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Teaching Tip: Unlocking the Promise of Digital Assessment with MyOMLab

November 9, 2017

For many profs, student assessment is one of the most labor-intensive components of teaching a class. The work continues as the tests are scored, papers read, and comments shared. Performing authentic and meaningful student assessment takes time. Consequently, some instructors construct relatively few assessments for their courses.

Unfortunately, this practice limits our ability to reliably assess student learning. If a course grade is a mosaic, then each assessment is a tile. A mosaic with just a few tiles only presents a part of the picture. “We can improve the quality of our assessment mosaic by increasing the number of performances we assess,” writes Faculty Focus (Oct. 30, 2017). These smaller and more frequently administered snapshots of student learning are called “formative assessments.” The integration of frequent formative assessments improves the validity of course assessment and has been demonstrated to have a variety of benefits, including improving student achievement and helping students develop more agency over their own learning.

Our MyOMLab assessment tool allows for automatic grade responses to algorithmic homework and test questions, to multiple choice questions, and to video and OM in the News questions. In addition to simplifying formative assessment, the use of this tool has been shown to amplify student engagement. Tech-enhanced formative assessments produce actionable data that can help students learn more efficiently. (MyOMLab also automatically calculates means and medians for every assignment and exam, and, in fact, metrics for every question are summarized, including number who attempted it, number correct, number with partial credit, number incorrect, and average time spent. Plus, that information can be retained in the MyOMLab system for several years as long as the course hasn’t expired yet).

Over 60% of our text adopters have implemented MyOMLab into their OM courses. It’s easy to do (learning takes less than an hour) and Pearson’s reps are always available for one-on-one training. Here is a link to locate your local Pearson representative:  http://www.pearsonhighered.com/educator/replocator/.

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