With so much recent disruption to their education, accurate information about a student’s current level of understanding is especially crucial to ensuring all pupils achieve their full potential. Understanding what students know, and what they don’t know, is central to effective learning. If pupils attempt tasks that are too difficult, they are likely to get frustrated and fail. Likewise, if they are assigned tasks that are too easy, they are unlikely to progress as they should.
Technology and assessment
Technology can be used for instant assessment in many different ways, such as tracking student progress over time. Perhaps even more compelling, however, edtech can also be used to aid formative assessment: helping to boost engagement, identify knowledge gaps, and support further/deeper learning.
Here are just some of the ways that edtech can be used to aid learning and assessment in the classroom:
As you may have seen during lockdown, cloud-based learning provides increased flexibility, as pupils access and complete online assessments at a time that best suits their individual learning style and needs. All they need is an internet-ready device and a web-based or virtual environment.
With personalised learning shown to motivate students into becoming investors in their own education, such student-led approaches are becoming increasingly popular here in the UK.
Cloud-based edtech, such as ClassFlow, allows teachers to assess student comprehension in the moment of learning, with real-time assessments and instant polling. By immediately identifying and addressing any gaps in knowledge, educators can then tailor their lessons to the real needs of each pupil.
Research into supported assessment has also highlighted some potentially interesting insights for further development. One such example involves the use of automated feedback to help students with written assignments. Learners received comparisons with their peers’ work, with the technology highlighting the similarities and differences and visually representing these side by side. Early studies have shown that students were able to identify overlapping and missing core concepts. This encouragement of self-reflection and curiosity for feedback develops a growth mindset which improves their intelligence, ability and performance.
Recognise and cater for differences
As everyone learns a little differently, teachers have long strived to meet the needs of all their pupils, painstakingly setting and photocopying different assessments for different students depending on their abilities. Technology designed for the classroom makes this process a whole lot easier.
Along with a variety of online resources to boost learning, there is a vast range of apps available to help teachers assess pupils depending on their personal interests, abilities, and goals. For example, the ClassDojo mobile app can be used to record student behaviour and achievements in context.
ClassFlow can also be used to increase engagement and improve learning by setting different questions for different pupils (or groups of pupils), depending on their ability, learning style, or project. By assessing students in a manner appropriate to them, pupils are less likely to become frustrated and disengaged, and more likely to succeed.
Understand the importance of emotion
Every teacher knows that emotion has a huge impact on the overall learning experience, but understanding the varying emotional needs of pupils can prove difficult. One way that technology is being used to help teachers consider the emotional impact of their learning activities, assessments and teaching methods is Subtle Stone – a handheld tool designed to let students privately communicate their emotional state directly to the teacher.
Students can also use audio and video tools to create podcasts and presentations reviewing their learning that term. In doing so, not only will pupils consolidate their learning in a medium that is familiar to them, but they will also produce a valuable learning resource for other students.
With the current prevalence of remote learning and growing interest in e-assessment, most teachers have come to understand the benefits of technology for assessment. However, what is not yet widely celebrated is that technology-enabled assessment can be used for more than just tracking results and discipline knowledge. By combining data with learning analytics, technology also offers great promise in helping pupils learn through assessment. Book a demo to see these edtech benefits first-hand in transforming your teaching.
The State of Technology in Education Report 2021/22
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