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Assessing Student Performance

How would you answer the following questions:

  • Does my instruction make a difference in students' job performance?

  • How much have students' knowledge and skill changed as a result of being in my courses?

  • What could I show to parents, administrators, guidance, business representatives, and legislators to prove that students have benefited from being in my courses and that they are able to apply the information I've presented?

One tool that has found favor with educators in recent years that can help you show that students are advancing and benefiting from your instruction is performance assessment.

Available Rubrics

Assessing student performance is no easy task.  It’s extremely difficult to remove the individual subjectivity and evaluator bias.  Traditional assessment tools using typical
1–5 scales offer minimal guidance.  What’s a “4” mean?  How does a “4” for this student compare with a “4” given a second student? 

Even more challenging, how can we use different evaluators to assess groups of students.  Think about competitive events where your students are “judged” by different business-people.  Is it fair to rank students on the basis of scores provided by different evaluators?  (Hint:  Obviously it’s not.)  Do so-called statistical adjustments make it OK to compare one judge’s “4” with another’s?  (Hint:  Statisticians will say “definitely not.”)

What to do?  Current instructional (assessment) methodology suggests that the most appropriate (and valid, reliable) assessments are done on the basis of sophisticated
rubrics that clearly describe in detail the desired behavior.

MBAResearch has prepared a series of research-based rubrics that are designed
to minimize the subjectivity and bias inherent in most realistic assessment.  Each rubric includes both the assessment tool itself and one or more scenarios that can be used to set up the skill demonstration.

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