Chief Learning Officer magazine is a trademark of Mediatec Publishing Inc. All clomedia.com and Chief Learning Officer magazine content Copyright 2013 MediaTec Publishing Inc. All Rights Reserved. It is illegal to copy, reproduce or publish any information contained on clomedia.com or in Chief Learning Officer magazine without express written permission from MediaTec Publishing Inc.
Using Technology to Measure Learning
There are four major uses of technology to support learning. Technology can be used:
- As a tutor (examples are drill-and-practice software, tutoring systems, instructional television, computer-assisted instruction and intelligent computer-assisted instruction).
- As a means to explore (examples are CD-ROM encyclopedias, simulations, hypermedia stacks, network search tools and microcomputer-based laboratories).
- As a tool to create, compose, store and analyze data (examples are word processing and spreadsheet software, database management programs, graphic software, desktop publishing systems, hypermedia, network search tools and videotape recording and editing equipment).
- As a means to communicate with others (examples are e-mail, interactive distance learning and the use of collaborative tools).
As electronic learning becomes more widespread, the substance and format of assessment will need to keep pace. The Web-based Education Commission states, “Perhaps the greatest barrier to innovative teaching is assessment that measures yesterday’s learning goals… Too often today’s tests measure yesterday’s skills with yesterday’s testing technologies—paper and pencil.”
As students do more of their learning using technology tools, asking them to express that learning in a medium different from the one they typically work in will become increasingly untenable. This is especially true if working with technology (e.g., searching for information using the Internet or writing on a computer) is part of the skill set being tested. These changes in learning methodology offer exciting possibilities for assessment innovation.
An obvious result of using online teaching methods is the potential for integrating assessment with instruction. In this scenario, students are able to respond to online instructional exercises electronically, so their responses can be recorded. This learning “trail” can then be analyzed to indicate what each student knows and needs to learn next, enabling instruction to be tailored to individual learning needs.
In addition to assessment embedded in Internet-delivered courses, one can imagine Internet-delivered assessment embedded in instructor-led classroom activity. Such assessment could take the form of periodic exercises that both teach and test the student. In this scenario, the exercises would be standardized and performance could serve, depending on the level of aggregation, to indicate achievement on a number of levels: individual, classroom, school, district, state or national. These Web-based exercises serve accountability as well as diagnostic purposes and are useful to both individuals and institutions.
The Next Generation of HR: Whatâ€™s Wrong? Whatâ€™s Right?
May 23rd 1:00pm - 2:00pm CT
2013 CLO Breakfast Club, Boston
September 12th - 12th, 2013The Westin Copley Place
Fall 2013 CLO Symposium
September 30th - October 2nd, 2013Rancho Las Palmas Resort & Spa
Get the Magazine