The Emphasis of Assessment Packages within Rapid eLearning.
Is it contentious that everything about the way we teach in the context of Rapid eLearning may be different or is it obvious?
It would be strange to think that the way we assess work taught within in an innovative, participatory atmosphere can stay exactly the same.
It is the goal of this article to put forward ways that assessment might be different once course material has been made available online. The discussion pertains to assessment for face to face (supported by online availability of materials), blended learning and online learning. All assessment will change once courses are placed completely online because all students would be completing the same assessment packages regardless of their mode of participation.
With participatory learning, the play between technology, composer, and audience is no longer passive. Indeed, participatory learning blurs these traditional lines. (Davidson& Goldberg p10)
The Future of Learning Institutions in a Digital Age
In their book Davidson & Goldberg outline the radical changes already taking place within the world of global education.
learning institutions, for the most part, are acting as if the world has not suddenly, irrevocably, cataclysmically, epistemically changed-and changed precisely in the area of learning. We are not clear if this is so much an ostrich time for learning institutions or (to use a different animal metaphor) a deer-in-the-headlights time. In any case, most institutions are stuck in an epistemological model of the past, even as they pour tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars into IT that promises a technological future. (Davidson & Goldberg 2012) (pp. 19-20). Kindle Edition.
The major difference to assessment of work taught in participatory mode is that the assessment must be able to measure a capacity to
- learn how to learn
- express an idea and to discuss the idea within challenging discussion
- develop a body of work including written, visual and multi media
- present that compiled body work in a way that can be accessed by others
- work in a self-directed independent manner
Participatory Learning is (and is about) Co-creating
Participatory learning is not simply about interaction (we all have plenty of that in our lives) but of interaction that, because of issues of access, means that one is co-creating with myriad people who are strangers and who can remain anonymous. (Davidson& Goldberg p10)
What this means in essence is that the assessment package will be about process while at the same time ensuring an appropriate level of mastery of content and skill. The implication would be that if the students have mastered the art of
- researching a topic,
- uploading the argument backed by visuals and movies ( or interactive wares such as quizzes and games)
- been involved in discussions about the topic
- written a self-reflection (meta cognitive statement)
the facilitator can be sure that the student is equipped to deal within the educational area specified in the Learning Guide.
It’s the Process not the Product
Means we are marking process not content – there is no longer a set content but rather a conversation that is developed by the participation of the group.
Again……With participatory learning, the play between technology, composer, and audience is no longer passive. Indeed, participatory learning blurs these traditional lines. (Davidson& Goldberg p10)
In the channel called OHS Specifically Targeted for Arts Based Practitioners; teachers of the core competency for arts and crafts people have available for them a space within which artists can upload articles for assessment. Here they can participate in discussion about and upload multimedia support for the issues they choose to bring to the co creational table.
Assessment Becomes the Bonus of Active Participation in Process
By sharing their safety processes and concerns about Occupational Workplace Health and Safety issues students can contribute to a virtual treasure trove of resources and information whilst at the same time becoming attuned to the art of writing online.
This is a win/win situation for all concerned because participants
- have a body of process oriented work to asses which becomes evidence of mastery of content
- become attuned to working online and this means they can show evidence that they are ready to enter an online learning course
- create resources to be shared by the entire virtual community
- students have access to the entire repository of resources for ever as they prepare to embark on the chosen career
- can continue to write for Suite101 and be paid to do so
- can refine their arts writing skills now have another career option which can directly be attributed to their online course experience
- Davidson,C.N. & Goldberg.D.T. (2012) The Future of Learning Institutions in a Digital Age (p. 16). Kindle Edition.
- Community of eLearning about OHS for Arts Based Practitioners. (2012) A strategic explanation of the hybrid reference growing up around the topic of Occupational Workplace Health and Safety for artists