Week 7: Assessment

Ok – this one I struggle on. I am way, way, WAY too locked in to teaching the way

1. I learn

2.) My teachers taught.

This flows right into assessment, where I still rely heavily on quizzes, test, etc. to measure a student’s learning. I’ve got to change that.

The course I currently teach (MHIS 120 Introduction to World Musical Styles) was inherited, and it’s taught by three other faculty members. In the interest of maintaining some unity among sections, I think a generalized approach to feedback and assessment has been adopted. However, with the new online course I’m teaching, I am really trying to develop new ways of assessing and giving feedback to my students so that I know they are learning the course objectives and not just memorizing facts that they will soon forget. What’s nice is that this is starting to get some creativity working in my brain about how to change the face-to-face class as well!

The video interview / ethnography assignment that I developed comes from a current assignment in MHIS 120. Since my new class will be online, I think’s it’s much better for the students to have some experience creating content and uploading it. This also assists in feedback, as other students in the class can watch, learn from, and comment on any one student’s interview. In the past, I’ve been hesitant to use peer-to-peer evaluations, because I think I was always a “work alone” kind of person who wasn’t interested in what my peers (in class, at least) thought about my work. I was only interested in what the teacher thought. But, I do think students are different now. In my applied lessons here at VCU, my students actively asked for comments from their other performing peers in our master class – something I wasn’t giving them because of my own preferences. As it turns out, they really value what their friends think about what they are doing, and if those comments mirror the comments I give them in lessons, it only drives the point home! Win / Win.