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Assessments in Instructional Design - Essay Example

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The Assessments in Instructional Design essay tells about teaching students new skills in an effective and quick manner. It is the use of assessments that often determines whether the instructional design works well or not. …
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Assessments in Instructional Design
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Assessments in Instructional Design

Generally, assessments are understood as tests that measure the levels of competence, knowledge or skills as results from instruction (Shank, 2009, p.1). Accordingly, good assessments of learning results measure whether students are capable of doing things they have to be able to do as instruction’s result. Dirks writes that assessments consist of two components. These are measurement and evaluation (Dirks, 1997, p.3). Measurement deals with describing students’ performance with the help of a quantitative and/or qualitative approach. Evaluation is about judging the adequacy of either students’ performance or sample work (Erickson & Wentling, 1978, p. 3). Importantly, there can be identified five principal types of assessments use. These are 1) Communication of the student’s achievement status 2) Providing self-evaluation data to a person who is learning 3) Learner placement for certain educational programs/paths 4) Motivation of a student 5) Evaluation of the instructional programs effectiveness (Guskey, 1996). Given this, the appropriate use of assessment can be explained as the one that successfully combines the aforementioned dimensions. In other words, appropriate use of assessment communicates achievement statuses of students, gives learners information for self-evaluation, helps place learners within selected educational programs, motivates students, helps find out whether an instructional program has been effective or not. The use or misuse of assessment can be evaluated through identifying whether the learning goals have been achieved. To illustrate, Shan thinks that “to determine if needed results have been achieved, results are often measured and assessed against a predefined set of standards” (Shank, 2009, p.1). In instructional design, these are known as learning objectives. For example, if a learning objective for a course of Business Etiquette is to teach students to identify the relevant actions for a number of situations in business where these skills are to be used, the assessment designed as a learning game is inappropriate. This can be explained by the fact that just measuring whether the information presented by the professor has been remembered does not provide any measurement of students’ ability. To design appropriate assessments one should view them as an inseparable part of a complex instructional process. The latter combines 1) designing objectives that relate to needed results and are relevant to them; 2) designing assessments that are relevant to learning objectives; 3) designing instruction that is relevant to both objectives and assessments; 4) evaluation all three components to ensure they are relevant and needed results have been achieved (Shank, 2009, p.1). To judge about the assessment’s appropriateness one should identify whether the assessment can be characterized as 1) valid; 2) reliable; 3) feasible; 4) having stakes. Assessment’s validity is understood as “the extent to which the assessment procedure measures what it is intended to measure” (Henning-Stout, 1994, p. 229). ... Read More
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