Effective Assessments in PBL

Effective assessments, according to data from “What Kids Can Do,” are for students, faithful to the work students actually do, public, and promotes ongoing self-reflection and critical inquiry. Reflection and self-evaluation of the planned assessments for my EDTECH 542 project “Campus Beautification Project” appear to be on the right track.

For quality one, assessments for students, students can have personal relevance and ownership of the final product.  Students are designing flower beds for their school campus, a product that serves a need to the students’ community. Student creativity in the project will allow students to gain ownership of the design process and final product.

For quality two, presentations of student designs and opportunities for peer and self reflection focuses assessment on the work students actually do.  The rubrics and checklists utilized during these processes meets the requirements for quality three, assessments that are public.  Criteria for the design are present and accessible to the students from the very beginning of the project.

Finally, the assessments present in the “Campus Beautification Project” promote ongoing self-reflection and critical inquiry.  Students are serving as landscape architects as they design flower beds, striving to create scale drawings that meet the aesthetic and functional standards of practitioners in the field. However, student voice in the assessment process would strengthen this quality as well.  Criteria for assessment could be added to the rubrics and checklist by class and group discussions with the teacher. In this, students can help develop the idea of what a good design would look like to fit the needs of the school campus.  Students may also be given the opportunity to award ribbons to designs by vote.

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