Beyond another Paper - words and yellow kite

Measuring Student Learning

Beyond Another Paper – Measuring student learning via authentic student creations

Why not another paper?

  • What do you want your students to learn?
  • What do you want your students to do?
  • What are the learning objectives for your course?
  • What type of artifact could demonstrate that students mastered the course material?

Why papers?

  • Practical
  • Familiar
  • Demonstrate knowledge

Why not papers?

  • Demonstrate deep understanding
  • Show cause and effect
  • Authentic assessment

How to determine if “different” is appropriate?

  • Start with the learning objectives
  • Review Bloom’s Taxonomy
  • Consider what “appropriate” might be

Example 1:

Learning Outcome:

“ Analyze institutional formation in early Western civilizations and evaluate its influence on political, economic and social organization and control in at least three distinct societies.”

Scaffolded Assignment:

  • Students select an “institution” topic
  • Collaboratively track info in wiki and discussions
  • Independently create timelines or infographics

Example 2:

Learning Outcome:

“ Compare and contrast three aspects of the Aztec, Mayan and Incan civilizations.”

  • Students brainstorm list of things to compare
  • Independently create posters or slideshows
  • Share links or embedded images on discussion board

Example 3:

Learning Outcome:

“Students should be able to construct an econometric model, use an econometric software to estimate the parameters of the model, and interpret the results.”

Poster session:

  • A two-day poster session replaced traditional student presentations
  • Students spent class sessions explaining their results to their classmates, friends, members of the economics department, and the Dean of Arts and Sciences

What have you tried?

What might work for your learning outcomes?

  • What activities might increase student engagement?
  • What might the students remember ten years from now?


note: all URLs open in a new window/tab

General Resources:

Infographics Resources:

VoiceThread (and related) Resources:

Animation Resources:

Video Creation Resources:

Timeline Resources:

Podcast Resources:

Online Quiz Resources:

Poster Resources:

Flow Charts

Mind Maps

Collaborative Online Content Resources:

Story Resources:

Performance and other artistic expression Resources: