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Dissertation Presentation

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Amy Bentz

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Transcript of Dissertation Presentation

Using Case Method to Explicitly Teach Formative Assessment in Preservice Teacher Science Education
Amy E. Bentz
Mallinson Institute for Science Education
Western Michigan University

Doctoral Dissertation Defense
April 25, 2014

Questions?
Acknowledgments
Dr. Cobern
Dr. Fetters
Dr. Cummings
Deb Stoyanoff
Heather White
Tracy DeMars
AfL Family
MISE Community
My Family
This study was conducted as part of the Assessment for Learning Project funded by the National Science Foundation (DRL 0733590).
This research is the work of the author and does not necessarily reflect the positions of either the National Science Foundation or its officers.
Strengths, Limitations, and Future Work
Data Analysis
Results
26% shifted towards the acknowledgment of formative assessment
Pre/Post Case
Methodology
Descriptive case-study, non-experimental design

Pre/Post-case

Four cases administered and discussed between pre- and post-test.

Teaching Elementary School Science (ED 4010)

Upper division elementary science methods course

Lecture, lab, discussion

37 students participated

5 cases total:

4 individual cases
1 pre/post case covering all of the formative assessment topics

Based on the National Science Education Standards

Range in grade level appropriateness from 1st-7th grade.

The ED 4010 instructor ran the case discussions

Cases were read prior to class discussion

Outline for how best to facilitate case discussion

Attend all class discussions as a silent observer
-field notes
-checklist of essential points

DESIGN
PARTICIPANTS
INSTRUMENT
FACILITATION
Case 1: Providing clear learning objectives and success criteria
Case 2: Collecting appropriate evidence of learning
Case 3: Providing guided and scaffolded feedback
Case 4: Offering opportunities for self- and peer-assessment
Research Questions
1. To what extent does the implementation of formative assessment cases in methods instruction influence preservice elementary science teachers' knowledge of formative assessment?

2. What descriptive characteristics change between the preservice teachers' pre-case written reflection and post-case written reflection that would demonstrate learning had occurred?

Breaking it Down
Formative Assessment
Preservice Teacher Education
Case Method
Formative Assessment is a process.

Learning objectives
Evidence of learning
Feedback
Peer- and self-assessment
Ownership of learning
Case method describes a methodological teaching approach in which descriptive educational stories are used to promote student learning






“Real-world” situations
Encourage students to connect with the curricular material

Existed since 1920s
Became well organized in 1960s and 1970s
Classroom management, grading, diversity, instructional practices, student learning, etc.

Formative assessment improves student learning, yet few teachers practice it consistently.
Activities involved in this type of teaching approach include:

guided class discussion
student reflection and decision-making
peer discussion
teacher and peer feedback
In education, case method supports and promotes:

-development of critical analysis and problem solving skills
-encouragement of reflective thinking
-gaining familiarity with complex situations
-exposure to settings and contexts not yet experienced
-an active learning environment
Ill-structured problems/problem-based learning
Abell, et al., 1998; Abell & Volkmann, 2006; Andrews, 2002; Buck & Trauth-Nare, 2009; Buck, et al., 2010; Cowen, 2009; Griffin, 2003; Harrington, 1995; Hewitt, et al., 2003; Levin, 1995; Nesbitt & Cliff, 2008; Rosen, 2008; Wiliam, et al., 2004

Situated Learning/Anchored Instruction
Abell, et al., 1998; Buck & Trauth-Nare, 2009; Buck, et al., 2010; Cowen, 2009; Griffin, 2003; Harrington, 1995; Levin, 1995; Sato et al., 2008; Wiliam, et al., 2004

-Time commitment
-Skill/comfort level of facilitator
-"Coverage" of material

-Maturity of students
-Student fatigue/absenteeism
-Pre-existing conceptions

-Abbreviated cases
-Combine PCK with formative assessment
-Longitudinal studies
FINDINGS
Shifting Away
Remaining the Same
Shifting Towards
-Switch to teacher mind-frame

-Apply skills/knowledge to teaching situations with discussion of outcomes

-Engage in discussion about future challenges
Cases:

-creating measurable, explicit learning objectives
-using appropriate methods to collect evidence of learning
-using feedback to modify instruction and help guide student learning
-using explicit objectives as criteria for self/peer-assessment
Discussions:

-teacher to student-centered classroom
-viewing the learning objectives as a target to "hit" when self-assessing
-"students will be able to..."
-group work does not equate to peer-assessment
69% remained the same
Even though these preservice teachers were coded remaining the same, many of the post-case reflections included additional information to help support their claim.

-Amount of detail increased within the post-case reflection

-Preservice teachers applied examples or ideas from the case or case discussions
5% shifted away from the acknowledgment of formative assessment
Pre-case reflections supported some aspect of formative assessment. Post-case reflections changed to either contradict previous reflection or to reflect on an issue unrelated to formative assessment.

-"Introductory" set of lessons

-Completion of assignment was evidence of understanding

Research Question 1
Research Question 2
Identifying changes in the descriptive characteristics between preservice teachers' pre- and post-case reflections that would demonstrate
learning
has occurred.
The purpose of providing preservice teachers with case methodological experiences was to help foster the skills of teaching with formative assessment, in the context that was applicable to a real classroom experience.
1. Evaluation 2. Questioning 3. Application
Post-case reflections:

-
Evaluation
of case content to acknowledge the lack of student involvement or the opportunity for students to determine their level of understanding.
-
Questioning
the appropriateness of the assessment methods and the relationship between the learning objective and the activities.


-
Application
of formative assessment strategies (e.g. "I can" and "glows and grows") and characteristics (e.g. need for learning objectives to be measurable; feedback based on objectives; opportunities for students to use feedback to improve learning).
Pre-Case:

"I think that there were appropriate lesson objectives in this lesson. I wish the objectives were listed out before going through the detail of the lesson, but the
procedures of the lesson fit the objectives well
."
Post- Case:

"I think that the objective, 'to introduce the idea of the fossils' that Ms. Miller set could be said in more detail. I think the teacher should
give an objective where it specifically said what you want the students to get out
of when the teacher introduces the fossil. For example, when Ms. Miller introduced the fossils, she told the class what the fossil is and how the fossils are formed. So, Ms. Miller could change the objective to, '
Students will be able to
tell what a fossil is and how fossils are formed." This way it is
more specific
than just setting an objective, 'to introduce the idea of fossils.'"
Pre-Case:

The students don't know the objectives ahead of time before the lesson the students eventually figure it out, but is important to state the objectives ahead of time.
Pre/Post-Case Question 2: Did the lesson provide students with a good understanding of what the teacher expected them to learn from the lesson?
Post-Case:

Yes it does because there are many different types of learning, but I think she should have given more examples so the students could see exactly what was expected of them.
Pre/Post-Case Question 1: Are these appropriate learning objectives for this lesson?
Pre/Post-Case Question 4: Do you think Ms. Miller collected enough evidence that her students understood the learning objectives for the lesson?
Pre-Case:

"Yes, at multiple points she tested the kids to judge their understanding of the goals. She used multiple-choice, journal entries, and student surveys in order to do this."
Post-Case:

"I do not think Ms. Miller collected enough evidence of student understanding over the four-day period, to show that her students understood the lesson objectives. Her evidence collected was weak, and primarily summative assessment with little student discussion or challenge. Many of her methods included right/wrong answer questions. Also an example is found at the close of day 1. Ms. Miller make sure her students understood by summarizing the content herself, so she had absolutely no evidence that any of them understood. It was also difficult to gauge understanding because the objectives were not talked about throughout the four days. She did not have evidence that the actual objective was clearly understood by her students."
Pre/Post-Case Question 5: Based on the lesson objectives, in what ways do the lesson activities provide an assessment for student learning?
Pre-Case:

"During the lessons the students did a self-assessment of what they knew about fossils before the lesson, to give Ms. Miller an idea of where each child's learning was before she began her unit."
Post-Case:

"The way this relates to a form of assessment is because at any point the teacher can ask the students to engage in their results. This could be completed through sharing with their partners, whole group discussions, or even collection and evaluation of results by the teacher. I felt that this was an effective way to place the responsibility of learning into the hands of the fourth grade students in the classroom."
Pre/Post-Case Question 5: Based on the lesson objectives, in what ways do the lesson activities provide an assessment for student learning?
Pre-Case:

"I feel the lesson objective should have been altered to say: students will understand that fossils can be formed at different points in time. If the objective were to be changed the assessments that the teacher collected after each lessons would suffice."
Post-Case:

“The students produce an artifact for each lesson, which helps Ms. Miller assess their work.”
Pre/Post-Case Question 6: How does Ms. Miller incorporate feedback in the lesson? In what ways do you think the feedback encouraged student learning? In what ways do you think the feedback encouraged improvements in teaching?
Pre-Case:

"She never gave feedback for the first journal (although she had them use it later in pure conversation which was probably more helpful than feedback she would've given) and her marking of a star or x on the question sheets (which students also discussed in groups) was purely for grading, not for feedback. "
Post-Case:


“I liked the 3-2-1 feedback [exit pass] students did halfway through the lesson. Students were encouraged to consider what they learned, didn't learn and what they wanted to learn.”
Pre/Post-Case Question 6: How does Ms. Miller incorporate feedback in the lesson? In what ways do you think the feedback encouraged student learning? In what ways do you think the feedback encouraged improvements in teaching?
Pre-Case:

"She [the teacher] asks the students to write down what they have learned, what they have questions about, and what they would like to learn. This helped engage students because they felt like they were learning about things they actually wanted to. "
Post-Case:

"She [the teacher] incorporates feedback by asking students to write down things they still have questions on and think they wanted to learn about. This helped encourage student learning because they were able to tell where they needed more help and what they wanted to know more about."
Pre/Post-Case Question 6: How does Ms. Miller incorporate feedback in the lesson? In what ways do you think the feedback encouraged student learning? In what ways do you think the feedback encouraged improvements in teaching?
Pre-Case:

“The feedback encourages student learning by allowing the students to reflect on their learning. They were able to write down the information they learned and encourage them to ask more questions and give Miss Miller feedback.”
Post-Case:

"It [exit slips] gives students a chance to give feedback to Ms. Miller and allowed her students to have a choice in the lesson. This feedback encourages student learning by giving students a chance to have a say in what they need to learn to reach the objective. The students were able to give Ms. Miller an understanding of what they were struggling with and had questions on. And encourages students to really reflect on their learning and showed that Ms. Miller cared about their learning."
Pre-Case:

“I think there are plenty of opportunities everyday throughout the lesson where the teacher could give the students feedback.”
Post-Case:

Ms. Miller didn't incorporate feedback too much in this lesson. In the reflection in their journals Ms. Miller marks it with a star if they answered the questions and with an x if they did not answer all of the questions. I don't think that this type of feedback really encourages student learning at all, it just tells the student whether or not they completed the assignment. I think that this type of feedback does give the teacher an opportunity to see where her students are at and adjust the rest of her lesson to get every student on track.
“These [individual work activities] gave time for each student to self assess because they were able to take the time to think about what they knew and what they still needed to learn about.”

“I think the purpose of individual work was a way for the teacher to see individual progress/understanding thus far.”

“Individual work served as formative assessment for the teacher, although she didn't really use it to help her teaching or learning about student comprehension.”
Pre/Post-Case Question 7: When thinking about student learning throughout this lesson, what purpose did both group and individual work serve? Did these activities provide an opportunity for students to peer- and self-assess their work? Explain your answer.

“While working in groups, students were able to have conversations in their groups and share the different ideas each person had. This creates many diverse conversations and opens the eyes of some students to think in different ways.”

“The group work served to help students work collaboratively, as real scientists do, to come up with ideas…”

“Group work served as formative assessment for the teacher, although she didn't really use it to help her teaching or learning about student comprehension.”
“The 3-2-1 reflections at the end of day 2 were great examples of self-assessment that gave the teacher useful feedback.”

“The individual assessments could have served as a self-assessment. The students could look back at the feedback given from Ms. Miller and used that as a guide to understand and see where they were.”

“Group work was for discovering and learning while the individual work was more for assessment in the teacher's benefit.”

Individual work served as an opportunity to reflect on whether or not they were understanding the material and were able to reflect on themselves…The individual work gave the students a chance to self-assess because they had to think about what they had learned and think about what was clear/unclear.


Pre-Case:

"I do not believe that there were any true moments where the students were given the opportunity to peer-evaluate, other than insight that could have come from whole group discussions."


Pre/Post-Case Question 7: When thinking about student learning throughout this lesson, what purpose did both group and individual work serve? Did these activities provide an opportunity for students to peer- and self-assess their work? Explain your answer.

Post-Case:

"In a surface level sense, yes I do believe that the activities acted as a method of peer­ evaluation. I think that the small group discussion was the most effective tool/activity used to assist in student/peer evaluation."
Pre/Post-Case Question 8: How would you incorporate additional self- and peer-assessment opportunities?
Pre-Case:

"For self-assessment on the first day, the students could complete a concept map about what they learned about fossils and how they are found. Then, Ms. Miller could conduct a short, whole class review about the material and the students could check to see what they did/did not include on their concept map. To self-assess for the journal reflections, the teacher could have read through each question to facilitate a whole class discussion and the student could fill in any information they were missing and make stars next to information they did include."
Post-Case:

"I would use worksheets, graphics, or poster projects where the students would need to define what a fossil is and they would need to describe what about the fossil that helps scientists to know about past environments based on the fossils (the depth they are buried) and why."
Pre/Post-Case Question 2: Did the lesson provide students with a good understanding of what the teacher expected them to learn from the lesson?
Pre-Case:

"Ms. Miller tells her students, summarized, that different events happen over time, and used fossils to show the students that animals or plants lived at different time periods. The teacher also explained what the activities were and after, talked about their results/findings and what that meant."
Post-Case:

"I do not think this lesson gave the students a good understanding of what they teacher is expecting them to learn. The teacher did not give
appropriate assessments
to the students and did not give them
appropriate feedback
that provided the students with what the teacher expected them to learn from the lesson. The teacher
did not reflect or repeat the objectives
of the lesson throughout the activities they performed and
didn't measure the students learning
."
Pre-Case:

"I don't believe that any of the teacher's assessments did a good job of directly addressing the specific learning objectives."
Pre-Case:

"The objectives given are appropriate for this lesson because it introduces what fossils are and what caused these fossils to form. It allows any misconception students may have to be addressed. These objectives started "small" and then worked up to be an interactive investigation."
Pre-Case:

"I would provide time for students to participate more. To be able to ask questions throughout the lesson."

Post-Case:

"I would incorporate more student-based learning activities. A good peer assessment would be something that we
learned in class called glows and grows
. After working with a partner or small group have each member assess each other with what they liked and what can be worked on,
based on the expected objectives
."

Pre-Case:

"I feel that
not all the lessons/objectives go together
. They also
don't seem appropriate
for what she is trying. To be honest, I have no idea what she is trying to teach. The first objective (the opening activity)
didn't seem to really go with the topic
."
Post- Case:

"Since this is
just an introductory lesson
into the whole unit on fossils, then I feel that
these are good objectives
to have. The teacher just wants to give students a few
main ideas
about what fossils are and why they are important. Also, she uses the lesson to probe a student misconception about fossils wrong."
Pre/Post-Case Question 1: Are these appropriate learning objectives for this lesson?
Pre-Case:

"
I do not think the lesson provided the students with a good understanding of what the teacher expected them to learn
. I think this because the objectives are what the student is supposed to learn from the lesson. I do not think the students would be able to look at a fossil and explain what kind of environment it came from. I think they would be able to tell us how old, or the appropriate age of the fossil or even what the fossil is. According to the lesson, I don't think the students have a good understanding of what they're expected to learn."


Pre/Post-Case Question 2: Did the lesson provide students with a good understanding of what the teacher expected them to learn from the lesson?
Pre-Case:

"Her assignment on three things they'd learned, two things they had questions about, and one thing they wanted to talk about provided Ms. Miller with feedback in the middle of the lesson. The feedback
encouraged improvements in teaching
by informing Ms. Miller about what her students still had questions or were unsure about so she could
readdress that information
."



Pre/Post-Case Question 6: How does Ms. Miller incorporate feedback in the lesson? In what ways do you think the feedback encouraged student learning? In what ways do you think the feedback encouraged improvements in teaching?
Pre/post-Case Question 3: What did Ms. Miller do to help students understand the lesson objectives? What could she do to improve student understanding of the lesson objectives?

Pre-Case:

"To help students learn the lesson objectives, Ms. Miller didn't do anything."
Post-Case:

"
The lesson provided students with a good understanding of what the teacher expected them to learn
. The objectives of the lesson were to introduce the idea of fossils and help scientists understand past environments, animals, and plants. The lesson was to not fully explain every detail about fossils,
it was to introduce
the ideas of what a fossil is.
The students completed activities
, such as determining what fossils can tell them about their pretend fields past environment,
in order to meet these objectives.
"
Post-Case:

"The case
did not indicate whether she provided feedback
on the students' three, two, one exit slip. Her feedback on the questions students answered in their science journals was simply
complete or incomplete
, based on whether they answered all of the questions. Throughout the lesson Ms. Miller did provide explanation and clarification of activities and concepts, however
this was not feedback for students' work
. Her lack of feedback likely did not do much to encourage student learning.
Hopefully Ms. Miller used
the students' three, two, one
exit slips to improve her teaching
by informing her of where she should focus her attention."
Post-Case:

"Ms. Miller touches on the objectives
through
lecture
. In addition,
Ms. Miller
notes
that some fossils have features that indicate they were aquatic and others have features that indicate they probably lived on land.
Ms. Miller then
concludes
by talking about how the environment may be different from the environment investigated on the previous day when the 'hole' wasn't very deep.
Students now know that information, but how well?
They have no chance to actually use it further, and the information doesn't ever get brought up again."
Post-Case:

"They are a great start to showing what the teacher wants students to learn, but Ms. Miller needs to make sure that her
objectives have a purposeful meaning
that children will remember. When thinking about lessons the teacher needs to think about the start of the objectives as
'I can'
statements.
What do these lesson objectives say in 'I can' statements?"
Findings and
Case Question 4: Over the four-day period, do you think Ms. Miller collected enough evidence that her students understood the learning objectives for this lesson? Explain your answer.
Post-Case:

"I do not think Ms. Miller collected enough evidence of student understanding over the four-day period to show that her students understood the lesson objectives. Her evidence collected was
weak
, and primarily
summative
assessment with little student discussion or challenge. Many of her methods included "right/wrong" answer questions. Also an example is found at the close of day 1. Ms. Miller made sure her students understood by
summarizing the context herself
, so she had
absolutely no evidence that any of them understood
. It was also difficult to gauge understanding because the
objectives were not talked about
throughout the four days."
Case Question 8: How would you incorporate additional self- and peer-assessment opportunities?
Case Question 1: Are these appropriate learning objectives for this lesson?
Full transcript