With the shift in education towards data-driven instruction, teachers spend inordinate amounts of time on assessments: checking for understanding, formative assessment, summative assessment, quizzes, tests, essays, research papers, projects and any other way they can think of to not only assess whether a student has mastered a skill or topic, but also to assess the efficacy of their own teaching.

Assessments are, to put it mildly, a disproportionately huge commitment of time. Creating them, administering them, and grading them are just the beginning. Then you need to aggregate and mine your data to really get a handle on the answers you need regarding the educational environment in your classroom. It takes so much effort on the part of the teacher, not to mention all the paper and by-hand grading and recording that has to happen on the teacher’s personal time.

A Better Solution with Edtech?

What if there was a way to streamline the process and make it more automated?

Edtech has opened up new ways to assess both students and teachers, in a way that organically integrates into the existing classroom structure. Some programs allow teachers to create assignments and comment on them through the platform of the program, where each student has an individual account and can see his or her assignments; to help assess the student throughout the learning process.

An example of this is found with the Voki edtech software, which allows students to create unique presentations with a wide variety of personalized characters. In Voki Classroom, a teacher can assign projects and students can then share them with each other through a communal area. This way, the students and teachers can work with one another to create the best project possible.

Two Unique Assessment Tools

In addition to technologies like these, teachers can also utilize edtech tools that will grade, assess and report on their students’ achievements. Three examples of these types of tools are the programs Kahoot, Socrative and Zaption.

Kahoot allows the teacher to build fun quizzes, flashcards and games. Students can join in on mobile devices and create their own as well. Kahoot can be integrated into a schools’ LMS and allows you to embed videos. A similar program is called Quizlet, where a student or teacher can generate flashcards on any topic, to help them review or study.

Socrative allows you to create quizzes or exit slips on the fly, as a formative or summative assessment, and you can push out the questions to the students’ devices, which are all logged into a teachers’ virtual classroom. The teacher can see instantaneously the percentages and grades of each student in that class as soon as they answer the questions. This instant feedback helps the teacher understand whether the class has mastered the skill. Socrative can also automatically split the class into teams for games.

Edtech has many powerful capabilities in the classroom, but some of the most revolutionary and beneficial uses is the development of easy-to-use assessment tools that benefit both the teacher and the student.

About the Author:

Na’ama Y. Rosenberg is a former educator and school administrator, and is currently the Director of Content Development at Voki, an EdTech tool that allows teachers and students to create their very own digital talking avatar. Follow @OfficialVoki on Twitter and Facebook.

 


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