[Sekido’s FFP Journal Vol 4] DAY 4 “Do You Really Need to Evaluate That?”

DAY 4 Evaluation
・Review of the Previous Session
・Goals and Objectives

・Significance of Evaluation
・Basics of Evaluation (Summative Evaluation and Formative Evaluation)
・Rubrics (Exercises in Creating a Rubric)

In general, evaluation is considered to be the “final judgment” that decides whether to pass or fail a learner from the students’ point of view and troublesome paperwork from the instructors’ point of view. The session started with the instructor’s words that asked the participants to change such views on the evaluation and instead consider it as an “escort runner” or a “compass” for students and a “tool to support teaching activities” to check the comprehension of students and improve classes for instructors.

Evaluation is divided into the summative evaluation and formative evaluation. The former is for gradings at the end of the learning process like term-end examinations, whereas the latter is for supporting learners during the learning process. Formative evaluation can be replaced by feedback, a more familiar term. If you only use summative evaluation, evaluation becomes the goal, and what matters for students will be a single examination, which makes them forget what they learned once the exam is over. Formative evaluation is necessary to avoid such a situation and let the students keep learning by making the evaluation a start point.

In the latter half of the session, participants created rubrics, a tool for formative evaluation, in groups. I heard many groups discussing, “Do we really need to evaluate from this perspective when posing this task?” “It is becoming too superficial. It seems to be unable to evaluate what we really want to.” I felt that the participants truly grasped the role of rubrics as a tool for class reform by making them ask themselves, “What kind of learning do I want to enhance? Is this evaluation appropriate for that purpose?”

Whether it is a rubric or an examination, reexamining the evaluation from the perspective of “enhancing learning” leads you to face the question, “Do you really need to evaluate that?” No evaluations or classes can be said “absolutely correct” or “perfect,” and that’s why you need to keep working on improvement, an endless process. Class reform is, as the instructor said, like “building Sagrada Família.”

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