I’m a bit late for last week’s post, but I laughed right out loud when I read the suggested topic for last week as I tried to clear my creativity block.
As many of you know, I’m the campus lead for course-level assessment. I’ve been involved with assessment to various degrees, seeing all the changes that have transpired, for the last 15+ years. What a ride it’s been!
I think our campus has made enormous strides in guiding assessment to a place where it is more relevant and inclusive over the last 2 years, under the direction of Julie Morrison, but there is so much more to do!
Last week, I ran into another example of a faculty member who doesn’t see the merit of documented assessment. I have fought long and hard against the mindset of “it doesn’t matter anyway,” and yet it persists.
The thing is, I *know* that we all assess, practically 100% of the time, with every passing moment of class. The problem is that we have to prove it to “higher powers.” The only way to do this is to document the progress being made. I understand the viewpoint of those who fund colleges (etc) wanting to see progress. Yes, I know it’s nearly insulting to have to prove that we’re helping our students learn and grow as individuals, and that’s the frustrating part. But it is what it is. The sad part is that apparently it won’t “matter” to some people until money gets tied into the equation. And that is where I’ll be most unhappy – if we literally have to prove our “worth.”
I actually find joy in assessing my students, both qualitatively and formally. The reason I teach is to get the “a-ha” or “lightbulb” moments from my students. I just want to show others the joy of that too and to show those “others” out there how AWESOME we really are!!