Daily Archives: February 25, 2015

ET 505 Week 6 assignment

1. Summarize chapter 4

This week I chose to do an alternative assessment, and made my first infographic.

2. Update on evaluation report

Here is my update on the project…

History

I have used online grading tools for several years with my students.  All students have a sign on, and are able to see individual scores and their average.  The online grading has evolved into a class website that I have used for about three years.  The website that I used last year included content.   Last year, my students told me (in a survey and also during formative assessments-conversations) that what they are looking for in a website is: access to grades, weekly agenda, and assignments. They emphatically told me that they did not use the website to learn content because they were able to get that information from the class activities and other websites that we use.

Current Program

From that feedback, this school year I began using the school provided Aspen X2 by Follett to provide both grades and  a class website that includes weekly agenda (in class & homework), links needed for assignments, links to worksheets and class notes.

Goals

The goals that I developed are:

  1. increase student ownership for their work,
  2. increase student interaction with the course content,
  3. give students the ability to prepare for class,
  4. give students the ability to review the material from prior lessons,
  5. give students access to information when absent from class.

The weekly ET505 assignments & my Evaluation Project

Each week I gain some new insight into where I am going with the evaluation.  Last week looking at the Program Cycle in the text (chapter 3) I found very helpful.  It made me realize that the program (website) was started based on a student survey (a very basic needs assessment) that asked students what they wanted in a class website.  From the results, the current website was created.  Doing last week’s assignment made me realize that  MY goals for website are what I would like my students to do, the needs assessment did not reflect the goals at all.  The needs assessment asked something completely different.  IN retrospect, I should have been trying to find out not only what information they want in a class website, but how could a class website increase their ownership, interaction w/ content, etc.

This week’s reading I found helpful as I try to discern the goals from the activities, and lastly measurement tools.  Another item from chapter four that I found very helpful was turning the goals into questions as a starting point for the evaluation.  For example, the goal is to increase student ownership for their work.  The Evaluation question is; Has the website increased the students’ ownership for their work.  Another example: goal give students access to information when absent from class.  The evaluation question would be: Do students who are absent from class access the information?

In this week’s discussion, a classmate (Nora) suggested that the first two goals need to be more specific.  Rather than the goal being students will take ownership for their work, the goal should further clarified such as what is meant by increased ownership, and what is meant by increased interaction with content.  For me, increased ownership means checking grades to make sure all assignments are complete (rather than my reminding students), checking the website to know what is happening each day in class, etc.  Increased interaction with course content means checking the website to know what we are doing in class, reviewing what we did that day to see if they still have questions, etc.

Current Evaluation Plan

The current plan is to develop a series of questions (Likert 1-5 scale) to survey students.

I can also see how often students sign on to website, so I plan to collect that data as well.

I still need to develop the questions and administer the survey.

Questions

My biggest concern is that the goals are goals that I created based on my vision for the class rather than what the survey revealed.  Nora’s comments helped, but I am unsure if I should change the goals to be more specific, OR do I leave the goals as is, and develop questions to evaluate the specifics of the goals.  The other option is update the goals to reflect the original survey.  I am unsure how to proceed.   I am interested to see if any of the information provided is helping students achieve the goals or will it point me in other directions?  Will I find some other unintended outcomes?   (One I know for sure is that the website is helping to keep me more organized!)  Will it reveal that the website isn’t enough to achieve those goals, but rather it is a combination of website & course design?  Another thing that I am interested in finding out is do the students like having the website, what do they like about it, what don’t they like about it, how can the content and layout be improved to help students.

Still lots of questions as I proceed, but I think it is starting to make a little more sense.

ET505_week6_assignment

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ET 505 Week 6 Discussion

This week’s discussion topic.

Use this forum to talk about your Evaluation Report-course project. Start with a brief summary of your project. What are you planning to do? Give us an update. Have the recent weekly assignments and/or these discussions been helpful in honing your thoughts about your project? Or are you stumped as to what to do? Ask for feedback on your proposed project. Get ideas on possible topics and evaluation methodologies from Dr. T and your classmates. The more you participate in this forum, the more you (and your project) will benefit so don’t hold back. This is the perfect time to give and receive peer feedback in a collaborative manner.

(This forum is similar to part of this week’s assignment so you can post about your project here before you submit your assignment, if you prefer. Sort of a “two-fer.”)

(And don’t overlook the “Evaluation Proposal-Response to RFP”  project that’s due during week 8. If you have any questions about it, ask them there. We’ll have a discussion devoted to it next week.)

My initial post follows:

History

I have used online grading tools for several years with my students, and students have been able to access grades.  The online grading has evolved into a class website that I have used for about three years.  The website that I used last year included content.   Last year, my students told me that what they are looking for in a website is access to grades, weekly agenda, and assignments. They emphatically told me that they did not use the website to learn content because they were able to get that information from the class activities and other websites that we use.

Current Program

From that feedback, this school year I began using the school provided Aspen X2 by Follett to provide both grades and  a class website that includes weekly agenda (in class & homework), links needed for assignments, links to worksheets and class notes.

Goals

The goals that I developed are:

  1. increase student ownership for their work,
  2. increase their interaction with the course content,
  3. give students the ability to prepare for class,
  4. review the material from prior lessons,
  5. have access to information when absent from class.

The weekly assignments & my Evaluation Project

Each week I gain some new insight into where I am going with the evaluation.  Last week looking at the Program Cycle in the text (chapter 3) I found very helpful.  It made me realize that the program (website) was started based on a student survey (a very basic needs assessment) that asked students what they wanted in a class website.  From the results, the current website was created.  Doing last week assignment’ made me realize that  MY goals for website are what I would like my students to do, the needs assessment did not reflect the goals at all.  The needs assessment asked something completely different.  IN retrospect, I should have been trying to find out not only what information they want in a class website, but how could a class website increase their ownership, interaction w/ content, etc.

This week’s reading I found helpful as I try to discern the goals from the activities, and lastly measurement tools.  Another item from chapter four that I found very helpful was turning the goals into questions as a starting point for the evaluation.  For example, the goal is to increase student ownership for their work.  The Evaluation question is; Has the website increased the students’ ownership for their work.  Another example: goal give students access to information when absent from class.  The evaluation question would be: Do students who are absent from class access the information?

Curent Evaluation Plan

To survey students after developing a series of questions to evaluate the goals.  I plan to use a scale (1-5) for the questions.

I can also see how often students sign on to website, so I plan to collect that data as well.

I still need to develop the questions and administer the survey.

Questions

My biggest concern is that the goals are goals that I created w/o much planning, and the website I think is doing something different.  I assume that I should still evaluate the website against the original goals.  I am interested to see if any of the information provided is helping students achieve the goals or will it point me in other directions?  Will I find some other unintended outcomes?   (One I know for sure is that the website is helping to keep me more organized!)  Will it reveal that the website isn’t enough to achieve those goals, but rather it is a combination of website & course design?

I guess my question is do I keep forging ahead w/ the original plan?  I think so, but would love your input!

Last question is regarding the “Evaluation Proposal-Response to RFP”  I have just begun to look at this, and am worried that I am behind.  Will the next two weeks be enough time to complete this project?

ET 505 Week 5 assignment

This week’s assignment has two parts:

1. Apply Gap Analysis to the program/project you detailed in exercises in previous assignments. Specifically discuss each part of the three parts of Gap Analysis relative either to the program you have chosen to evaluate or to your actual evaluation of the program. Specify which. That is, discuss in terms of the three “legs” (A, B, C) of Gap Analysis’s three-legged stool. Be specific as to what goes with each leg (i.e., describe each of the three legs specifically as applied to the program/project you intend to evaluate or to the evaluation itself). (Include short description of program being evaluated. 200-400 words or alternative, 4 possible points)

Leg A =
Leg B =
Leg C =

2.  Explain Figure 3.1 Program Cycle (p. 51) in terms of the program that you have chosen to evaluate (not the evaluation itself) as detailed in previous assignments (or a revised version or a new evaluation topic). (150-300 words or alternative, 4 possible points)

Here is my submitted assignment.

1. Apply Gap Analysis to the program/project you detailed in exercises in previous assignments.

Leg A = Where we are

Student surveys from prior years suggest that students want to have the following information on the class website: grades, homework information, links to class notes. Currently the teacher has a class website where students can access grades, see the daily agenda (for in class & homework), obtain class worksheets and notes, and weblinks for specific projects. Students have a secure sign on for the website.

Leg B = Bridge between A&B, how to get there

The website has information that students requested (grades, class notes, homework).  The teacher needs to determine if this information is helping to achieve the larger goals of student responsibility, preparing for class, accessing when absent, etc.  To bridge the gap, the teacher needs to determine ways to ensure that students:  interact with the website,  learn how to access information, have incentive for referring to website.

Leg C = Goals

Website Goals:

  1. increase student ownership for their work,
  2. increase student interaction with the course content,
  3. give students the ability to prepare for class,
  4. give students the ability to review material from prior classes,
  5. give students access to information when absent from class.
  6. give students access to grades

MHS Academic goals: One of the MHS academic core values is “the MHS student will use technology effectively.”

2.  Explain Figure 3.1 Program Cycle (p. 51) in terms of the program that you have chosen to evaluate

Organizational Goals: A core value of MHS is “The MHS student will use technology effectively.” Goals of the website include: increase student ownership for their work, increase student interaction with the course content, give students the ability to both prepare for class and review the material from prior lessons, and access information when absent from class

Needs Assessment: The teacher thought having a class website would help students be more organized, and take more responsibility for learning, but did not do a  needs evaluation prior to creating the website.  As a result, the evaluation will have to look at the goals of the project, and develop the appropriate questions to determine if goals are being met.

Program Planning: From prior years surveys of students regarding courses and course websites, the teacher determined that students most wanted the following in a class website: grades, homework assignments, and access to documents such as notes and weblinks. The website was created with the following content: grades, weekly plan for classwork and homework, class notes, and weblinks.

Implementation and Formative Evaluation:The teacher created the website during the first trimester of the school year.  Based on informal formative student feedback (from the first trimester), the website evolved for the second trimester.  One big adjustment is that the teacher updates the website as plans change to accurately reflect what was done in class each day, so that students have access to up to date content for both classwork and homework.  Other changes included adding more course documents such as worksheets and handouts.

Summative Evaluation:This will be the final report done as part of this class and will determine if the goals are being met.  The evaluator will determine the appropriate survey tools.

et505_week5_assignment

Week 5 Discussion

This week’s discussion centered around the program planning cycle.

planning cycle

Program Cycle from Chapter 3 in B&D text. Graphic courtesy of Megan Jacobson, former 505 student.

Our mission for the week: Discuss the graphic above (from p. 51) and/or Table 3.1 – Program Planning Cycle and Evaluation Activities (pp. 62-3). Pros/cons. Something you disagree with? Where does “monitoring” occur? Anything missing? Bring in any prior experience you might have with such a planning cycle.

Will this model fit with the program/project you discussed in the chapter 1 and the subsequent assignments? Other aspects of chapter three you’d like to discuss? Other planning cycles you’ve used?

Here is my initial response:

At first thought, I didn’t think I had any experience w/ the evaluation process, but realized that the process of NEASC recertification that our high school did the last two years followed the cycle (to some degree).  I was unaware of the cycle, and was only involved in small piece, but I see how that process fit the cycle mow that I am learning about evaluation.

First, as a staff, we developed our core mission statement (organizational goals)

We then broke into groups by, and each group evaluated our school against one set of  the NEASC standards.  From there, all the groups reported their findings and the coordinators created a needs analysis. (needs assessment)

Next the official NEASC visiting committee came to our school, reviewed our report and gathered additional evidence.  Using our formative assessments and their findings, they created a final report w/ both commendations and recommendations for the school.

The process is still ongoing as we look for ways to implement the NEASC suggestions.

I can see how our administrators had an evaluation plan, although at the time I had no idea.  I saw it more as a task list to accomplish.  I see the process overall as beneficial, but I can see how the evaluation piece can be left out of the planning process, which will only hinder the process as it proceeds.

Will this model fit with the program/project you discussed in the chapter 1 and the subsequent assignments? Other aspects of chapter three you’d like to discuss? Other planning cycles you’ve used?

Applying this model to the teacher website (my own) I plan to evaluate will work for portions.

Organizational Goals: One of the core values of MHS is “The MHS student will use technology effectively.” I see evaluating a teacher website as part of this as the teacher can model effective use of technology, and can encourage students to utilize the tools.

Needs Assessment: A formal needs assessment was not done prior to the creation of the website.  The teacher (me) thought having a class website would help students be more organized, and take more responsibility for learning, but did not think of formal needs or the evaluation process when creating the website.

Program Planning: From prior years surveys and websites, the teacher determined that students wanted to access grades, see homework assignments, and access documents such as notes.  From these older surveys, the teacher created a website that included a weekly agenda (classwork & homework), current grades, and links to notes and websites.

Implementation and Formative Evaluation: The teacher created the website during the first trimester of the school year.  Based on student feedback, the website evolved for the second trimester.  One big adjustment is that the teacher updates the website as plans change to reflect accurately what was done in class each day.   Other changes included adding more course documents such as worksheets and handouts.

Summative Evaluation: This will be the final report done as part of this class and will determine if the goals are being met.

The goals are:

1.      increase student ownership for their work,

2.      increase their interaction with the course content,

3.      give students the ability to prepare for class,

4.      review the material from prior lessons,

5.      have access to information when absent from class

Thanks for reading this.

CC

As usual, my peers gave me some excellent feedback, and I feel like I am beginning to get a better idea on how to focus on the objectives for evaluation.