Week 6 – Assessment, New Approaches and a Trusted Model of Learning

I think the highlight of my week was finding an article that put together assessment and online learning in a powerful way.  Assessment and online learning is primed to influence learning outcomes and impact learning in classrooms and online (Prineas and Cini, 2011).  “Emerging technologies and approaches in online education enable all instructors to practice what the very best teachers have always known: that students are enabled or limited by their prior knowledge and that the fine art of teaching involves discovering the multiple pathways that will move students from where they are to the desired learning outcomes” (11).  They identify two caveats that are necessary for learning outcomes assessments to effectively use technologies in online learning: a learning model to guide instructors use of assessments and a “tight integration” of learning objectives and curriculum including assignments for assessments to be actionable.  The learning model they propose is one that is familiar and readily useable, Chickering and Ehrmann’s “Implementing the Seven Principles: Technology as a Lever” (1996): faculty engagement, student collaboration, active learning, frequent and fast feedback, time on task, high expectations, and respect for diversity.  As we have seen in our E-learning Program, a learner-centered approach plus active assessment practices will improve instruction and courses.  This approach emphasizes authentic learning, interactivity, instructor feedback, and engaging activities as assessments.

Prineas, M. and Cini, M. (2011). Assessing Learning in Online Education. NILOA.

Chickering, A. W. and Ehrmann, S. C. (1996). Implementing the Seven Principles: Technology as a lever. American Association of Higher Education Bulletin.

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