We Need To Be Aware

Meetings in Washington, D.C. indicate that expectations from the government are not going to lower the emphasis on assessment of higher education, even if there is a change in administrations and Spellings is out.

In today’s issue of Inside Higher Ed.com is THIS ARTICLE. All of us need to read it. Feel free to comment here. Even if you don’t want to comment, please do read it.

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One Response to We Need To Be Aware

  1. Bob Trader says:

    Assessment isn’t inherently evil if treated as a feedback mechanism. Everyone strives to improve and do the best job possible, and assessment can provide one means of gaining insight into one’s own performance.

    Learning, unfortunately, is a very difficult construct to measure. This is at least partly true because it is so difficult to define what learning is (as well as what learning should be) in a way that is generalizable to an increasingly diverse population of life long “learners”. Of course, “learning” is mainly a matter of individual effort and most “learning” (or at least “studying”) occurs outside of the classroom.

    The problem seems to be when assessment is used as a means of regulating course content. I’d hate to think that federal funding comes with a stipulation that the government can dictate what is taught, and can instill mechanisms ensuring that the party line is the only perspective presented.

    The answer seems to be for those of us in higher education to construct assessment programs before the government installs them for us. Yet, there seems to be a great deal of resistance to this. Funny that the people who most conduct research are the ones who trust it the least…

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