Evaluations and assessments are crucial to effective education, and NovoEd provides many different evaluation options. For example, you can have peer reviews for assignments and quizzes to test for content memorization. Students can also do self-evaluations. When approaching evaluations, think about how you want the students to grow throughout the course. What do students need to learn about themselves and their work in order to best reach the course’s objectives? How can students most effectively be guided to success? A solid framework for evaluations is effective for enabling growth and progress.
Assignment evaluations and peer reviews are the starting point towards growth during the course. Peer reviews of assignments in particular are an especially effective tool for students to engage with each other's work and best understand what they need to do to perform at a high level. When thinking about how an assignment will be evaluated, consider what role the assignment plays in the assignment structure, and how feedback will encourage successful completion of the course objective.
- Informative feedback promotes productive learning
- Formative assessments produce better final assignments
NovoEd provides several different options when creating a peer evaluation form. From a bird's eye view, there are two main types of feedback: formal and informal.
The former, formal, is private and can accommodate both numeric and written types of feedback. Numeric feedback is a simple number score given from a set of criteria that is intended to be standardized. Written feedback is more open ended and particular to the assignment at hand, and is often much more valuable to the person receiving feedback. NovoEd provides different options for inputting both numeric and written feedback; in particular, NovoEd offers a special Feedback Capture Grid (seen below) specifically asking for written feedback about areas in which the assignment excels, lacks, is unclear, and what new ideas could be added.
Informal feedback is publicly embedded into the assignment, and mirrors a discussion forum. As a result, fosters peer-to-peer evaluation. Given that informal feedback is public, learners are incentivized to provide constructive criticism and to engage in meaningful discussion (see below for an example). Introductory text gives structure to the evaluation, and sets learner expectations.
For more information about the evaluation features, please check out our feature guide on peer review. If you want to directly put formal evaluation in place, please see here how to set up the formal evaluation process. If you want to directly put informal evaluation in place, see here.
If assignment's purpose it to foster discussion and collaborative thinking.
Main purpose is to foster discussion and peer-to-peer learning. It provides general feedback on the assignment for a clear idea of how the student did compared to assignment expectations.
If assignment's purpose is to provide straightforward feedback
Main purpose is to provide a good broad evaluation will usually focus on numeric criteria, but may include some written criteria as well.
If assignment will be further built upon, i.e. assignments from the 'Process' or 'Skill Repeat' assignment structures
Main purpose is to provide future ideas that could be used. A good guiding evaluation will intentionally allow the peer review to individualize the review for the submission with written feedback. In particular, it is important to provide open-ended peer review questions like “What concerns might you have about this moving forward?” This is also a great opportunity to use NovoEd's feedback capture grid.
If assignment will be integrated into future assignment, i.e. assignments from the 'Modularize' assignment structure
Main purpose is to perfect submission. Both opportunities for numeric scoring (how does this submission match with expectations) and text feedback (how can it be improved for the future). NovoEd's feedback capture grid can also be effective here.
Things To Check
- Will there be a place for peer reviewers to explain their numeric score?
- Is the numeric scoring rubric clear?
- Is the scoring scale small (for consistency)?
NovoEd provides the ability to demonstrate memorization and check for basic understanding through quizzes within assignments, lecture pages, and videos. Quizzes can be effective as a quick check of understanding.
- Quizzes can provide quick feedback of understanding
- Quizzes can require additional demonstration of knowledge
Example Question Templates
A recall question is a simple opportunity for the student to remember a specific fact. An example would be “What country has the world’s biggest population?” These are effective if there are specific facts a student absolutely needs to know.
A definition question is a variant of a recall question in which a student is required to show understanding of a term or phrase. This is effective if the term is necessary to understand for the course objective.
An interpretation question provides students to demonstrate they can understand what is being presented. Interpretation questions can be effective for a range of uses from graph to chart questions.
An application question requires a student to apply concepts or other knowledge to a specific situation. In this manner, students can demonstrate understanding of the concept and show that they can apply it. Often, application questions will also involve a certain amount of interpretation as well.
Things To Check
- Do you have feedback for when there is a wrong answer?
- Is there a clear intention and reason for making the students take a quiz?
To find out more about quiz types to incorporate in your courses, check out the quiz feature guide.
Encouraging self evaluations are an effective strategy to engage students in their own learning. Self reflections are a useful way for students to think deeply about their own performance and learning, which allows for both an opportunity for improvement as well as the chance remember what learning has occurred. Although it is effective, students rarely set the time aside themselves to evaluate their own performance, providing the opportunity for the course to encourage the students to do so.
When you are thinking about self evaluations, consider: what areas do you want students to take more initiative? How should students assess themselves? When would self-evaluations be the most effective?
- Provides the opportunity for students to take greater responsibility in their own learning
- Promotes active rather than reactive learning
There are definitely more methods to encourage self evaluations than what is provided below, however, these are two examples of more formalized self evaluation opportunities.
Simple questions in a quiz or survey intended to let guide self-reflection and self-assessment. This can be done as a quiz (in-lecture or assignment) or as a survey in the middle or at the end of a course.
An extra individual assignment that encourages students to reflect on their learnings during a previous task or during the course itself.
Find out here how to create an individual assignment.
Things To Check
- Are the students evaluating themselves on their progress towards the course objective?
- Do you provide the student an opportunity to plan next steps?