Comprehensive Assessment Tracking System


Inspired by Proust: A Multi-Sensory Approach to Memorizing Principle Verb Parts in ESL

Drawing inspiration from French philospher Marcel Proust, who wrote of the connection between involuntary memories & physical stimuli (e.g. smell),  students were given 10 study cards which were color, flavor, & scent-coordinated to facilitate memorization of English principle verb parts (simple, simple past, & past participle forms) in an ESL030 Grammar III course.

Practice does make perfect with Graphing in MAT 182

Students in MAT 182 seem to constantly struggle with the graphing section in the course. I have added days in for practice, given worksheets and still results seem to be lower than I was expecting. This current semester I continued with the practice worksheet that has 10 graphing problems where they are to use a table to help them graph, identify amplitude, phase shift and period, as well as of course graph the function. However, this semester I tried giving them two separate packets where all I did was change the numbers around and change a few numbers in the function.

Positive Affirmations and Meditation to Improve Student Performance

I utilize several techniques to assist my students with their anxiety and "fear" of math.

The first day, they journal about their perceptions and past experiences in math.  These give me an overview of my class atmosphere.  I then share how studies in nueroscience show that anxiety potentially affects their learning.  I give them a sheet of positve affirmations (see attached) and ask them place the sheet at the front of their binders.  If a student experiences doubt or verbally expresses "I can't do this", "I am stupid" etc, I ask them to read their yellow sheet :-)

Formative assessment & adaptive teaching with Kahoot!

Intervention background:

In my TTH hybrid class, students complete assignments every MWF. Some assignments include grammar video tutorials and questions based on the videos.  

In-class group work and HW scores told me students had mastered the use of double object pronouns.  However, students performed poorly (79.8% average) on the timed chapter exam (50 seconds per question).

Does incorporating a kinesthetic assignment improve student learning of a complex topic?

Gene expression is a complex multi-step process that students struggle to learn. There are many terms to memorize and then students need to remember the functions and roles of all the molecular players and the order in which each molecule participates in the overall process. I currently use lecture, diagrams, animations, a worksheet and websites to teach this topic and I have also incorporated a hands-on lab using manipulatives where the students create their own working model of gene expression using yarn, foam pieces, pasta, playdoh, post-its and other random junk (see attached pics).

Direction Fields

Students struggle with using direction fields to solve a given problem.  In the 1st two semesters, lecture was primarily used with handouts and group work being utlized more in the last 3 semesters.  Students have continually received a C grade on the direction field exam question and a C/B average on homework questions.  In Fall 2014, the handout was modified, and students worked in groups with no guidance from the instructor.  Technology as incorporated as well (MATLAB) to graph the direction fields.  Once students finished the handout, follow up was given by me.

Bacterial Minicases

Minicases provided to students contain info about the bacterium from the patient and the patient signs/symptoms. The objective for the students is to correctly ID which organism causes the infection and explain why to support their answer. Minicases provide info concerning both of the areas(bacteria & patient) in 2-4 sentences. I wanted to see if students could id these two areas cold turkey - no lecture from me, just reading the minicase. The majority of students just identified bacteria info as important - 70%. Only 25% identified both disease info and bacterial info.

Unit 3 ASL Practice: Places You Have Gone To

After learning some foundation of American Sign Language, students are expected to sign a short story.  On my video, I signed about three places I have gone to in the past, whom I went to, and what we did at these places.  Then I asked students to tell me the three places they have gone to, with whom, and what did they do.  There is no caption or translation on the video, and students are expected to understand what I am signing about.

In-class Metacognitive/Reflective Grade Check Activities

My courses require online grade checks in week 3, 6, 9 and 12; however, low scoring students were not taking significant action to change their study habits. So I implemented in-class metacognitive/reflective activities the day after the grade checks where due (see attached document).

Final grade comparison:

JRN 201, Spring 2014, 8 completing students:

4 As, 1 B, 3 Cs, 0 failing students

Compared to

JRN 201, Fall 2013, 7 completing students:

1 A, 2 Bs, 2 Cs, 1 D, 1 F