The shift from traditional paper and pencil to next generation digital assessment

Assessment is a general term for a broad range of processes for testing, measuring, and evaluating performance. Standardized, alternative, and self-assessment methods are used for the purposes of replacement, diagnosis of performance, and provision of formative and summative evaluation.

The National Educational Technology Plan (2017) states: “As technology gives us the capability to improve on long-standing assessment approaches, our public education system has a responsibility to use the information we collect during assessment in ways that can have the greatest impact on learning. This means using assessments that ask students to demonstrate what they have learned in meaningful ways. And students and parents know there is more to a sound education than picking the right answer on a multiple-choice question or answering an extended-response question outside of the context of students’ daily lives. All learners deserve assessments that better reflect what they know and are able to do with that knowledge.” Continue reading “The shift from traditional paper and pencil to next generation digital assessment”

Exploring the Role of the School Network for Technology Integration

With the recent advent of online assessments, the capabilities of the school network have come to the forefront in many school districts across the nation (Cavanaugh, 2014). In November 2014, President Obama addressed school bandwidth issues during the inaugural superintendent summit on digital learning and future readiness. At the summit, President Obama stated, “Right now, fewer than 40 percent of public schools have high-speed Internet in their classrooms; less than half. It means that in most American schools, teachers cannot use the cutting-edge software and programs that are available today. They literally don’t have the bandwidth” (The White House, Office of the Press Secretary, 2014). In 2014, President Obama unveiled the ConnectED Initiative (ConnectED). At the unveiling, President Obama stated that many schools have the same bandwidth as an average American home but with many more users. Continue reading “Exploring the Role of the School Network for Technology Integration”

What is a MOOC?

Compared with conventional courses that charge tuition, issue college credit, and have enrollments of 20 to 30 students, MOOCs are free and do not issue credits to participants (Pappano, 2012). Since anyone with an Internet connection can register, enrollments can be enormous, occasionally numbering into the thousands (Rodriguez, 2012). Due to the large number of students, faculty cannot respond to each student individually. Students work collaboratively in study groups organized into online forums. The primary instructional medium is the video lecture. Assignments, homework, tests, and final exams may also be included.

Rodriguez (2012) studied an artificial intelligence (AI) MOOC given at the University of Stanford that had an enrollment of 160,000 students. The MOOC was taught by Sebastian Thrun and Peter Norvig, two leading experts on AI (Rodriguez 2012). The MOOC was an experiment by the Stanford University computer science department to increase technology and innovation education worldwide. Norvig and Thrun issued a certificate of accomplishment to students who completed the course (Rodriguez, 2012). The Stanford University computer science department caused a controversy in higher education with their participation in a MOOC that drew an unexpectedly large number of students taught by two of the world’s leading experts on AI (Conole, 2013). Conole (2013) noted that the AI MOOC controversy caused higher education to investigate new methods of developing online courses that would not only make more effective use of technology but also would attract a more diverse student body due to technology. Jenkins (2009) cautioned that students participating in MOOCs needed to possess adequate technology and literacy skills to find and use information effectively as is often present in connectivist learning theory. Continue reading “What is a MOOC?”

NEW PODCAST “WPS TECH TALK” NOW AVAILABLE ON SOUNDCLOUD

WILMINGTON, January 11, 2017 – Director of Technology, Dr. Anne-Marie Fiore announced that the new WPS TECH TALK podcast will be available on Sound Cloud. WPS TECH TALK will provide listeners with an insight into digital learning in the public schools of Wilmington, Massachusetts. The first episode featured information on the elementary library and technology program.

Podcast host Dr. Anne-Marie Fiore says, “Providing high-quality engaging, personalized instruction is central to our vision and mission in the Wilmington Public Schools.  Digital learning and technology integration are key to achieving our vision and critical to meeting the needs of diverse learners.  We are so fortunate to have teachers who are leading the way, here in Wilmington.”

Fans of the podcast can contact Anne-Marie Fiore via email (annemarie.fiore@wpsk12.com) to provide feedback and ideas for the podcast.

To listen to the podcast, visit https://soundcloud.com/wctvpodcasting/sets/wilmington-public-school-tech

About the Wilmington Public Schools

The Wilmington Public Schools is a high-performing district where all students are provided opportunities to learn through high-quality, rigorous curriculum and engaging, personalized instruction delivered in a safe, supportive, inclusive environment.  All members of our school community work together to develop confident, empathetic, life-long learners and responsible citizens.  Our students become innovative, creative, collaborative problem-solvers capable of making positive contributions to society.

For more information, contact Anne-Marie Fiore at annemarie.fiore@wpsk12.com or visit the official website: http://www.wpsk12.com