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English 622

ENGL 622: Assessment in Digital and Online Language Arts

Prerequisites: None

Credits: (3)

This course provides prospective and practicing teachers with a grounding in the nature of assessment as a fundamental aspect of instructional design.  It then extends that study to the theory and practice of assessment, and to definitions and diverse variations on the nature of meaningful assessment.  Students construct multiple assessment instruments designed to draw upon a wide variety of digital media and expressive options, both online and on local devices.


Detailed Description of Course

Students investigate the potential opportunities and potential problems involved with conducting assessment work across distances and in an environment rich in digital storage devices capable of almost instantly accessing the Internet and the resources available through the Internet.  Learners explore the nature of assessment as an inferential act based on performance-based evidence while also exploring the nature of validity as a product of evidence-based inferences.  Additional topics involve alignment of assessment instruments with content and context, ayering values onto assessment instruments to evaluate performances, and contemporary mores associated with standardized assessment instruments widely used in schools.  Practical assignmentss include the design and implementation of a variety of assessment instruments using both traditional technology and digital tools.


Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

ENGL 622 offers a variety of learning opportunities which may include but are not limited to student involvement in whole-class threaded discussions, small-group projects carried out through online collaboration, independent and collaborative research, individual reading responses to selections taken from reference texts (responses typically posted as journal entries for further discussion), individualized instructional planning activities for online and traditional delivery, peer editing and review of work in threaded discussion spaces, and video and open publishing projects (blog, glog, wiki, vimeo, etc.).  Additional work may include traditional essays with researched content.  The intent is to encourage a pragmatic understanding of the potential utility—and potential for inaccuracy—in any assessment instrument, but also to offer students opportunities to design and pilot a variety of assessment instruments in their own instructional settings.


Goals and Objectives of this Course

Upon completion of this course, students  will:

1. Be able to identify a wide variety of contemporary, digital devices appropriate for the administration of assessment instruments (e.g. e-readers, smart phones, tablets, etc.).

2. Be able to describe a variety of student products appropriate for assessing student performance.

3. Be able to distinguish between potential Universal Design for Learning (UDL) applications and Assistive Technology (AT) applications appropriate for assessment instrument enhancements and accommodations.

4. Be able to describe how strong arguments for the validity of an assessment instrument depend on multiple performances across extended periods of time.

5. Be competent to independently research and evaluate research findings related to the validity of various assessment instruments.


Assessment Measures

• writing activities such as readers’ logs, journals and threaded discussions

• examinations on assigned readings

• essays on assigned topics and on student-selected topics

• formal, researched essays on assigned or student-selected topics

• digital media-based presentations and open publishing products such as blog entries and videos

• short instructional plans designed to address specific topics and audiences in language arts

• longer instructional plans designed to address multiple topics in language arts with a shared theme


Other Course Information



Review and Approval

May 15, 2013