI 23 – learn techniques and methods used to gain new knowledge in this subject

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

 

 

What’s the Principle

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

After students figure out what type of problem they are dealing with, they often must then decide what principle or principles to apply in order to solve the problem – this CAT focuses on the second step in problem solving – it provides students with a few problems and asks them to state the principle that best applies to each problem

 TGI 1 – develop ability to apply principles and generalizations already learned to new problems and situations

TGI 3 – develop problem-solving skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 17 – improve mathematical skills

TGI 22 – prepare for transfer or graduate study

TGI 23 – learn techniques and methods used to gain new knowledge in this subject

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 39 – develop a commitment to accurate work

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

 

 

Documented Problem Solutions

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – medium

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium to high

To become truly proficient problem solvers, students need to learn to do more than just get correct answers to textbook problems – they need to become aware of how they solved those problems and how they can adapt their problem-solving routines to deal with messy, real-world problems – this CAT prompts students to keep track of the steps they take in solving a problem – “show and tell” how they worked it out

TGI 1 – develop ability to apply principles and generalizations already learned to new problems and situations

TGI 3 – develop problem-solving skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 17 – improve mathematical skills

TGI 22 – prepare for transfer or graduate study

TGI 23 – learn techniques and methods used to gain new knowledge in this subject

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 39 – develop a commitment to accurate work

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

 

 

Audio and Videotaped Protocols

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – high

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

By studying an audio or video recording of a student talking and working through the process of solving a problem, teachers and students can get very close to an “inside view” of the problem-solving process

TGI 1 – develop ability to apply principles and generalizations already learned to new problems and situations

TGI 3 – develop problem-solving skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 17 – improve mathematical skills

TGI 22 – prepare for transfer or graduate study

TGI 23 – learn techniques and methods used to gain new knowledge in this subject

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 39 – develop a commitment to accurate work

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

 

ASSESSING SKILL IN APPLICATION AND PERFORMANCE

 

Directed Paraphrasing

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – medium

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium

Success depends on one’s ability to translate highly specialized information into language that clients or customers will understand

Designed to assess and help develop that valuable skill – students are directed to paraphrase part of a lesson for a specific audience and purpose, using their own words

TGI 1 – develop ability to apply principles and generalizations already learned to new problems and situations

TGI 15 – improve writing skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

TGI 37 – develop management skills

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

 

 

Applications Cards

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low to medium

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low to medium

After students have heard or read about an important principle, generalization, theory, or procedure, the instructor hands out an index card and asks them to write down at least one possible, real-world application for what they just learned

TGI 1 – develop ability to apply principles and generalizations already learned to new problems and situations

TGI 4 – develop ability to draw reasonable inferences from observation

TGI 7 – develop ability to think creatively

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

TGI 26 – develop an appreciation of the liberal arts and sciences

TGI 51 – develop capacity to think for oneself

 

 

Student-Generated Test Questions

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – medium to high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium to high

One of the best ways to find out how well the students understand the material is to prepare test questions and model answers

TGI 1 – develop ability to apply principles and generalizations already learned to new problems and situations

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 18 – learn terms and facts of this subject

TGI 19 – learn concepts and theories in this subject

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 39 – develop a commitment to accurate work

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

 

 

Human Tableau or Class Modeling

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium to high

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

TGI 1 – develop ability to apply principles and generalizations already learned to new problems and situations

 

TGI 7 – develop ability to think creatively

TGI 31 – develop aesthetic appreciations

TGI 32 – develop an informed historical perspective

TGI 36 – develop ability to wok productively with others

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

 

 

Paper or Project Prospectus

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

A prospectus is a brief, structured first draft plan for a term paper or term project

Paper prospectus: prompts students to think through elements of the assignment, such as the topic, purpose, intended audience, major questions to be answered, basic organization, and time and resources required

Project prospectus: may focus on tasks to be accomplished, skills to be improved, and products to be developed

TGI 1 – develop ability to apply principles and generalizations already learned to new problems and situations

TGI 5 – develop ability to synthesize and integrate information and ideas

TGI 15 – improve writing skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 37 – develop management skills

 

Term Paper Prospectus.docx
Microsoft Word document [62.4 KB]
Term Project Prospectus.docx
Microsoft Word document [65.4 KB]

ASSESSING STUDENTS’ AWARENESS OF THEIR ATTITUDES AND VALUES

 

Classroom Opinion Polls

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low to medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

Many faculty already use de facto opinion polling in their classes when they ask students to raise their hands to indicate agreement or disagreement with a particular statement

This technique builds on that kind of informal polling, providing more anonymity for students and more honest and accurate data for faculty

TGI 21 – learn to understand perspectives and values of this subject

TGI 27 – develop an openness to new ideas

TGI 28 – develop an informed concern about contemporary social issues

TGI 35 – develop capacity to make informed ethical choices

TGI 38 – develop leadership skills

TGI 46 – develop a commitment to one’s own values

TGI 47 – develop respect for others

TGI 52 – develop capacity to make wise decisions

 

 

Double-Entry Journals

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

Students begin by noting the ideas, assertions, and arguments in their assigned course readings that they find most meaningful and/or controversial

These notes on the text are the first half of the double-entry journal

The second entry explains the personal significance of the passage selected and responds to that passage – this way students engage in a dialogue with the text, exploring their reactions to the reading

TGI 14 – improve reading skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 21 – learn to understand perspectives and values of this subject

TGI 22 – prepare for transfer or graduate study

TGI 26 – develop an appreciation of the liberal arts and sciences

TGI 27 – develop an openness to new ideas

TGI 46 – develop a commitment to one’s own values

TGI 47 – develop respect for others

TGI 51 – develop capacity to think for oneself

 

 

Profiles of Admirable Individuals

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

Students write a brief, focused profile of an individual – in a field related to the course – whose values, skills, or actions they greatly admire

TGI 21 – learn to understand perspectives and values of this subject

TGI 25 – learn to appreciate important contributions to this subject

TGI 32 – develop an informed historical perspective

TGI 35 – develop capacity to make informed ethical choices

TGI 38 – develop leadership skills

TGI 46 – develop a commitment to one’s own values

TGI 47 – develop respect for others

TGI 52 – develop capacity to make wise decisions

 

 

Everyday Ethical Dilemmas

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – medium

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

Students are presented with an abbreviated case study that poses an ethical problem related to the discipline

Students respond briefly and anonymously and faculty analyze the responses in order to understand the students’ values

TGI 21 – learn to understand perspectives and values of this subject

TGI 25 – learn to appreciate important contributions to this subject

TGI 32 – develop an informed historical perspective

TGI 35 – develop capacity to make informed ethical choices

TGI 38 – develop leadership skills

TGI 46 – develop a commitment to one’s own values

TGI 47 – develop respect for others

TGI 52 – develop capacity to make wise decisions

 

 

Course-Related Self-Confidence Surveys

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

The surveys consist of a few simple questions aimed at getting a rough measure of the students’ self-confidence in relation to a specific skill or ability

TGI 30 – develop a lifelong love of learning

TGI 37 – develop (self-) management skills

TGI 38 – develop leadership skills

TGI 42 – develop a commitment to personal achievement

TGI 45 – improve self-esteem/self-confidence

TGI 46 – develop a commitment to one’s own values

TGI 48 – cultivate emotional health and well-being

TGI 49 – cultivate physical health and well-being

 

Self Confidence Survey AS 405.docx
Microsoft Word document [106.4 KB]

ASSESSING STUDENTS’ SELF-AWARENESS AS LEARNERS

 

Focused Autobiographical Sketches

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium to high

A shorter, more specific version of a personal statement or autobiographical essay

Students are directed to write a one- or two-page autobiographical sketch focused on a single successful learning experience in their past – an experience relevant to learning in this particular course

TGI 30 – develop a lifelong love of learning

TGI 38 – develop leadership skills

TGI 42 – develop a commitment to personal achievement

TGI 45 – improve self-esteem/self-confidence

TGI 46 – develop a commitment to one’s own values

TGI 47 – develop respect for others

TGI 48 – cultivate emotional health and well-being

TGI 52 – develop capacity to make wise decisions

 

 

Interest/Knowledge/Skills Checklists

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low to medium

Brief, teacher-made versions of the commercial interest and skills inventories long used by guidance and career counselors

Teachers create checklists of topics covered in their courses and skills strengthened by or required for succeeding in those courses

Students rate their interest in the various topics, and assess their levels of skill or knowledge in those topics, by indicating the appropriate responses on the checklists

TGI 22 – prepare for transfer or graduate study

TGI 42 – develop a commitment to personal achievement

TGI 44 – cultivate a sense of responsibility for one’s own behavior

TGI 46 – develop a commitment to one’s own values

TGI 52 – develop capacity to make wise decisions

 

Interest Survey AS 405.docx
Microsoft Word document [114.9 KB]
Knowledge and Skills Survey AS 405.docx
Microsoft Word document [119.2 KB]

 

Goal Ranking and Matching

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low to medium

Students take a few minutes to list some learning goals they hope to achieve through the course, and rank the relative importance of those goals

The instructor collects student lists and matches them against course goals

TGI 21 – learn to understand perspectives and values of this subject

TGI 36 – develop ability to work productively with others

TGI 42 – develop a commitment to personal achievement

TGI 44 – cultivate a sense of responsibility for one’s own behavior

TGI 46 – develop a commitment to one’s own values

 

 

Self-Assessment of Ways of Learning

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium to high

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low to medium

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low to medium

Requires faculty who use them to adopt specific theoretical frameworks for learning

Prompts students to describe their general approaches to learning, or their learning styles, by comparing themselves with several different profiles and choosing those that, in their opinion, most closely resemble them

TGI 21 – learn to understand perspectives and values of this subject

TGI 23 – learn techniques and methods used to gain new knowledge in this subject

TGI 30 – develop a lifelong love of learning

TGI 37 – develop (self-) management skills

TGI 42 – develop a commitment to personal achievement

TGI 46 – develop a commitment to one’s own values

TGI 51 – develop capacity to think for oneself

 

ASSESSING COURSE-RELATED LEARNING AND STUDY SKILLS, STRATEGIES, AND BEHAVIORS

 

Productive Study-Time Logs

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – medium to high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

Thumbnail records that students keep on how much time they spend studying for a particular class, when they study, and how productively they study at various times of the day or night

TGI 4 – develop ability to draw reasonable inferences from observations

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 22 – prepare for transfer or graduate study

TGI 37 – develop (self-) management skills

TGI 41 – improve ability to organize and use time effectively

TGI 44 – cultivate a sense of responsibility for one’s own behavior

TGI 48 – cultivate emotional health and well-being

TGI 52 – develop capacity to make wise decisions

 

 

Punctuated Lectures

Faculty time and energy required for preparation - low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

Requires students and teachers to go through 5 steps:

  1. Listen (to lecture or demonstration)
  2. Stop (lecture or demonstration)
  3. Reflect (quiet moment – reflection on what they were doing while listening that may have helped/hindered their understanding of that information)
  4. Write (any insights they have gained)
  5. Give feedback (to teacher in the form of short, anonymous notes)

Encourages students to become self-monitoring listeners

TGI 9 – improve skill at paying attention

TGI 10 – develop ability to concentrate

TGI 12 – improve listening skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 44 – cultivate a sense of responsibility for one’s own behavior

 

 

Process Analysis

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

Focuses students’ attention on the process – on how they do their academic work

Requires that students keep records of the actual steps they take in carrying out a representative assignment and asks them to comment on the conclusions the draw about their approaches to that assignment

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 17 – improve mathematical skills

TGI 20 – develop skill in using materials, tools, and/or technology central to this subject

TGI 39 – develop a commitment to accurate work

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

 

 

Diagnostic Learning Logs

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – high

Limited, tightly focused versions of the academic journals many teachers already use

Students keep records of each class or assignment – for class sessions students write one list of main points covered that they understood and a second list of points that were unclear – for assignments students record problems encountered or errors made as well as excellent and successful responses – at regular intervals students reflect on, analyze, and summarize the information collected on their own learning – then they diagnose their strengths and weaknesses and generate possible remedies

TGI 2 – develop analytic skills

TGI 3 – develop problem-solving skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 22 – prepare for transfer or graduate study

TGI 39 – develop a commitment to accurate work

TGI 42 – develop a commitment to personal achievement

TGI 43 – develop ability to perform skillfully

TGI 44 – cultivate a sense of responsibility for one’s own behavior

 

ASSESSING LEARNER REACTIONS TO TEACHERS AND TEACHING

 

Chain Notes

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

Students pass around a large envelope on which the teacher has written one question about the class – the students had all been given index cards beforehand and have less than a minute to write a response on the index card then drop it in the envelope and pass it on

TGI 9 – improve skill at paying attention

TGI 10 – develop ability to concentrate

TGI 12 – improve listening skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 41 – improve ability to organize and use time effectively

TGI 44 – cultivate a sense of responsibility for one’s own behavior

 

 

Electronic Mail Feedback

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low to medium

Instructor poses a question to the class via email about his/her teaching – students respond to email with a personal message sent to mailbox

TGI 20 – develop skill in using materials, tools, and/or technology central to this subject

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 36 – develop ability to work effectively with others

TGI 37 – develop management skills

 

 

Teacher-Designed Feedback Forms

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low to medium

Short, simple, course-specific evaluation forms – from 3 – 7 questions – multiple choice or Likert scale or short fill-in answers formats

TGI 4 – develop ability to draw reasonable inferences from observations

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 50 – cultivate an active commitment to honesty

 

Teacher designed feedback.docx
Microsoft Word document [85.5 KB]

 

Group Instructional Feedback Technique (GIFT)

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – medium

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium to high

Centers on getting student responses to 3 questions related to their learning:

  1. What works?
  2. What doesn’t?
  3. What can be done to improve it?

Best if someone other than instructor administers this – determines most frequent responses – summarizes – reports back to instructor

TGI 4 – develop ability to draw reasonable inferences from observations

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 36 – develop ability to work effectively with others

TGI 50 – cultivate an active commitment to honesty

 

 

Classroom Assessment Quality Circles

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – high

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – high

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium to high

Like the Japanese management technique – quality control circles

The focus is on involving groups of students in structured and ongoing assessment of course materials, activities, and assignments

TGI 4 – develop ability to draw reasonable inferences from observations

TGI 8 – develop ability to distinguish between fact and opinion

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 36 – develop ability to work effectively with others

TGI 37 – develop management skills

TGI 47 – develop respect for others

TGI 50 – cultivate an active commitment to honesty

ASSESSING LEARNER REACTIONS TO CLASS ACTIVITIES, ASSIGNMENTS, AND MATERIALS

 

RSQC2 – Recall, Summarize, Question, Comment, Connect

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low to medium

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium

Teachers can use the whole thing or select individual components to administer

When the whole thing is used, this 5-step protocol guides students quickly through simple recall, summary, analysis, evaluation, and synthesis exercises focusing on a previous class session

TGI 5 – develop ability to synthesize and integrate information and ideas

TGI 9 – improve skill at paying attention

TGI 11 – improve memory skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 37 – develop (self-) management skills

 

 

Group-Work Evaluations

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – medium

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

Simple questionnaires used to collect feedback on students’ reactions to cooperative learning (where students work in structured groups toward an agreed-upon learning goal) and study groups

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 36 – develop ability to work effectively with others

TGI 37 – develop (self-) management skills

TGI 38 – develop leadership skills

TGI 47 – develop respect for others

TGI 50 – cultivate an active commitment to honesty

 

 

Reading Rating Sheets

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low

Short, simple assessment form that students fill out in response to their assigned course readings

TGI 14 – improve reading skills

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 50 – cultivate an active commitment to honesty

TGI 51 – develop capacity to think for oneself

 

Reading rating sheet.docx
Microsoft Word document [77.6 KB]

 

Assignment Assessments

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – low to medium

Ask students to consider the value of the course assignments to them as learners

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 50 – cultivate an active commitment to honesty

TGI 51 – develop capacity to think for oneself

 

 

Exam Evaluations

Faculty time and energy required for preparation – low

Students time and energy to respond to CAT – low to medium

Faculty time and energy to analyze data – medium

Students view tests and examinations as critical indicators of faculty expectations – faculty can thus use tests and exams to direct student learning

Allows teachers to examine both what students think they are learning from exams and tests and students’ evaluations of the fairness, appropriateness, usefulness, and quality of tests or exams

TGI 16 – develop appropriate study skills, strategies, and habits

TGI 24 – learn to evaluate methods and materials in this subject

TGI 50 – cultivate an active commitment to honesty

TGI 51 – develop capacity to think for oneself

Exam evaluation form.docx
Microsoft Word document [79.6 KB]

Contact Me

Sarah Nilsson, JD, PhD, MAS

 

602 561 8665

 

sarah@sarahnilsson.org

 

You can also fill out my online form.

Get Social with Me

View Sarah J. Nilsson's profile on LinkedIn

Legal disclaimer 

The information on this website is for educational purposes only and DOES NOT constitute legal advice. While the author of this website is an attorney, she is not your attorney, nor are you her client, until you enter into a written agreement with Nilsson Law, PLLC to provide legal services.

Print Print | Sitemap
© Sarah Nilsson