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Teacher Educators Rethink Self-Assessment in Higher Education

A Guide for the Perplexed


Edited By Judith McVarish and Catherine Milne

This edited book provides readers with a guide for implementing self-assessment and self-evaluation that is based on a model implemented successfully in a diverse range of teacher education courses. Educators from disciplines as diverse as theater arts, early childhood, psychology, mathematics, and science education have adopted a model of self-assessment and self-evaluation that supports the individual ongoing assessment of learning throughout a course as well as the final synthesis of individual learning in the course. Self-assessment and self-evaluation are presented here as a means to help students and teachers reinvent the learning process as co-constructed, powered by evidence and agency in order to lift thinking beyond the mere attainment of an end-point grade; to help students own their learning in new ways they may not have experienced before; to think about teaching and learning that will carry them beyond their formal schooling years; and to value new questions as evidence of learning.


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Chapter 7 Letting Go: A Personal Perspective of Using Self-Assessment and Self-Evaluation (Jason Blonstein)


Teachers today are experimenting with alternatives to traditional tests. Performance assessment, portfolio collections, classroom observation, peer assessment, and self-evaluation are joining the unit test and the final exam in the repertoire of the skillful teacher. Self-evaluation is defined as students judging the quality of their work, based on evidence and explicit criteria, for the purpose of doing better work in the future (see Chapter 1 for more). When we teach stu- dents how to assess their own progress, and when they do so against known and challenging quality standards, we find that there is a lot to gain. Self-evaluation is a potentially powerful technique because of its impact on student performance through enhanced self-efficacy and increased intrinsic motivation. Evidence about the positive effect of self-evaluation on student performance is particularly convincing for difficult tasks (Maehr & Stallings, 1972; Arter et al., 1994), especially in academically oriented schools (Hughes et al., 1985) and among high need pupils (Henry, 1994). Perhaps just as important, students like to evaluate their work. In this chapter, I use narrative to explore my per- sonal perspective and experience of self-assessment and self-evaluation. Chapter 7 Letting Go A Personal Perspective of Using Self-Assessment and Self-Evaluation Jason Blonstein b_text_T4.qxd 1/15/2014 8:36 AM Page 97 Self-Assessment and Evaluation I am going through the cards now, the index cards we use weekly for self- assessment, and at midterm and endterm for evaluation, in the sev- enth week of a Methods class of 22 students. I learned our students’...

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