Assessment in the Flipped Class: YES PLEASE do the test again.

One of the reasons I opted out of giving multiple choice tests was to offer re-assessments (I no longer call them TESTS).

I call these outside of school assessments as students have to apply to do them outside of class time.  After using this policy in semester one a few minor changes were made. Overall,  I was really impressed and happy with how it worked.

Below is part of my Outside of School Assessment Policy. My policy is a mélange from the work of @kellyoshea , @samevns , @Math_Johnson and finally @RickWormeli.

Outside-of-Class Assessment

To qualify for one of these assessments, you will need to do the following:

✓ Go over your old assessments and identify what you did not understand. This may involve watching screencasts, extra help with teacher etc. This not meant to be a “quick fix” of the mistakes. Rework your answer to reflect your new improved understanding.

✓ Do extra practice on the relevant sections (in ADDITION to the corrections).

✓ Apply for the extra test by filling out the application.

Applying for an outside-of-class assessment must be done by each Tuesday PM. Assessments will be given on Thursdays ONLY (before or after school).

 I want to emphasize that outside-of-class assessment is a privilege and should be treated as such. That means you should take care to answer the application questions seriously and specifically. I will likely ask you to elaborate on something if I don’t understand your thinking or would like you to reflect on something a bit more.

The policies below will help us keep this process organized:

  1. One outside-of-class assessment per week.
  2. You must know exactly which Units you would like to attempt and have evidence showing how you prepared for the re­assessment.
  3. An attempt is a ‘testing situation’ and must be taken seriously.
  4. All assessments are subject to the teacher’s discretion.
  5. No application = no outside of class assessment.
  6. Outside-of-class assessments are not held within one week of the end of the term or semester.

Advantages:

1. Reduces stress on students that tests are not their only chance to show what they know.

2. Emphasis on understanding rather than on point collection strategies.

3. Deepen the conversations and questions that students have when they come to talk to me.

4. ALL learning outcomes are on the table ALL semester.

5. I have realized that students can have “breakthroughs” in their learning at different points throughout the semester.

6. Students do not give up on the course after a single assessment that did not go well.

Disadvantages:

1. SOME (very few) abuse this process and try to play the point game.

2. Certain weeks were a bit overwhelming for me if I have 3 students doing 3 different assessments.

 I say YES PLEASE do the test again!

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6 thoughts on “Assessment in the Flipped Class: YES PLEASE do the test again.

  1. Thank you for laying this out so clearly. I let my students retake anything pretty much anytime, and they are supposed to do corrections and work, but I don’t have a very clear set up or way to hold them accountable. I will be referring back to this post this summer when I am re-organizing stuff for next school year.
    Questions for you –
    1. How are your assessments organized – if a students needs to “re-assess”, does that mean they are retaking an entire test? You mentioned “learning outcomes”, so does that mean the assessments are not for the entire units/chapters?
    2. Do you “promote” re-assessing and really push your kids to come in, or do most of them take the initiative to come in on their own because they realize they want/need to?

    • Hi Crystal, thanks for your readership and comment.

      Answers to your questions:

      1) I have tried to organize my assessments by standards (learning outcomes) so that each question clearly relates to a specific standard. Students will redo test by unit though, as one standard does not reflect how a unit has connections and overlap between outcomes.There does not seem to be a perfect way to slice up the curriculum; I am happy when students can verbalize what specifics they struggle with.

      2) I really want students to make the initiative themselves. If they are not motivated to complete the form, they probably are not motivated to look at the unit in a new way either. Some students seem to take longer to figure out how this can advantage them, I think this is the better long term consequence is for them to figure it out for themselves.

      best,
      Carolyn

  2. I just found you in a roundabout way, but I am so glad that I did. I am a biology teacher, and it seems that most of the flippers I see are teaching math or physical sciences, where there are concrete problems (calculations) to solve, leading to a correct answer. I plan to flip starting next year, probably with my environmental science class first, then with biology. We are taking the opposite track from you – this is the first year we have an end-of-course exam, and I don’t see that going away any time soon. I look forward to following your trail! Thank you.

    • Hi Kim,
      Great to hear of more Bio teachers coming on board! This is my first year of Flipping and so far so good. We still have final exams (it is our school policy) worth 25% of year mark. I was worried first semester on how students would do, but they actually did better than usual, so there you go. Would love to hear from you when you start flipping and hear how it goes,
      best,
      Carolyn

  3. Hi Carolyn,
    I have been experimenting with different modes of retesting, and I like the approach you present here. My only question is what your application looks like. Would it be possible for you to send a sample, or to post one on here?

    Thanks, and all the best in preparing for a new year!
    Matt

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