Connecting the Dots
Assessing Student Work Using the VALUE Rubrics
1:00 – 4:00
In this session, we will focus on assessing student work using the VALUE Rubrics.
Together, we will look at common work samples from students at different points in
their academic trajectory. We will identify evidence of critical thinking, quantitative
literacy, written communication, and civic engagement from those samples.
We will then connect that evidence to the appropriate domains and levels on
the VALUE rubrics. And we will consider the implications of what we learn for
our own practice in the classroom.
viewer people than i expected.
group work, our group was charged with connecting the dots: assessing student work using the value rubrics
written communication value rubric
Using Rubrics as a Defense Against Grade Appeals
Sydney Fulbright, PhD,
Rubrics provide the criteria for assessing students’ work. Giving students the rubric along with the assignment can clarify the instructor’s expectations. A rubric allows for much quicker, fairer, and more transparent grading. After an instructor grades 30 essays, fairness can become secondary to exhaustion. Following the rubric takes less time, and doing so allows grading the first essay to look exactly like grading the last essay. Students will be less likely to say, for example, “She got a 3 on this section, and I got a 2 for almost the same content.”
more on rubrics in this IMS blog:
Rubrics: An Undervalued Teaching Tool
Stephanie Almagno, PhD
Here are five different ways to apply the same rubric in your classroom.
1. A Rubric for Thinking (Invention Activity)
2. A Rubric for Peer Feedback (Drafting Activity)
3. A Rubric for Teacher Feedback (Revision Activity)
4. A Rubric for Mini-Lessons (Data Indicate a Teachable Moment)
5. A Rubric for Making Grades Visible (Student Investment in Grading)
How often have we heard that students believe grades to be arbitrary or capricious? Repeated use of a single rubric is good for both students and instructors. Switching roles between author and editor results in students’ increased familiarity with the process and the components of good writing. Over the course of the semester, students will synthesize the rubric’s components into effective communication. The instructor, too, will shift from “sage on the stage” to “guide on the side,” answering fewer questions (and answering the same question fewer times). In other words, students will gain greater independence as writers and thinkers. And this is good for all of us.
For more detailed information, go to the full version of the article: http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/effective-teaching-strategies/rubrics-an-undervalued-teaching-tool/
More on rubrics in this blog
For what it’s worth, here’s something I used ‘long ago’ on rubrics:
Links to information about rubrics:
The folks at TeacherVision.com weigh in on rubrics.
How to create a Rubric
The Chicago Public Schools page on writing rubrics from scratch
The Rubric Bank
The Chicago Schools again with a list of rubrics for various subject areas
Rubrics Resources – Westfield (MA) Public Schools
A links page to many other sources about using rubrics to improve instruction.
Kathy Schrock’s Guide for Educators – Assessment Rubrics
Kathy Schrock’s links listing for rubrics – examples and about them
Rubric How-To’s – MidLink’s Teacher Resource Room
Caroline McCullen’s (a multimedia teacher) page about rubrics with links to other sources on the topic
Rubrics by Bernie Dodge
The Master details how rubrics and WebQuests dovetail nicely.
An example of a web-based tool that can generate rubrics at the click of a button.
TeAch-nology.com’s Teacher Rubric Makers
Yet another example of a web-based tool that promises to generate rubrics.
Could Rubric-Based Grading Be the Assessment of the Future?
I use rubrics and see the positive sides as well as appreciate the structure they bring in assessment. But this article makes me see also the danger of rubrics being applied as a harness, another debacle no different from NCLB and testings scores, which plague this nation’s education in the last two decades. The same “standardizing” as in Quality Matter, which can bring some clarity and structure, but also can stifle any creativity, which steers “out of the norm.” A walk on such path opens the door to another educational assembly line, where adjunct and hourly for-hire instructors will teach pre-done content and assess with the rubrics in a fast-food manner.
a consortium of 59 universities and community colleges in nine states is working to develop a rubric-based assessment system that would allow them to measure these crucial skills within ongoing coursework that students produce.
written communication, critical thinking and quantitative literacy. The faculty worked together to write rubrics (called Valid Assessment of Learning in Undergraduate Education or VALUE rubrics) that laid out what a progression of these skills looks like.
“These rubrics are designed to be cross-disciplinary,” explained Bonnie Orcutt
Parents and teachers are pushing back against blunt assessment instruments like standardized tests, and are looking for a way to hold schools accountable that doesn’t mean taking time away from class work.
Communicating Students convey information, describe process, and express ideas in accurate, engaging, and understandable ways.
Researching Students identify and access a variety of resources through which they retrieve and organize data they have determined to be authentic and potentially relevant to their task.
Thinking Critically Students use structured methods to weigh the relevance and impact of their decisions and actions against desired outcomes and adjust accordingly.
Thinking Creatively Students comprehend and employ principles of creative and productive problem solving to understand and mitigate real-world problems.
Keep in mind, however, that standards don’t prepare students for anything. They are a framework of expectations and educational objectives. Without the organization and processes to achieve them, they are worthless.
Significance An instructionally useful assessment measures students’ attainment of a worthwhile curricular aim—for instance, a high-level cognitive skill or a substantial body of important knowledge.
Teachability An instructionally useful assessment measures something teachable. Teachability means that most teachers, if they deliver reasonably effective instruction aimed at the assessment’s targets, can get most of their students to master what the test measures.
Describability A useful assessment provides or is directly based on sufficiently clear descriptions of the skills and knowledge it measures so that teachers can design properly focused instructional activities.
Reportability An instructionally useful assessment yields results at a specific enough level to inform teachers about the effectiveness of the instruction they provide.
Nonintrusiveness In clear recognition that testing time takes away from teaching time, an instructionally useful assessment shouldn’t take too long to administer—it should not intrude excessively on instructional activities.
do you have rubrics developed for your classes and wondering how to reflect them in the D2L rubric tool? Please join our discussion on “good rubrics in D2L course”
One of the difficulties working with D2L as an instructor is the inability to “see” what “students” see. Indeed D2L has the students role, but…
If you are working with rubrics and advertising this feature to your students (pls share with us your rubrics!!!) and your students are perplexed that they don’t see rubrics under
as you do, please keep in mind that you need to “connect” your rubrics (click on “Add Rubrics” under Assessment/Dropbox/Properties/Rubrics) with the dropbox. Students will be able to see the rubric only after the dropbox is “open”
Please let us know, if you need more information
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THE VALUE OF ACADEMIC LIBRARIES
A Comprehensive Research Review and Report. Megan Oakleaf
Librarians in universities, colleges, and community colleges can establish, assess, and link
academic library outcomes to institutional outcomes related to the following areas:
student enrollment, student retention and graduation rates, student success, student
achievement, student learning, student engagement, faculty research productivity,
faculty teaching, service, and overarching institutional quality.
Assessment management systems help higher education educators, including librarians, manage their outcomes, record and maintain data on each outcome, facilitate connections to
similar outcomes throughout an institution, and generate reports.
Assessment management systems are helpful for documenting progress toward
strategic/organizational goals, but their real strength lies in managing learning
to determine the impact of library interactions on users, libraries can collect data on how individual users engage with library resources and services.
increase library impact on student enrollment.
p. 13-14improved student retention and graduation rates. High -impact practices include: first -year seminars and experiences, common intellectual experiences, learning communities, writing – intensive courses, collaborative assignments and projects, undergraduate research, Value of Academic Libraries diversity/global learning, service learning/community -based learning, internships, capstone courses and projects
Libraries support students’ ability to do well in internships, secure job placements, earn salaries, gain acceptance to graduate/professional schools, and obtain marketable skills.
librarians can investigate correlations between student library interactions and their GPA well as conduct test item audits of major professional/educational tests to determine correlations between library services or resources and specific test items.
p. 15 Review course content, readings, reserves, and assignments.
Track and increase library contributions to faculty research productivity.
Continue to investigate library impact on faculty grant proposals and funding, a means of generating institutional income. Librarians contribute to faculty grant proposals in a number of ways.
Demonstrate and improve library support of faculty teaching.
p. 20 Internal Focus: ROI – lib value = perceived benefits / perceived costs
production of a commodity – value=quantity of commodity produced × price per unit of commodity
p. 21 External focus
a fourth definition of value focuses on library impact on users. It asks, “What is the library trying to achieve? How can librarians tell if they have made a difference?” In universities, colleges, and community colleges, libraries impact learning, teaching, research, and service. A main method for measuring impact is to “observe what the [users] are actually doing and what they are producing as a result”
A fifth definition of value is based on user perceptions of the library in relation to competing alternatives. A related definition is “desired value” or “what a [user] wants to have happen when interacting with a [library] and/or using a [library’s] product or service” (Flint, Woodruff and Fisher Gardial 2002) . Both “impact” and “competing alternatives” approaches to value require libraries to gain new understanding of their users’ goals as well as the results of their interactions with academic libraries.
p. 23 Increasingly, academic library value is linked to service, rather than products. Because information products are generally produced outside of libraries, library value is increasingly invested in service aspects and librarian expertise.
service delivery supported by librarian expertise is an important library value.
p. 25 methodology based only on literature? weak!
p. 26 review and analysis of the literature: language and literature are old (e.g. educational administrators vs ed leaders).
G government often sees higher education as unresponsive to these economic demands. Other stakeholder groups —students, pa rents, communities, employers, and graduate/professional schools —expect higher education to make impacts in ways that are not primarily financial.
Because institutional missions vary (Keeling, et al. 2008, 86; Fraser, McClure and
Leahy 2002, 512), the methods by which academic libraries contribute value vary as
well. Consequently, each academic library must determine the unique ways in which they contribute to the mission of their institution and use that information to guide planning and decision making (Hernon and Altman, Assessing Service Quality 1998, 31) . For example, the University of Minnesota Libraries has rewritten their mission and vision to increase alignment with their overarching institution’s goals and emphasis on strategic engagement (Lougee 2009, allow institutional missions to guide library assessment
Assessment vs. Research
In community colleges, colleges, and universities, assessment is about defining the
purpose of higher education and determining the nature of quality (Astin 1987)
Academic libraries serve a number of purposes, often to the point of being
Assessment “strives to know…what is” and then uses that information to change the
status quo (Keeling, et al. 2008, 28); in contrast, research is designed to test
hypotheses. Assessment focuses on observations of change; research is concerned with the degree of correlation or causation among variables (Keeling, et al. 2008, 35) . Assessment “virtually always occurs in a political context ,” while research attempts to be apolitical” (Upcraft and Schuh 2002, 19) .
p. 31 Assessment seeks to document observations, but research seeks to prove or disprove ideas. Assessors have to complete assessment projects, even when there are significant design flaws (e.g., resource limitations, time limitations, organizational contexts, design limitations, or political contexts); whereas researchers can start over (Upcraft and Schuh 2002, 19) . Assessors cannot always attain “perfect” studies, but must make do with “good enough” (Upcraft and Schuh 2002, 18) . Of course, assessments should be well planned, be based on clear outcomes (Gorman 2009, 9- 10) , and use appropriate methods (Keeling, et al. 2008, 39) ; but they “must be comfortable with saying ‘after’ as well as ‘as a result of’…experiences” (Ke eling, et al. 2008, 35) .
Two multiple measure approaches are most significant for library assessment: 1) triangulation “where multiple methods are used to find areas of convergence of data from different methods with an aim of overcoming the biases or limitations of data gathered from any one particular method” (Keeling, et al. 2008, 53) and 2) complementary mixed methods , which “seek to use data from multiple methods to build upon each other by clarifying, enhancing, or illuminating findings between or among methods” (Keeling, et al. 2008, 53) .
p. 34 Academic libraries can help higher education institutions retain and graduate students, a keystone part of institutional missions (Mezick 2007, 561) , but the challenge lies in determining how libraries can contribute and then document their contribution
p. 35. Student Engagement: In recent years, academic libraries have been transformed to provide “technology and content ubiquity” as well as individualized support
My Note: I read the “technology and content ubiquity” as digital literacy / metaliteracies, where basic technology instructional sessions (everything that IMS offers for years) is included, but this library still clenches to information literacy only.
p. 37 Student Learning
In the past, academic libraries functioned primarily as information repositories; now they are becoming learning enterprises (Bennett 2009, 194) . This shift requires academic librarians to embed library services and resources in the teaching and learning activities of their institutions (Lewis 2007) . In the new paradigm, librarians focus on information skills, not information access (Bundy 2004, 3); they think like educators, not service providers (Bennett 2009, 194) .
p. 38. For librarians, the main content area of student learning is information literacy; however, they are not alone in their interest in student inform ation literacy skills (Oakleaf, Are They Learning? 2011).
My note: Yep. it was. 20 years ago. Metaliteracies is now.
p. 41 surrogates for student learning in Table 3.
p. 42 strategic planning for learning:
According to Kantor, the university library “exists to benefit the students of the educational institution as individuals ” (Library as an Information Utility 1976 , 101) . In contrast, academic libraries tend to assess learning outcomes using groups of students
p. 45 Assessment Management Systems
Each assessment management system has a slightly different set of capabilities. Some guide outcomes creation, some develop rubrics, some score student work, or support student portfolios. All manage, maintain, and report assessment data
p. 46 faculty teaching
However, as online collections grow and discovery tools evolve, that role has become less critical (Schonfeld and Housewright 2010; Housewright and Schonfeld, Ithaka’s 2006 Studies of Key Stakeholders 2008, 256) . Now, libraries serve as research consultants, project managers, technical support professionals, purchasers , and archivists (Housewright, Themes of Change 2009, 256; Case 2008) .
Librarians can count citations of faculty publications (Dominguez 2005)
Tenopir, C. (2012). Beyond usage: measuring library outcomes and value. Library Management, 33(1/2), 5-13.
methods that can be used to measure the value of library products and services. (Oakleaf, 2010; Tenopir and King, 2007): three main categories
- Implicit value. Measuring usage through downloads or usage logs provide an implicit measure of value. It is assumed that because libraries are used, they are of value to the users. Usage of e-resources is relatively easy to measure on an ongoing basis and is especially useful in collection development decisions and comparison of specific journal titles or use across subject disciplines.
do not show purpose, satisfaction, or outcomes of use (or whether what is downloaded is actually read).
- Explicit methods of measuring value include qualitative interview techniques that ask faculty members, students, or others specifically about the value or outcomes attributed to their use of the library collections or services and surveys or interviews that focus on a specific (critical) incident of use.
- Derived values, such as Return on Investment (ROI), use multiple types of data collected on both the returns (benefits) and the library and user costs (investment) to explain value in monetary terms.
more on ROI in this IMS blog
Updating the Next Generation Digital Learning Environment for Better Student Learning Outcomes
Monday, July 3, 2017
a learning management system (LMS) is never the solution to every problem in education. Edtech is just one part of the whole learning ecosystem and student experience.
Therefore, the next generation digital learning environment (NGDLE), as envisioned by EDUCAUSE in 2015 … Looking at the NGDLE requirements from an LMS perspective, I view the NGDLE as being about five areas: interoperability; personalization; analytics, advising, and learning assessment; collaboration; accessibility and universal design.
- Content can easily be exchanged between systems.
- Users are able to leverage the tools they love, including discipline-specific apps.
- Learning data is available to trusted systems and people who need it.
- The learning environment is “future proof” so that it can adapt and extend as the ecosystem evolves.
- The learning environment reflects individual preferences.
- Departments, divisions, and institutions can be autonomous.
- Instructors teach the way they want and are not constrained by the software design.
- There are clear, individual learning paths.
- Students have choice in activity, expression, and engagement.
Analytics, Advising, and Learning Assessment
- Learning analytics helps to identify at-risk students, course progress, and adaptive learning pathways.
- The learning environment enables integrated planning and assessment of student performance.
- More data is made available, with greater context around the data.
- The learning environment supports platform and data standards.
- Individual spaces persist after courses and after graduation.
- Learners are encouraged as creators and consumers.
- Courses include public and private spaces.
Accessibility and Universal Design
- Accessibility is part of the design of the learning experience.
- The learning environment enables adaptive learning and supports different types of materials.
- Learning design includes measurement rubrics and quality control.
The core analogy used in the NGDLE paper is that each component of the learning environment is a Lego brick:
- The days of the LMS as a “walled garden” app that does everything is over.
- Today many kinds of amazing learning and collaboration tools (Lego bricks) should be accessible to educators.
- We have standards that let these tools (including an LMS) talk to each other. That is, all bricks share some properties that let them fit together.
- Students and teachers sign in once to this “ecosystem of bricks.”
- The bricks share results and data.
- These bricks fit together; they can be interchanged and swapped at will, with confidence that the learning experience will continue uninterrupted.
Any “next-gen” attempt to completely rework the pedagogical model and introduce a “mash-up of whatever” to fulfil this model would fall victim to the same criticisms levied at the LMS today: there is too little time and training to expect faculty to figure out the nuances of implementation on their own.
The Lego metaphor works only if we’re talking about “old school” Lego design — bricks of two, three, and four-post pieces that neatly fit together. Modern edtech is a lot more like the modern Lego. There are wheels and rocket launchers and belts and all kinds of amazing pieces that work well with each other, but only when they are configured properly. A user cannot simply stick together different pieces and assume they will work harmoniously in creating an environment through which each student can be successful.
As the NGDLE paper states: “Despite the high percentages of LMS adoption, relatively few instructors use its more advanced features — just 41% of faculty surveyed report using the LMS ‘to promote interaction outside the classroom.'”
But this is what the next generation LMS is good at: being a central nervous system — or learning hub — through which a variety of learning activities and tools are used. This is also where the LMS needs to go: bringing together and making sense of all the amazing innovations happening around it. This is much harder to do, perhaps even impossible, if all the pieces involved are just bricks without anything to orchestrate them or to weave them together into a meaningful, personal experience for achieving well-defined learning outcomes.
- Making a commitment to build easy, flexible, and smart technology
- Working with colleges and universities to remove barriers to adopting new tools in the ecosystem
- Standardizing the vetting of accessibility compliance (the Strategic Nonvisual Access Partner Program from the National Federation of the Blind is a great start)
- Advancing standards for data exchange while protecting individual privacy
- Building integrated components that work with the institutions using them — learning quickly about what is and is not working well and applying those lessons to the next generation of interoperability standards
- Letting people use the tools they love [SIC] and providing more ways for nontechnical individuals (including students) to easily integrate new features into learning activities
My note: something just refused to be accepted at SCSU
Technologists are often very focused on the technology, but the reality is that the more deeply and closely we understand the pedagogy and the people in the institutions — students, faculty, instructional support staff, administrators — the better suited we are to actually making the tech work for them.
Under the Hood of a Next Generation Digital Learning Environment in Progress
Monday, July 31, 2017
The challenge is that although 85 percent of faculty use a campus learning management system (LMS),1 a recent Blackboard report found that, out of 70,000 courses across 927 North American institutions, 53 percent of LMS usage was classified as supplemental(content-heavy, low interaction) and 24 percent as complementary (one-way communication via content/announcements/gradebook).2 Only 11 percent were characterized as social, 10 percent as evaluative (heavy use of assessment), and 2 percent as holistic (balanced use of all previous). Our FYE course required innovating beyond the supplemental course-level LMS to create a more holistic cohort-wide NGDLE in order to fully support the teaching, learning, and student success missions of the program.The key design goals for our NGDLE were to:
- Create a common platform that could deliver a standard curriculum and achieve parity in all course sections using existing systems and tools and readily available content
- Capture, store, and analyze any generated learner data to support learning assessment, continuous program improvement, and research
- Develop reports and actionable analytics for administrators, advisors, instructors, and students
more on LMS in this blog
more on learning outcomes in this IMS blog