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Assessing for Success: Strategies for Effective Summative Evaluation

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  • Summative assessments determine learner proficiency and achievement of learning objectives.
  • They provide feedback on how well learners are doing.
  • They are graded and contribute to the final course grade.
  • Four types of summative assessments: written reports/essays, presentations, objective-based testing, and portfolios.
  • Tips for integrating summative assessments in e-learning courses:
    • Provide grading rubric in advance to ensure learners understand assessment criteria.
    • Use a variety of assessment types to cater to different learning preferences.
    • Implement security measures for objective-based tests to maintain integrity.
  • Use parallel forms, randomization, and timed items to reduce cheating.
  • Allow open book or note use, but specify limitations.
  • Include higher-order thinking questions that require synthesis and analysis.
  • Provide adequate time for discussion questions.
  • Summative assessments offer concrete evidence of learning achievement.
  • Online courses offer technology for easy assessment design and reuse.
  • Provide clear expectations for honesty and consequences for policy violations.
  • Well-designed summative assessments benefit learners.



Hello and welcome to the elearning and instructional design for beginners podcast, where new and aspiring instructional designers start, grow and advance their careers and instructional design, and online learning development. I'm your host Crystal Harper. I'm a former school teacher who transitioned to instructional design, all while working full time as a single mom. Would you like to become a successful instructional designer without the burden of earning another degree? Well, then let's get started.

The purpose of summative assessments is to determine whether or not a learner has achieved the desired level of proficiency or given learning objectives and a module or at the end of the elearning course. Summative assessments provide learners with how well they are doing. In contrast to formative assessments, which identify specific areas that are needing to be improved during the course. Summative Assessments are graded and are reflected in the final course grade. In this training, you will learn about four different types of summative assessments as well as three tips on how to integrate them into an elearning course. written reports. One of the best ways to summative li assess students in elearning is through the use of written reports or essays. Receiving detailed written responses from elearning students is much more often easy to replicate when compared to objective based testing. It's also much easier to assess a student's higher order thinking skills. Presentations, an online presentation discusses a specific topic in which students often share in a discussion forum. The presentation should be expected to show mastery of the given topic, determining whether students have mastered the learning objectives. objective based testing. objective based tests in an elearning course consist of multiple choice matching and completion items. The instructor can customize the design and the deployment of the test as well as feedback options. The instructor can show one item at a time or the entire test. The test can be timed and password protected. Grade availability can be determined by the instructor as either immediately after the test is finished or after the instructor has completed a review of items and an item analysis. rationales can be provided for each option of an item or for the item as a whole. It's important to mention, however, that instructors should use these types of tests with caution. There's also portfolios. In a portfolio learners are asked to place important assignments throughout the elearning course into an organized format, consisting of entirely new work that is used to determine their final grade tips to using summative assessment and elearning. Number one, make the grading rubric available in advance. Prior to giving students their summative assessments, it's important to make sure that they know where it is to be covered and how it will be graded. Provide them with the grading rubric and criteria in advance. Ensure that they understand how each section of the assessment will be analyzed. This type of scoring system assists in closing the feedback loop between the instructor and the learner. Most learning management systems include built in tools for creating assessment rubrics. Number two, use a wide range of assessments. Every learner has different learning needs and needs to be provided with a variety of types of materials and activities to learn the content effectively. Some learners require more interactive assessments while others might struggle with communication skills, which is an important skill and report or essay exams. When possible, include a good mix of summative assessment types to cater the variety of learning preferences and styles. Number three, measure security on objective based tests. Even when tests are not proctored, instructors can set deployment features to increase the security of tests. The first security measure is to hide the test until the release date and make the test available to students who have the correct answer. Next, the instructor can limit the time students see the test items once the test has begun. Typically, one minute per multiple choice item is sufficient for students to have studied for a test. To reduce the possibility of students getting answers from students in the course, instructors can develop item sets. These sets have items with similar content, but are asked in different manners or cover a slightly different aspect of the concept. The instructor then makes parallel forms of the same tests. Most learning management systems have a built in tool that can select an item from a question set to make the parallel forms in addition to having In parallel forms, instructors can set the learning management system testing tool to randomize the presentation of questions and a test and randomize the answer options of an item. When the instructor uses parallel tests, randomization and timed items, students have more difficulty consulting one another about the test items. Other methods to promote academic honesty with non proctored tests or to create the test as open book or notes. The instructor can make it quote unquote legal for students to use the internet textbooks and notes. But state what is off limits such as discussing items with other students, instructors can use test items that require higher order thinking. So the answers are not found on the page of a textbook or in students' notes. These strategies can support students' synthesis of concepts, analysis of problems and development of solutions. If discussion questions are used, instructors can provide 15 to 30 minutes per item. Summative assessments provide concrete clues about learners achievements of learning objectives. Online courses offer technologies that make the design and reuse of assessment techniques easier. Students can receive immediate feedback on activities when automated scoring with rationales is used when designing assessments stating clearly their expectations for honesty and the consequences of breaking course policies. Learners benefit from the use of well designed summative assessments


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