April 3, 2013

Dear Otto: Any Ideas for Tech Ed Benchmark Assessments?

tech questionsDear Otto is an occasional column where I answer questions I get from readers about teaching tech. If you have a question, please complete the form below and I’ll answer it here. For your privacy, I use only first names.

Here’s a great question I got from Lisa and Tamma:

My district is asking us to create assessments. I was wondering what you have included in them and how/when you administer them. Thanks!

Hi Lisa and Tamma

Keyboarding is always good, but there are some other excellent choices. I have an exercise I run students through called the Problem Solving Board. They teach each other how to solve the 20 most common problems (you can get them from this book or from the tech tips on my blog). Follow up with a quiz to see how much they remember–in groups or from a student-generated web-based problem-solving page.
I also have assessments for Word, Publisher, Excel, and hardware (click links for ideas). Students can take these at the beginning of school and then later in the year to assess improvement. And finally: Here’s a link from The Innovative Educator with some ideas.
If you aren’t looking for quantitative assessments, here are a list of 14 qualitative assessments that work well in an inquiry-based classroom.

It’s an interesting question, one I’m often asked. I’d love to get feedback from other teachers. Any ideas?

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Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-8 technology for 15 years. She is the editor of a K-8 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum, and creator of technology training books for how to integrate technology in education. She is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy. She is webmaster for six blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, Editorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing Teachers, presentation reviewer for CSTA, Cisco guest blogger, a monthly contributor to TeachHUB, columnist for Examiner.com, featured blogger for Technology in Education, and IMS tech expert. Currently, she’s editing a techno-thriller that should be out to publishers next summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.

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