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505

Professional Reflection 5

This is the last week before heading into the final week of instruction for the summer session of 2011.  It has been a very busy week with the collaboration on an evaluation proposal.  The evaluation proposal is a significant undertaking that involves all we have learned up to this point in the course.  The previous week we were able to get our feet wet with creating a smaller evaluation proposal to become more familiar with the process and steps involved.  This weeks evaluation proposal incorporates all the fundamentals and principles of developing a creditable document.

The collaboration project incorporated the use of 6 surveys that rated the quality and effectiveness of 6 educational websites.  The survey data was collected and made available from Dr. Perkins, we then use the data for our evaluation proposals to create spreadsheets.  The spreadsheets showed values from a scale in the form of a graph illustrating the responses to the questions form the surveys.  When conducting a evaluation proposal this is the process in which a person my collect data for determining the quality of a service, product or information based on the desires of the hiring group.  With each assignment we have completed up to now, they have prepared us for exactly what we are collaborating on.

The next step of preparing the evaluation proposal is to develop the actual proposal using the data and relevant information pertaining to the 6 websites that were surveyed.  The proposal is divided up into a cover slide, the introduction slide, a summary slide, the site report, the recommendation slide, and the conclusion slide.  Although this has been a long process for creating the proposal, it has been very beneficial.  The information and knowledge gained through this activity has and will enable me to be able to conduct my own educated surveys of websites and other significant aspects of my instruction and assessment processes.

Conducting a working survey, YouTube video

 

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Professional Reflection 4

 

After a very busy week last wee in 505, this week has been a breath of fresh air and a chance to catch my breath.  The collaboration with a classmate on the Evaluation Proposal was a great way to dip my toes a little deeper in to the waters of program evaluations.  The opportunity to talk and gain further insight into program evaluations with my project collaborator has been evaluable.  Although, both of us are taking the course as students I believe we were able to learn from each other as we dissected our projects to create one joint project.  We both had good contributions to the collaborated project.

Developing the a proposed evaluation project is an undertaking that requires the use of quality written and video resources to assure that your produced project is at the highest quality possible.  Learning and understanding the nuances of a program evaluation can be dome by reading alone, it requires a more hands approach.  The fundamentals of constructing an evaluation starts with knowing the basic anatomy of the evaluation process.  By doing the research the week prior and applying that knowledge with the information gained through developing our project evaluation.  The creation of a new evaluation proposal came to be that much effective.

I have found that information is somewhat scarce when researching evaluation processes and evaluation fundamentals.  The evaluation field seems somewhat new in the areas of producing artifacts for peer review or student learning.  In particular, YouTube has very little information when it comes to instructional material for developing an evaluation, the processes involved in an evaluation, and the fundamentals of creating an evaluation.  This seems to be a field that has not yet been explored by many in the way of video blogs.

I will have to refute Clarks claim that media does not increase learning in students.  Clark claims that any one time of media can be replaced with another to produce the same levels of learning.  There are currently many websites and videos on the Internet today that allow a student to participate in.  The student is able to gain new knowledge through practice and interaction with the websites.  One website in particular, Kahn Academy, is an interactive website that takes a student through the fundamentals of math problems and allows the student to practice their new learned skills.  This is just one resource for a student to learn new skills and practice those skills to ensure success in the classroom.  There are thousands of websites that have educational value to them.

YouTube video of the inception of Kahn Academy.

References:

Clark, R. E., (1994). Media will never influence learning. Educational Technology Research and Development, Vol. 42, No. 2 (1994), pp. 21-29Published by: SpringerStable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/30218684

http://www.khanacademy.org/

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Professional Reflection 3

This has been by far the most involved week for the 505 course at BSU.  The research for finding an evaluation report that has been performed and posted turned out to reveal new information.  I was fortunate to find an evaluation report that was done for a school district Ed-Tech department.  I found this to be very interesting reading considering my career field in teaching Ed-Tech at a middle school level.  The task of listing key components and summaries of the report allowed me to see the evaluation process in a different light.

The second part of the week that really had an impact was taking the reading test, which was presented in the form of creating a slideshow.   I thought by incorporating graphics as metaphors along with typing in the definition and an explanation of the metaphor was everlasting.  This method of completing the test caused a lot more thought to go into the terms and their relevance in everyday life.

Creating a hypothetical evaluation proposal took a lot more thought and energy then I thought it would.  Along with the resources provided, I still found myself researching more information for clarity and examples.  I enjoyed the process of gathering information and creating a proposal from chapter information, examples and fictitious characters.

The one thing that stands out the most to me is the reading test format.  I thought it was unique and provided for a lot of reflection on what we had covered in the first 3 weeks.  I am very interested in seeing how the final project will end up.

A YouTube video about a new approach to creating a program evaluation.  Great video with lots of relevant and key information.

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Log Entry 2

In the third week of EdTech 505 Evaluation for Educational Technologist, we have explored a selected list of terms associated with the evaluation process.  There are two concepts that stand out to me in the list.  The first is the relationship between evaluation and research.  In all my research on the two different topics what I was able to conclude is that Research is a process of observation without the intent to change the process and Evaluation is the process of observation with the intent to modify the process or outcome.  The second part of the term list that stands out to me is the EPD (Evaluators Program Description), without this information an evaluator cannot perform a correct or complete evaluation.  Our text states that,

an EPD is a statement prepared by the evaluator after working with stakeholders to amplify and clarify all aspects of the program, including goals, objectives, activities and anticipated outcomes (Boulmetis & Dutwin 2005).

The project forecast was somewhat difficult to get my hands around.  As a middle school teacher that teaches technology there are more than enough quality topics to choose from during the school year.  However, because of the summer session this took a lot more digging to come up with a topic that not only I was interested in but could also support the processes for the evaluations.  The project I chose was to evaluate a set of instructional videos that a technology teacher in the Salt Lake area created.  I use the videos in my instruction when we do the Boom-a-Rang project as part of the transportation lesson.  I believe the videos are well conceived but there is room for improvement on many different levels.  Not only will the final project help me evaluate and create a better set of videos for my lesson, but also will provide me with the tools to evaluate all my lessons to make them more effective for the students and myself.

YouTube video about classroom evaluations.

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Log Entry 1

In the first three chapters of the textbook, The ABC’s of Evaluation, by J. Boulmetis and P. Dutwin, I was introduced to the different concepts and methods for conducting evaluations.  In my profession as a middle school technology teacher, I am constantly evaluating the learners through formal and informal methods.  Prior to taking the EdTech course 505 Evaluations for Educational Technologist, I admittedly had not given as much consideration as was needed to how and when I conducted my evaluations of the learners and their artifacts.  Since my first blog entry, I have become much more aware of the need and importance to conduct an evaluator’s program description.  The EPD will help me produce a more meaningful and in-depth formal and informal evaluation of all lesson activities.  The EPD directly relates to the program planning cycle that consists of the following steps; needs analysis, program planning, program implementation and formative evaluation, and the final summative evaluation.  Choosing the right evaluation model is crucial to conducting a decisive and thorough evaluation of the correct processes, activities and artifacts.  A few of the models include; discrepancy, goal-free, transaction, decision, and goal-based.  The discrepancy model which would work well in my class and most if not all science classes, the goal free model which is the most difficult to apply to most situations.  The transaction model is best suited for monitoring activities and process where feedback can be exchanged freely.  The decision model is more concerned with the long-range effects of the model. The goal-based model is interested in the stated objects or goals found.  All the previous models take into consideration the qualitative and quantitative levels of data collected to provide the truest evaluation possible.  The collection of data to develop an evaluation is conducted through evaluation or research.  What is the difference between the two?  Research is observation with no intent to change the processes or outcomes and evaluation is done with the intent to make adjustments to the process to affect the outcome.

All in all, the last two weeks has taught me more than I ever knew about the evaluation process, this includes pre, during, and post implementation of a lesson or project.  By taking all this into consideration, it gives better feedback to the learners, which helps them understand what areas they mastered and areas that need additional work.

 

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