Below is a selection of teacher comments to the assessment:
- This was not an easy assessment. It really caused me to think very hard about the questions and there are some areas that I evidently am very clueless on!!
- I thought I knew a little more than I actually did. I'm ok with my results, just thought I was a little more savvy.
- I was surprised to see that this assessment didn't seem tailored to address how I use technology to meet the needs of students in my class. Instead, the assessment seems to suggest that all subjects learn in the same way and benefit in the same way from the use of technology.
- The vast number of big words that I don't know. Decontextualization? Transformative learning?
- I was very glad they mentioned cyber-bullying, as it can cause many sociological issues for teenagers and has been the cause of many teen suicides in the past few years.
- Why am I being given an assessment when I haven't seen the material that is to be assessed before the test?
- This is the first time I've taken any assessment like this. Long overdue. Never even saw the standards and wish I had been trained in this more structured way by my school system much earlier. Greatly appreciate the training I receive at my school.
- I would like to be more informed and better use technology in my class, but I can barely keep my head above water as it is with new curriculum, no textbooks, and what seems like constant interruptions to my afternoons and planning periods which take time away from when I could plan creative lessons.
- True/False questions are terrible questions to use in assessments, as it requires the assessment taker to guess as to how "technical" the assessment writer is writing the question. For example, I was marked wrong on the question about the use of a journal because I assumed the writer was talking about a digital journal. I was "technically" incorrect, according to the feedback, because it didn't state that the journal was digital or not. That question, in absolutely no way, assesses my knowledge of the use of digital media or 21st century skills. I also find it ironic that many of the questions focused on assessing students using a non lock-stepped assessment approach, with imbedded self-assessments and the use of multiple and varied media to allow students to demonstrate their understanding of concepts - and we took a multiple choice test. Overall, I wholeheartedly support crafting students into 21st century thinkers - but we are going to have to approach instruction and assessment in a new way and provide teachers the freedom to explore new ways of teaching. The process will involve trial-and-error learning on the part of teachers, and teachers will need to feel that it is okay to try, rather than feel pressured to "stay the course" because of high stakes testing. The use of "standard 6" on teacher evaluations may result in teachers not even trying. Personally, I know that I can always improve and that it is important to incorporate new things a little at a time - my own version of trial-and-error...if something doesn't work, the entire ship doesn't sink, so to speak. Making these activities meaningful to both the teacher and student is important - although it is critically important to be meaningful to students, if teachers aren't sold on the individual methods, it is harder for them to maximize the potential rewards from the activity.
The questions were a bit confusing at times.
What do you think we can do with this information now to improve Butler?