Measuring Classroom Progress in the 21st Century

February 19, 2010 at 9:25 am 2 comments

This is the article that Dan Hickey linked to in his comment to the post on teachers cheating.  It’s an interesting but short piece about best practices in assessment. I was really struck by the fact that Cisco Networking Academy is held up as a model for how to do assessment right.  Interesting when the for-profit computing education does better at assessment than the non-profit, traditional computing education.

This investigation has revealed both obstacles and opportunities to developing assessments needed for real reform of educational policies and practices.

Like many others, we are concerned that the evaluation criteria for broader state-level RTT proposals may well lock in some of the problematic testing practices of No Child Left Behind. There is a danger that many states will continue to rely on the same narrow tests of basic math and reading skills that have thus far failed to lead to instruction that enhances deep conceptual understanding and innovative problem-solving.

via Measuring Classroom Progress: 21st Century Assessment Project Wants Your Input » Spotlight.

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Alfred Thompson  |  February 19, 2010 at 2:17 pm

    With for profit computing education, especially those that result in certification of some kind, it is very important to the company that the training have credibility. If the certification can be gotten via widespread cheating the certificate loses value quickly. It means that completing the course of passing the exam can not be used as evidence of a specific level of knowledge. Companies can not afford that.
    With non profit education, especially K-12 schools, the evaluation of students for college is more complex and schools assume that students who can’t make it will not get accepted. The assumption that these schools make for jobs is that a failure of students to know what might be assumed will not come back to bite the school. Usually it doesn’t though that is starting to change. Even still politics tends to protect public schools. The better private schools tend to take that a lot more seriously though because they depend on a good reputation to keep enrollment up.
    In the university space I’m not sure what the attitude is. I know that many schools like to boast of their success but if they have a track record I suspect companies assume that they turn out an occasional dud rather than being at fault themselves.

  • […] mentioned before in this blog about the importance of figuring out good measures for quality teaching.  I didn’t know that the Gates Foundation was working on this, and has a set of five […]


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