Thursday, January 29, 2015

E-Learning Assessment--The Solution to the Location of the Emerald Key, and Feedback to Students

If the green artifacts are put in the correct order, they should look like the following:

170 E       44.5 S

Since the idea is to determine the location of the emerald key, this combination of numbers and letters refers to rough GPS coordinates. The students could collaboratively have put these coordinates into their wearable technology and come up with a country where the emerald key is found but there is a problem that they must deal with:

"How many different combinations are there of these numbers and letters and how do you know that you have the right combination?"

It is at this point they would review the possibility of other clues that they came across in their journey. First they recognize that the key is found in a country on the earth and that the directions:

S = South       and        E=East  must be part of the location.

Secondly, the clues found on Path C would also be of help. Examination of the facial characteristics of the man encountered by the student on Path C and especially the tattoo markings on the face are unique to one group of people. They are Maori in origin and they are a group of people who live in New Zealand.


When students announce that the emerald key is found in New Zealand, the glowing emerald key appears at the base of the nearby mountain, the outline of a door appears at the base of the mountain and the digital timer at the corner of their screen stops its countdown. The idea is for them to now insert the key in the door and open the door. When they enter through the door, they are met by the assessment team who now provide them with both group feedback and individual feedback.

Nature of the Assessment and the Assessment Team: It is important to understand the following:

  1. The assessment team had a part with the educator in designing the assessment events. The events were designed to measure performance of the students from different points of view or perspectives. In the end what they have developed is a learning profile for each student. For example, the assessor whose discipline was mathematics would outline how the group and students individually performed in the use of mathematics in solving the challenges. He or she would also point out the global standard for his or her discipline of mathematics that they adhere to in order to meet the evolving changes in mathematics. They would also point out how far along each student is in reaching that standard.
  2. Each assessor would contribute their discipline's perspective on the performance of the students individually and as a group in solving the challenges that they faced. An important marker in regards to group performance is the degree of collaboration, leadership, intuitive thinking, and creative effort that was shown in meeting and dealing with challenges.
  3. Assessors would also privately note students who demonstrated above average ability in those cross disciplinary skill sets that are crucial to the continued evolution of their disciplines. An offer of a mentorship relationship would be offered to promising students. This is not only to the benefit the students but also the health of the disciplines involved.
For this meeting, it is possible to use fairly recent technology to conduct the meeting. For example, the new Microsoft Hololens might be very useful as a piece of augmented technology. It would also be useful in the next real world scenario that will be used in the second half of the assessment event.

After the assessment team has provided essential feedback on the performance of the team, students are asked to give their views on the challenges and what they thought were difficulties that they faced from their point of view. They are also asked about how they would modify the assessment event to make it better from the point of view as a participant. The educator then provides his or her point of view from the perspective of the principles of learning.

Next, the leader of the assessment team explains to the students that in the second half of the assessment event they will face a challenge that deals with a real world issue in which they will have to use many of the skills that they used in the first event in order to come up with possible solutions to the problem they will face. Now that they have received feedback, the students are now much more aware of their own strengths and also of their team members. The collaborative effort can now develop to be even stronger than when they first started the event. They will keep their wearable technology and also don the new prototype VR headgear by Microsoft called "Hololens" (if available). The key that the leader gives them opens a door that leads them into a secret government research laboratory.

Next.... A new and very real world challenge!

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