Student Assignment

Student Assignment Words: 1275

Utilizing Assessment to Improve Student Life The process of pre-University admission assessment can serve an important role in enhancing student motivation and achievement. Professors can help enhance student performance by sharing clearly defined learning goals. Through student involvement in the assessment process, students learn to take responsibility for their own learning. This feeling of accountability and control may increase the students’ intrinsic motivation to learn and can heighten success.

Also, Professors have the opportunity to help students succeed through the implementation and communication of quality assessments. Black and William (1998) define assessment broadly to include all activities that teachers and students undertake to get information that can be used analytically to alter teaching and learning. This definition considers assessment as an involved practice.

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Richard Stinging describes classroom assessment as “the process of gathering evidence of student learning to inform instructional decisions” (2005, p. 5). He also states that for assessment to be effectively utilized, accurate information must be acquired and the assessment should not only reflect student achievement but also enrich tuned motivation and improve student success (Stinging, 2005). The diverse nature of pre-University assessment creates a challenge in knowledge, in preparation and in effective use by teachers.

Drawing on survey responses, transcript data, and results from the Collegiate Learning Assessment (a standardized test taken by students in their first semester and at the end of their second year), researchers concluded that a significant percentage of undergraduates are failing to develop the broad-based skills and knowledge they should be expected to master. A growing number of students are sent to allege at increasingly higher costs, but for a large proportion of them the gains in critical thinking, complex reasoning, and written communication are either exceedingly small or empirically non-existent.

At least 45 percent of students do not demonstrate any statistically significant improvement in Collegiate Learning Assessment [CLAD] performance during the first two years of college. Further study has indicated that 36 percent of students did not show any significant improvement over four years. While these students may have developed subject-specific skills that were not tested for by the CLAD, in arms of general analytical competencies assessed, large numbers of U . S. College students can be accurately described as academically adrift.

They might graduate, but they are failing to develop the higher-order cognitive skills that it is widely assumed college students should master. These findings are sobering and should be a cause for concern. Student achievement through assessment triggers the motivation-success cycle. What begins to grow in them is a sense of hopefulness and an expectation of more success in the future. This in turn fuels enthusiasm and the motivation to try hard, which eels even more success.

The basis of this upward spiral is the evidence of their own achievement, which students receive from their teachers based on ongoing classroom assessments. Thus, classroom assessment information is the essential fuel that powers the learning system for students (Stinging, 2005, p. 19). Unfortunately, if the students experience failure they are likely to get caught in a descending spiral, which can lead to feelings of disappointment and despair. This cycle of repeated failure becomes part of a shared belief between such students.

Obviously, the University goal is to initiate the cycle of motivation and success, thus implementing Perversity’s Admission Screening will help the student as well as university. While higher education is expected to accomplish many tasks and contemporary’ colleges and universities have indeed contributed to society in ways as diverse as producing pharmaceutical patents as well as prime-time athletic games existing organizational cultures and practices too often do not put a high priority on undergraduate learning.

Faculty and administrators, working to meet multiple and at times competing demands, too rarely focus on either improving instruction or demonstrating gains in student learning. They enroll in courses that do not require substantial reading or writing assignments; they interact with their professors outside of classrooms rarely, if ever; and they define and understand their college experiences as being focused more on social than on academic development. Moreover, we find that learning in higher education is characterized by persistent and/or growing inequality.

There are significant differences in critical thinking, complex reasoning, and writing skills when comparing groups of students from different family surrounds and racial/ethnic groups. More important, not only do students enter college with unequal demonstrated abilities, but those inequalities tend to persist or, in the case of African-American students relative to white students, increase while they are enrolled in higher education. In addition to involving students in assessment, the University boost student success by creating authentic, quality assessments.

Professors and students can only gain accurate knowledge of achievement through quality assessments. Valid and reliable assessments will clearly show the professor and student what knowledge and skills have been learned. From these results further learning can be initiated, whether that means re-teaching or setting new learning goals. Black and William (1998) contend that quality assessment are “tasks to be justified in terms of the learning aims that they serve, and they can work well only if opportunities for pupils to communicate their evolving understanding are built into the planning. In addition to these qualities, Stinging claims that quality assessments must “sample student achievement appropriately and eliminate distortion of results due to bias” (2005, p. 28). Without these qualities, assessments may misrepresent the student’s actual knowledge or skill level. By determining exactly what students have learned and not learned, assessments benefit both teachers and students. When University assessments become an integral part of the instructional process and a central ingredient in their efforts to help students learn, the benefits of assessment for both students and teachers will be boundless” (Gushes, 2003, p. ). McMillan (2000) also discusses the importance of a teachers ability to integrate assessment and classroom instruction claiming that it gives the teachers clues as to what lessons and level of teaching that may be appropriate. In order for teachers to take full advantage of assessments they must be open and willing to view them as achievement gauges, student motivators, and instructional guides. One method Universities can instigate this positive motivation-success cycle is to involve students in the process of assessment.

Countless ways exist from which professors can choose to include students in assessment. One instance is presented in the determination of learning or achievement targets. The bulk of responsibility for creating these targets rests in the hands of the professor guided by University. As mentioned previously, communicating these goals is one practical way of enhancing achievement. In addition, students can collaborate with the teacher to develop some additional desired Outcomes Of learning. For instance, the teacher may include goals directed toward student interests. If students play even a small role in setting the (learning achievement) target… We can gain considerable motivational and therefore achievement, benefits” (Stinging, 2005, p. 244). By becoming involved with the desired outcomes of learning, students gain motivation to learn. Students may also earn to recognize and track their improvement by participating in self- assessment. Stinging comments that understanding how to evaluate one’s work can initiate students’ understanding of the connections evaluation and achievement and can strengthen student performance (2005).

Through careful, teacher guidance and practice students can become effective judges of their own work. Further research shows that when students understand and apply self-assessment skills their achievement increases (Black and William, 1 998) and that self-assessments play a significant role in increasing students’ motivation to learn (Ho, 2003). Through self-evaluation, students directly observe their own improvement and therefore are more motivated to succeed.

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