25 01, 2018

3 Connections Between Learning Standards and Performance-Based Assessments

By | 2018-06-15T17:47:39+00:00 January 25th, 2018|curriculum, Curriculum Planning, education, Instructional Design|0 Comments

Let’s think about verbs. Regardless of your level of interest in sentence structure, the word verb most likely brought one thing to mind: action. The physical act of doing something. Now, what verb in the following standard do you consider most significant? Develop a model to describe the cycling of water through Earth’s systems driven by energy from the Sun and the force of gravity. If you picked develop, congratulations! That’s what the middle-school science student has to do in this case: create something to describe something else. Both the Common Core State Standards and the Next Generation Science Standards are all about action, regardless of the age of the student. So, how does a student develop a model on a traditional multiple-choice assessment? Hmmm… Chances are, this question made you pause a bit and think about it. Can a model be made by choosing A, B, C, or D? Kind of. You can definitely complete a model by selecting the correct answer. You can troubleshoot a model’s design in a similar way. But the actual [...]

18 01, 2018

3 Questions to Ask When Developing High-Quality MicroMasters Courses

By | 2018-06-13T16:39:57+00:00 January 18th, 2018|curriculum, education, Instructional Design, mooc|0 Comments

Deciding to present your curriculum to the world via a MicroMasters MOOC is an excellent decision!  This environment opens doors for learners that they may have perceived as being closed.  Work, family, and other obligations leave many with the impression that they don’t have time to further their education.  With a MicroMasters MOOC, they get a taste of an advanced degree coupled with the confidence needed to be more productive in the workplace.  This is a win-win for all parties involved. A MicroMasters course should be designed with the mindset that you are taking the learner to a higher elevation.  Learners should feel like they are making a hearty investment in their futures, and they will rely on the course to be engaging, interactive, and meaningful.  The MicroMasters course is different from traditional courses learners would take.  It is designed from a professional development standpoint in which skills obtained can be utilized immediately.  Learners should love the course, walk away changed, and tell others of the awesome experience. Where do you start?  Drafting an outline for [...]

11 01, 2018

5 Steps for Incorporating Performance Based Assessment into Interdisciplinary Learning

By | 2018-06-13T16:53:16+00:00 January 11th, 2018|Course Writers, curriculum, Curriculum Planning, education, Instructional Design|0 Comments

“Good morning, class! Today, we’re going to study the literature of the ancient Mayan civilization and examine how it shaped their economy, understanding of the natural world, and language. At the end of the lesson, you’ll be assessed based upon your ability to calculate the total increase, in square miles, by which their empire grew during the height of their literary period and apply this knowledge to civil engineering in our own community. Is everyone ready?” If the scenario above reminds you of the last interdisciplinary lesson plan you read (or wrote), you’re not alone! With more districts around the country moving toward the interdisciplinary approach, there’s a good chance it’s at least on your radar. Imagine, for a moment, the reactions of the students presented with this lesson. Or, the disbelief of an administrator preparing to observe it. To round out the ELA/math/science/social studies lesson, the students in the scenario are going to show what they know in a performance-based assessment (PBA). Another hot topic in the education world, these assessments allow for a deeper [...]