FULT ePortfolio Blogs#12 assessment task

This is portfolio task 2c:

Review an assessment task for a course you have been involved with supporting, designing or evaluating. This assessment can be a written, oral, practical or a group task.

In your submission of approximately 300 words, you should:

  • briefly explain the assessment task for review
  • evaluate the assessment considering how the task aligns with the course learning outcomes, how feedback will be provided to students and whether the SOLO taxonomy influenced your design
  • briefly discuss the relevance of the assessment rubric, if one exists.

 

The task:

Class observation exercise in the Graduate Teaching Training program.

This is one of three assessment tasks for the GTTP – the other 2 are a lesson plan for a 50 minute first year class, and then presentation of a 10 minute segment of that lesson plan to the group.

The task potentially aligns with the following program learning outcomes, depending on what they observe:

Understand your own teaching and learning styles and preferences and how these influence your approach to teaching and your classroom practice

Develop skills in effectively facilitating small group work

Increase your confidence in teaching

And clearly aligns with:

Become a more reflective teacher, helping you to continue improving your teaching after the GTTP

Students submit a reflective summary of their observation online. Some years I’ve done this as a forum posting, so they can all read and comment on each others, which is good for demonstrating the diversity of teaching on campus. Other years I’ve used the moodle assignment box to give them the experience of online assignment submission and feedback. This way makes it quicker for me to give feedback because of the built in tools. This year the students said they preferred the forum option, so we’re going with that.

This is the marking rubric that I use:

Marking rubric:

A – Outstanding achievement

The student has demonstrated extensive knowledge and understanding of the teaching processes used, and clearly and explicitly related them to GTTP content and processes. They have demonstrated an ability to think critically and evaluate the effectiveness of the processes they observed. The student has demonstrated the ability to reflect on their own learning and make links between their experience, the GTTP class content and processes, and the observed class. They have identified implications for their own teaching practice.

 

B – High achievement

The student has demonstrated thorough knowledge and understanding of the teaching processes used, and explicitly related them to GTTP content. The student has made some attempt to evaluate the effectiveness of the class that they observed. They have demonstrated an ability to reflect on their own learning and make links between their experience, the GTTP class content and processes, and the observed class. They have identified implications for their own teaching practice.

 

C – Sound achievement

The student has demonstrated an adequate knowledge and understanding of the teaching processes used, and explicitly related them to GTTP content. The student has made some attempt to evaluate the effectiveness of the class that they observed and to reflect on their own learning and make links between their experience, the GTTP class content and processes, and the observed class.

 

D – Basic achievement

The student has demonstrated a basic knowledge and understanding of the teaching processes used. The student has made some attempt to evaluate the effectiveness of the class that they observed and to reflect on their own learning from it.

 

E – Limited achievement

The student has observed a class and reported on what happened in that class.

 

This rubric is based on the NSW BOSTES rubric for assessment in NSW schools. I chose that as a base because it does use SOLO as a basis, as well as using Bloom’s taxonomy, as can be seen from the verb choices. Another reason for choosing it is because it is what our undergraduates (or many of them anyway) come into uni already used to.

All rubrics are limited, and I do find myself sometimes wanting to give a higher grade than I can strictly justify, or more occasionally a lower one. So I usually allow one of the criteria within a grade to  be missed without moving the grade down, especially at the top end.

It’s only in the last couple of years I started using a rubric for this. Previously I just asked them to write a reflection on their observation and share it. But I wasn’t happy with how simplistic many of the reflections were, so I’ve formalised it with a rubric. In general the program has been becoming increasingly formal in the last 5 years, from the fairly free-form teaching support group it used to be at ANU. The quality of the submissions are much higher now, and as a result I think students are getting more out of the program.

 

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