Monday, March 2nd, 2009 | laptops
We all know that assessment is a vital part of the learning process. But, with the extra admin it creates, many teachers avoid it as much as possible.
A laptop has the potential to take the sting out of assessment – think about some of the ways in which this device can make your life easier.
Assessment tasks, such as test papers, project outlines and examination papers – with their memorandums – can be typed using the word processor on your laptop. The documents can be saved for future use – just imagine how much time you will save next year.
Through email, or transfer of data on a memory stick, additional material may be obtained from your colleagues and you can reciprocate by sharing some of your material with them – this means less work for all.
Ideas for questions and assessment tasks can be obtained from the internet.
A spreadsheet can be used to maintain class lists and to record assessment scores. As you enter assessment grades, calculations are done automatically – you can now put the calculator aside. Even percentages can be calculated; averages, means, medians or any other statistical information is available to you at the press of a button. Adjustments are made without sweat. When you change one figure, totals are recalculated. If you want to adjust the marks of all learners by ten percent, you only have to give one instruction.
You can send assessment summaries and results to the principal or your colleagues and eliminate paperwork.
A laptop can also be used in a more direct way for assessment – education software programmes specially designed to help you with assessment are available. They contain question banks and allow you to change questions, or even add your own. Even if the learners in your class do not have access to computers, you can still use these programmes to generate test papers. But if there are computers available for learner use, some of these programmes allow you to create on-line tests for your class. The beauty of these programmes is that, if the learner does the test on the computer, you can let the computer mark the test for you! You will do well to investigate some of these programmes.
Once you start using your laptop you’ll discover its power as an assessment tool. It will become your best friend, even if you use it for nothing other than assessment.
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