Student-Centered Assessment Tools for Remote Learning

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Classroom Application
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Assessment is a critical component of teaching and learning. Measuring student learning through assessments allows both the teacher and student to analyze how successfully the students are meeting the activities’ purpose and objectives. Teachers are confronted with the challenge of creating meaningful learning experiences and authentic assessments during remote learning experiences. The nature of remote learning allows more opportunities for teachers to develop student-centered experiences. 

Technology affords teachers the ability to assess many students in an industrial way using multiple-choice options from learning management systems. Teachers that only use these types of assessments often view technology as a means to consume information. These traditional assessments can limit students’ opportunity to show what they know. In student-centered opportunities, students take center stage instead of the teacher and have voice and choice in experiences that they value. When students have the ability to choose how they demonstrate knowledge or skills, they are empowered to be active participants in the learning process. Developing student-centered assessment opportunities can be a challenge to put into practice. Below are a few technology tools that support student-centered assessments during remote learning. 

Popplet (reviewed here) is a brainstorming tool that encourages students to create mind maps to organize projects. Students can also use Popplet to organize creative solutions to problems while collaborating with their classmates. Popplet supports the concept of brainstorming, which is essential for organizing student-centered assessments. 

Flipgrid (reviewed here) is a video discussion platform that teachers can use to see and hear their students’ creative assessment responses that explain and show their learning. An audio-only feature was recently added, and students can also share presentations with their peers. 

Sway (reviewed here) is a device-agnostic resource that fosters creativity through student-centered assessment opportunities. Students can personalize their creations by adding text and media to interactive reports, stories, presentations, and more. 

Big Huge Labs (reviewed here) is a learner-centered online tool that allows students to create their own content through images and text. BigHugeLabs offers a variety of simple, easy-to-use image design templates, including trading cards, badge makers, and posters, giving students many choices to show what they know. 

Screencastify (reviewed here) can provide learners a student-centered and engaging learning experience in both distance and traditional learning settings. Students can record a screencast of presentations or they can demonstrate how they solved a problem 

Technology tools cannot change learning experiences on their own. These tools must be part of a comprehensive effort to focus assessments on student-centered opportunities instead of standardized consumptive tests. Developing student-centered assessments gives students the chance to take charge of their learning while inspiring their curiosity and creativity. What tools are you using for student-centered assessments during remote learning experiences? We’d love to hear your tools and strategies in the comments below!

About the author: Kevin Bower

Kevin Bower has 21 years of elementary teaching experience, is a certified reading specialist, and teaches instructional technology to pre-service and practicing teachers. He has presented nationally, had his teaching practices cited in various publications, and published a collaborative article on infusing technology into the balanced literacy classroom. Kevin’s research interests focus on using technology to best meet the needs of students with diverse abilities.

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