542 – Self Reflection and Link to Project

Through the creation of my own project and the study of resources and projects presented in this course, I think I now have a pretty good understanding of the connection between authentic, real life experiences in PBL and learning impact. Providing an engaging, open ended driving question that inspires inquiry and exploration and tying it to the development of an artifact or project that represents the culmination of the ideas explored, while providing reasonable voice and choice for students in the process is what makes PBL so effective. Developing a unit that starts with interdisciplinary standards in mind and addresses those outcomes through real world applications creates meaning and leaves a lasting impact on students.

My expectations for this class were to come away with a deeper understanding of the benefits and strategies for PBL and a comprehensive file of resources to turn to once the course was over. My expectations have been met and exceeded.

I have developed and delivered PBL units to classes of students with a gifted designation, however I look forward to using the information and ideas from this class in regular stream classes. I will be taking ideas on differentiation and assessment gathered from this class and applying them to the development of subsequent units. I would like to also find ways to collaborate on the development of future projects with some of my colleagues at school.

Here is a link to my final project

541- Final Course Reflection

Throughout this course, AECT content standards have been a driving factor. Technology standards around design, development, and utilization have been at the core of the direction and strategy of each unit.
Development of a technology integration vision is integral to the design process. One must have a complete vision of the “why” and “how” of integration before the implementation of design. Determining the relative advantage to using technology over other strategy methods is a key element in developing a philosophical approach to designing classroom integration. Each unit of study within this course was designed to implement best practices of instructional theory and design, targeted at specific groups of learners with a standards driven learning outcome.

The following is a list of course projects with links and the standards they address:

Vision Statement

Relative Advantage of Instructional Software

  • 1.1 Instructional Design Systems
  • 1.1.1 Analyzing: process of defining what is to be learned and the context in which it is to be learned.
  • 1.2 Message Design
  • 1.3 Instructional Strategies

Network Project

  • 1.2 Message Design
  • 1.3 Instructional Strategies
  • 2.2 Audiovisual Technologies
  • 2.3 Computer-Based Technologies
  • 2.4 Integrated Technologies
  • 3.1 Media Utilization

Instructional Software

  • 1.2 Message Design
  • 2.3 Computer-Based Technologies
  • 2.4 Integrated Technologies
  • 3.1 Media Utilization

Interactive Presentation

  • 1.1 Instructional Systems Design (ISD)
  • 1.3 Instructional Strategies
  • 2.3 Computer-Based Technologies
  • 3.1 Media Utilization

Spreadsheets and Databases

  • 1.1 Instructional Systems Design (ISD)
  • 2.3 Computer-Based Technologies
  • 2.4 Integrated Technologies
  • The design of a spreadsheet or database driven lesson combines computer-based and integration technologies.

Social Media for Instruction

  • 1.1 Instructional Systems Design (ISD)
  • 2.3 Computer-Based Technologies
  • 2.4 Integrated Technologies
  • 3.2 Diffusion of Innovations

Internet Safety

  • 1.1 Instructional Systems Design (ISD)
  • 1.4 Learner Characteristics
  • 2.3 Computer-Based Technologies
  • 2.4 Integrated Technologies
  • 3.2 Diffusion of Innovations

Video Enhanced Lesson

  • 1.1 Instructional Systems Design (ISD)
  • 1.3 Instructional Strategies
  • 2.3 Computer-Based Technologies
  • 3.1 Media Utilization

Content Areas

    Language Arts    Social Studies    Art, Music. PE    English Language Learners

  • 1.1 Instructional Systems Design (ISD)
  • 1.2 Message Design
  • 1.3 Instructional Strategies
  • 1.4 Learner Characteristics
  • 2.2 Audiovisual Technologies
  • 2.3 Computer-Based Technologies
  • 2.4 Integrated Technologies
  • 3.1 Media Utilization
  • 3.2 Diffusion of Innovations

Adaptive/Assistive Technology

  • 1.1 Instructional Systems Design (ISD)
  • 1.3 Instructional Strategies
  • 1.4 Learner Characteristics
  • 2.1 Print Technologies
  • 2.2 Audiovisual Technologies
  • 2.3 Computer-Based Technologies
  • 2.4 Integrated Technologies
  • 3.1 Media Utilization

 

In working towards the conceptual framework of a professional educator as stated by the college, this course has allowed me to understand more fully the theoretical approach to technology integration for educating all learners, no matter their age, learning style or disability. The material for study and the development of relevant technology integration projects have helped me to better “create environments that prepare learners to be citizens who contribute to a complex world”. The development and study of tech implementation strategies that engage learners in content has been an integral part of this course, moreover, these strategies also serve to help students, “understand the implications of technology in today’s society”. The main thrust of this course for me has been building skills to develop strategies that help students learn how to use technology to become better thinkers and life-long learners.

Another benefit for me professionally has been the detailed look at integration in content areas other than my own. Developing strategies for tech integration into curriculum across all content areas is a personal goal for me in my career path with the intent of sharing a sound theoretical approach and effective strategies with teachers and administration. Considering the relative advantage of integration strategies I have found especially valuable. Using this approach with my own work and sharing the value of considering why you use technology in a given educational setting validates the process.

References:

Boise State University. EdTech Department: http://edtech.boisestate.edu

Blog Entries: Self Evaluation

  1. Vision Statement

This blog entry is a comprehensive look at my personal vision for technology integration, supported by several external sources.
Ranking: Outstanding

  1. Relative Advantage of Instructional Software

This blog entry outlines the relative advantage of instructional software in the classroom. My findings are supported by external resources and a multimedia Glog that gives specific examples of instructional software available for computer and tablet.
Ranking: Outstanding

  1. Spreadsheets and Databases

This blog entry examines the relative advantage of the use of these applications in education, including their ability to save time, contain and display a large amount of information and to quickly see the results of variables to a result.
Ranking: Proficient

  1. Social Networking and Walled Gardens

“Censorship, in the guise of protection, is evident throughout history when governments or religious organizations have controlled the flow of information or eliminated the expression of perceived subversive ideas, usually with the intent of suppressing dissent.” This blog entry examines my personal view of the value of social networks and the concept of “protecting” students from internet content.
Ranking: Outstanding

  1. Internet Applications via the class Voicethread

This blog outlines my personal views on using internet applications in the classroom. “…to ignore the capabilities of the Internet for gathering information, sharing resources, engaging students, communication, solving problems, building artifacts, and exploration is a disservice to students and does not prepare them for life in the world outside of school.” This entry includes a narrative on some of the ways in which I currently use the internet in my teaching and also has a link to the class voicethread on this topic.
Ranking: Outstanding

  1. Video Blog

This blog entry has a link to a video version of the text and is about the integration of video in the classroom. The entry discusses the use of video as an instructional tool, but also as a method for students to use in preparing artifacts of learning such as video documentaries.
Ranking: Outstanding

  1. Integrating Technology Into the Content Area

I believe this entry represents my best blog work for this course. I detail relative advantage and specific integration strategies for all content areas using external resources and my personal experience.
Ranking: Outstanding

  1. Obstacles and Solutions for Integrating Technology Into the Content Area

This blog entry addresses some of the problems with technology integration in content areas such as equal access for all, and security issues and includes a link to a screencast presentation that addresses technology integration strategies and solutions for English Language Learners.
Ranking: Outstanding

  1. Assistive Technologies

This blog entry outlines the accessibility capability of my Macbook Pro and was written in conjunction with the unit on adaptive and assistive technologies.
Ranking: Proficient

Overall Blog Assessment

  • Content 70/75
  • Readings and Resources 33/35
  • Timeliness 25/25
  • Responses to other students 28/30
  • Total 156/165

 

505 – Formative/Summative Assessment etc.

My evaluation final product is a formative evaluation in that it is assess the degree to which the Mount Douglas Challenge Program is successful in achieving their stated objectives. The program is continuous and ongoing, therefore the assessment is not summative, rather formative in nature. The evaluation is an objective based design, thereby decreasing the subjectivity present in other forms of evaluation. (Dick, Carey) My evaluation is a variation on the discrepancy model of evaluation which “…establishes priority educational goals and objectives (of the program), selecting variables and measures of attainment, establishing standards of acceptable performance, actually measuring performance, and finally, identifying any discrepancies between the established standards and the actual performance levels obtained.” (Dick, Carey) My evaluation is designed to evaluate the effectiveness of instruction within the targeted learning group of students enrolled in the challenge program. According to the text, in order for this evaluation to be a truly formative it must include subsequent trials in order to assess the success or failure of modifications made based on initial recommendations. As I am part of this program at Mount Douglas Secondary, I will be able to oversee the extension of my initial evaluation into a second round of assessments adding to the validity and relevance of the entire process. The text suggests that for evaluating instruction typically there are three sequential stages: one-to-one trials, small group trials, and field trials. After each stage of evaluation revisions are made to the instruction based on its findings and recommendations. This process is highly effective in an instructional design setting; however, it does not apply to my evaluation as the program in question is an existing program.

For my evaluation I have collected all the necessary data and am currently involved in the analysis process which can be, as described by the text “…similar to Sherlock Holmes or Miss Marple in a mystery.” I will be using the initial statement of goals and objectives laid out by the program as a framework for assessing its success. All the data collection tools (survey, interviews, observations) were designed to inquire directly about the respondents perceived level of success in relation to the objectives.

Reference

Dick, W. & Carey, L. Formative Evaluation (Chapter 10) Florida State University and University of Southern Florida.

505 – Post #7-Rubrics

Scoring rubrics are descriptive scoring schemes that are developed by teachers or other evaluators to guide the analysis of the products and/or processes of students’ efforts (Brookhart, 1999; Moskal, 2000). Some controversy sourounds the use of rubrics in the classroom, however the majority of educators seem to believe that they are a valuable tool for assessment when designed correctly. Rubrics can be deemed successful when they are both valid and reliable. Validity is assessed by looking closely at content related evidence such as whether or not an assessment is accurately determining a students knowledge of a specific question, or does the question itself pose difficulties which would invalidate the degree to which it assess the students knowledge in that area. Construct related evidence gives an indication in assessment about the reasoning process of an individual when responding to evaluation. In order to be useful, a valid rubric must strive to identify the internal process a learner goes through when responding. “When the purpose of an assessment is to evaluate reasoning, both the product (i.e., the answer) and the process (i.e., the explanation) should be requested and examined” (Brookhart, 1999; Moskal, 2000). Criterion related evidence in rubrics works to assess learning in relation to external factors such as the application of knowledge in “real-world” settings. Like any well designed lesson, a rubric wiht a high validity level should start with clearly define objectives and each element of the assessment should work to define the level of learning within these objectives.
Another criteria for a useful rubric is its reliability. The scoring of a learner should potentially be consistent when applied at any time or by any evaluator. One suggested strategy for increasing reliability id the use of anchor papers which is a reference sheet for raters to use given a set of test responses prior to administering the assessment rubric. If discrepancies exist between responses and raters than the rubric should be revised. This process would be time consuming and perhaps impractical in a busy public school setting, but nonetheless, it would increase reliability.

Like any type of assessment rubrics have their drawbacks. Teachers are human beings and many times it is very difficult to be completely objective during evaluation. In Understanding Scoring Rubrics: A Guide for Teachers, Carol Boston outlines some factors that at play when scoring such as positive-negative leniency error where the evaluator tends to be too hard or too easy on everyone. Personal bias and teacher student relationships should not be a factor in assessment, but human nature is not so easily beaten. Other considerations outlined by Boston are being swayed by the appearance of a document at the expense of assess the content. Length, fatigue, and order effect can also be a factor in altering the validity of an assessment. A well designed rubric should work to eliminate many of these factors, however some detractors suggest that the rubric is too prescriptive and can reduce a process such as writing to something so mechanical and prescribed that it takes away from the process itself. Personally I have, and will continue to use rubrics, especially as a way to establish criteria for learners before they embark on the learning. One successful strategy I have used in the classroom has been to have the students develop the categories and criteria for an assessment part way through a unit once they have had an opportunity to understand some of the content in the area of study.

Here are some samples of the rubrics used in my classroom as created in the website Rubistar:

MyHero Presentation Rubric
MY HERO Project – Website Rubric
Video Production Rubric
Persuasive Writing Rubric
Blog/Discussion Rubric

 

 

References:

Moskal, Barbara M. & Jon A. Leydens (2000). Scoring rubric development: validity and reliability. Practical Assessment, Research & Evaluation, 7(10). Retrieved November 1, 2011 from http://PAREonline.net/getvn.asp?v=7&n=10

Boston, Carol (2002). Understanding Scoring Rubrics: A Guide for Teachers. Eric Clearinghouse of Assessment and Evaluation, University of Maryland. College Park, MD.

505 – Entry #5

Over the last two weeks we have been working in a couple different areas in the course. A  major part of the time was spent on the development of an evaluation quiz in the form of a Google presentation. This was a great way for students to internalize some of the concepts and vocabulary in the world of evaluation, requiring students to find or create images that metaphorically represented the content of each slide. We have also been working on a mock proposal for an evaluation contract individually, and then collaboratively in groups of three. The development of this proposal requires students to consider all elements of a proposal from the introduction to the methods of evaluation to the inclusion of a time line and budget. Through this process learners apply some of the knowledge acquired over the first few weeks of the course in a mock realistic setting. The process of collaborating with peers on a final draft of the proposal has also been valuable as we take the best concepts of all three and find ways to merge them into one. We chose to set up a wiki to house all three proposals and to provide an online space for feedback and comments before drafting a final proposal on a new page on this wiki.

Finally, a major portion of these past two weeks has been the reading assignments on the topic of Problem Analysis. Identifying and analyzing problems is clearly a key element of the job of an evaluator. It is imperative that the evaluator gathers as much information as possible regarding the problem and also be aware of potential problems that may arise during the delivery of a program including the evaluation. It seems to me that a good evaluator needs to be a part time psychologist or at least have the ability to understand the motives and actions of people.

Image Source:http://tinyurl.com/699deh3

Edtech 505 Post #2

Over the course of this past week in Edtech 505 much of the content has centered around data. We have looked at methods for collecting and analyzing data and how this all fits in to the planning of an evaluation. I have never had much success with numbers, however the explanation in the text has helped to demystify the process of analyzing data. It is interesting to consider how the same results can yield different interpretations based on the technique used to analyze the data. An evaluator can choose a method to look at the numbers based on the intention of the question. It has become obvious to me over the past week that one must consider the techniques used to gather information very carefully based on the particular evaluation model one chooses to use. It has also become clear that the various evaluation models are, in many ways, techniques used by teachers all the time. It is helpful, however to identify the characteristics of each mode in order to accurately use the benefits of each in the development of an evaluation. This week also helped to solidify for me the differences between research and evaluation.