7.1. Formative and summative evaluation
7.2. Continuous and comprehensive evaluation
CONTINUOUS AND COMPREHENSIVE EVALUATION
Evaluation is the systematic collection and interpretation of evidence leading as a part of process to a judgement of value with a view of action. Evaluation is the collection, analysis and interpretation of information about any aspect of a program of education as part of a recognized process of judging its effectiveness, its efficiency and any other outcome it may have. The required data is to be gathered in a systematic, planned, precise way. The information obtained is to be interpreted meaningfully to arrive at a judgement on the efficiency in realizing the goal. It should aim at successful future action. It helps us to realize objectives, check learning readiness, report students’ progress and diagnosis. Evaluation provides feedback to the students. They can know the strengths and weakness in various areas and have a check of study habits, interests etc. Diagnosis and remedies are the most important areas of application of evaluation. The objectives, learning experiences etc. are directly related to evaluation. Thus, in the planning stage itself, teachers formulate techniques for evaluation. During teaching and also during post learning, evaluation and its results play vital role. For promotion, placement, grading, grouping etc. also the academic and non-academic aspects are to be evaluated.
Evaluation has a wide range of application in the areas of human activity. When we consider educational evaluation, it would be found to cover a large variety of aspects or dimensions. These include evaluation of the various infrastructure required for the proper functioning of an educational institution in terms of the norms fixed. The various academic inputs such as the curriculum, text books, instruction materials, laboratory, library etc. have to be got evaluated as to how well these could meet the requirements for effective instruction. While discussing the concept of evaluation, citing the example of the Mathematics achievement score of a student, it was shown how evaluation acts as a motivating force self-evaluation by the teacher, leading to adoption of modified techniques and strategies of instructions for the purpose for realizing the anticipated educational goal. It encompasses all aspects of instructions such as planning of goal oriented learning activities, adopting appropriate strategies for curriculum transaction, gaining feedback leading to knowledge of results, diagnosing deficiencies, monitoring, adopting remedial measures for better results etc. This is why evaluation has to be conceived as an integral part of the instructional process. While analyzing the concept of evaluation, it was pointed out that as part of the instructional process, a teacher will have to go on making value judgement about the quality of learning in terms of pupil performance. The need for a teacher to gain a thorough insight into the nature and scope of each of these goals was also highlighted in the view of its crucial role in making evaluation scientific and reliable.
The comprehensive system of educational evaluation helps in maximizing the output of education which is being planned as a developmental endeavour. The very broad scope of educational evaluation goes much beyond the conduct of examination as usually conceived by most people. According to Donnie, the purpose of evaluation is to provide information for grading, evaluate the effectiveness of teaching methods, and motivate the students, evaluating the entire program of an educational institution, collecting information for effective education, vocation, counseling and guidance. In broader sense, the significance of evaluation can be divided into learning level, teaching level, guidance and counselling level, curriculum development level, school administration level and classroom research level.
Functions of Evaluation
Functions of educational evaluation may be divided into two major categories.
1. Functions associated with the instructional process which involves both learning and teaching.
2. Functions associated with the educational system as a whole.
To make education a developmental endeavour, it should satisfy three aspects.
They are totality (comprehensiveness), sustainability and transferability. The functions of educational evaluation are Measurement function, Diagnostic function, Guidance and remediation, Motivating function, Assessment of final output, Classification and placement function, Prognosis, Prediction and Selection function and Setting up of norms. Improvement of input and maximization of output are the functions related to the whole educational system.
Types of Evaluation
Since evaluation has many functions, there are different types of evaluation. They are helpful because they add specificity to the goals and plan of action. They are
¨ Norm referenced evaluation
¨ Criterion referenced evaluation
¨ Formative evaluation
¨ Summative evaluation
¨ Scholastic evaluation
¨ Co-scholastic evaluation
¨ Competency-based and objective-based evaluation
¨ Continuous and comprehensive evaluation
Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation
The diversity of functions and the variety in the types and models of educational evaluation highlights the limitations of existing examination procedures followed for evaluating pupil performance as well as other related phenomenon. This also points the urgent need for a new perspective about a more effective strategy for evaluating all aspects of the educational system, especially evaluation of the performance of pupils who are educated for development. This is the reason why the Program of Action of the National Policy of Education stresses the need for building up a system of ‘Continuous and Comprehensive’ evaluation. Implementing formative evaluation at every stage using a variety of techniques ranging from observation to testing with the help of appropriate tools designed for accurate measurement is the first operational requirement of such a system. The educational values of such continuous evaluation and the functions served by it in achieving development are great. Equally important is the need for making evaluation comprehensive. Instead of limiting summative evaluation to a written examination asking for knowledge of information, all the components of the expected output by way of changes in various domains of human activity will have to be assessed all along and the cumulative result of this exercise has to be taken as the measure for ascertaining the level of pupil performance.
In short, continuous and comprehensive evaluation alone can ensure that education succeeds in fulfilling its ultimate aim, namely, promoting the ‘total development’ of the individual and the nation alike.
The first Indian University Commission, 1902 had expressed long ago in very strong language its disapproval of the examination system prevalent at that time, in view of its harmful consequences. The Commission pointed out “…the greatest evil from which the system of university education in India suffers is that teaching is subordinated to examinations and not examination to teaching”. The first University Education Commission appointed in free India, 1948-49 also pointed out that “…if we are to suggest a single reform in University Education, it should be that of the examinations”. The Secondary Education Commission, 1952-53 and later the Kothari Commission, 1964-66 also has stated in very emphatic terms the urgency for implementing examination reforms.
Along with these severe criticisms, proposals for implementation were also made. These in general were meant for organizing an examination system that centered round different aspects of education, which included (i) Introduction of semester systems (ii) Internal assessment (iii) Implementing grading system (iv) De-linking degrees from jobs (v) Development of question banks (vi) Monitoring examination reforms and (vii) Establishment of evaluation units. Many attempts were made by the UGC to implement some of these suggestions at the University level during the period between 1951 and 1961. In spite of these attempts, many proposed reforms could not work mainly due to the absence of a statutory body with authority and responsibility for implementing plans of actions. In 1969, the Commission appointed a committee for Examination Reforms in Central Universities. This Committee recommended certain ‘innovative’ programs such as ‘credit system’ and ‘semester system’ and released booklets on these. Four areas were highlighted on the basis of the recommendations made by various commissions and committees. These were (i) Continuous ‘Internal Evaluation’ as a supplement to the existing final examination (ii) Development of ‘Question Banks’ in order to eliminate some of the short comings of the setting of question papers (iii) Introduction of the ‘Grading System’ in the place of the existing marking system (iv) Introduction of the ‘Semester System’.
The evaluation has to be comprehensive with respect to the learning material learnt and developmental course anticipated. Developmental education warrants ‘totality’, ‘sustainability’ and ‘transferability’ of development. Totality warrants development in all areas of human behaviour and related competencies which include cognitive (intellectual) changes, affective (emotional) changes and psycho-motor changes. Education aims at the upbringing of a balanced personality through the development of all three domains. Backwardness in any of these will be reflected in the individual in one way or the other. The trend in the system of examination had been just the assessment of cognitive abilities of the child on the erroneous belief that if cognition is there, affective and psycho-motor abilities must have developed automatically. Evidences are there to conclude that teaching for the development of cognitive aspects can adversely affect the affective behaviour and psycho-motor abilities of the child. Various methods, techniques and tools of evaluation can be made use of in collecting evidence on the students’ developments in all desirable directions. The problem lies in the fact that it is difficult to change and measure affective behaviour and also areas of psycho-motor development, the measurement of which demands much time and attention. Another difficulty is that behavioural objectives have not yet been stated clearly. Still, the classroom teacher can assess the outcomes directly and indirectly through certain techniques.
Internal assessment of all activities of the students is one method. It can be based on continuous appraisal of certain behaviours and activities. Class attendance, periodic tests, class-work, home work etc. can be different techniques for assessment of affective variables like punctuality, regularity, systematic work, responsibility etc. The development of social behaviour and values can be assessed by observing their participation in community service, help rendered to peers or co-operation in any type of activity. Personal and social adjustments shown by the child in real situation can be an indicator of his affective development. Self appraisal by the students is an indirect way to assess their nature – cooperation, self-worth, self-reliance, beliefs etc. Aptitude tests, interest inventories, attitude scale, tools which measure critical thinking ability etc. can be used. Sociometric techniques also can be applied.
Along with an academic profile of the students, a personal profile can also be kept by the teacher. Everyday events noticed about the child can be written. It can be about participation in school activities, initiatives taken, cheerfulness, self-control, behaviour towards his friends and elders, way of handling books and other equipments etc. Student portfolio is a record which tells the teacher about the child’s overall performance and talents in academic area, literature, sports, arts etc.
The psycho-motor development is to be corresponding to the stages of growth and the teacher can measure it by giving performance tests, practicals, speed and quality tests etc. The ability to effectively coordinate both the psychic and physical abilities becomes revealed in written expressions, oral expressions, in reading skill, activities which made creative thinking and practical problem solving situations. The play-way method can be adopted for this purpose.
Along with these tools and techniques, feedback from peer group, parents and the community will have much contribution in the area of non-cognitive development. Accurate and appropriate, object assessment will become easy for the classroom teacher if we succeed in formulating specifications for such behavioural changes.
The tools for Continuous Comprehensive Evaluation
The tools for Continuous Comprehensive Evaluation are
(iii) Practical (Oral testing)
(a) Reading aloud
(d) Mock interview
(e) Extempore speech
(iv) Collections of library items
(v) Research or creative work
(vi) Seminar or debate
(vii) Class tests
Portfolio is the minister’s record. A student’s portfolio is also the record of what he has done and achieved. It can be the record of a session, semester or year. It should reflect both the process and the product. Daily experiences worth noting can be written, reports of class or school events, personal feelings etc. can be included which will present an overview of what happened in the academic domain of the learner. It can be used as a tool for evaluation, but there will be subjectivity in scoring. A scoring key may be made use of based on certain essential criteria.
A professional portfolio is an evolving collection of carefully selected or composed professional thoughts, goals and experiences that are threaded with reflection and self-assessment. It represents the who, what, why, where, how etc. of the professional. A student teacher’s portfolio is an evidence of the standard of performance and it serves as a source of review and reflection. It is a systematic, selective collection of student work to demonstrate his motivation, academic growth and level of achievement. When the collection includes the student’s own reflections of the work, it becomes a real representation of student learning.
The collection of materials in a portfolio can be grouped into five. They are evidences of
(i) Understanding of subject matter and current developments e.g. Qualifications, courses undergone, comments on the course curriculum; review of a few books, essays or methodology followed, observation report of a colleague.
(ii) Skills and competencies in teaching e.g. lesson plan, self-evaluation report, examples of student work, video recording of class, report by supervisor, a few teaching materials, notes of appreciation from past students
(iii) Approach to classroom management and organization e.g. a brief description of philosophy of classroom management, observation report of a peer, written comments by a supervisor, students’ account of effectiveness of classroom management
(iv) Commitment to professional development. e.g. a professional development plan, observation report of the peers, details of classroom research, related courses undergone, membership in professional organizations, report of articles.
(v) Information concerning relationship with colleagues. e.g. details of assistance given to peers, report of friendly relation with peers and institution, help provided to peers for their professional development.
(b)Organization of contents
Philosophy of teaching
Explanation of artifacts
Comments/review on artifacts
Commentary/ review of the meaning of the portfolio
Types of portfolio
Types of portfolio are
(a) Product portfolio or Show care portfolio – content includes products that are students, best work which exhibits the range and quality of work
(b) Process or effort portfolio – drafts leading to completed products to show how works evolute.
(c) Progress or Working portfolio – for comparison of identical work, samples overtime are included to show student improvement.
The student teachers must be informed whether the number of items presented alone is important or that the contents and quality also will be taken into account at the time of assessment. Anyway, portfolio is complete with student work, student reflection on the work, assessment by teachers, parents, social members etc.
Jesa, M, “Contemporary English Teaching (Methodology and Pedagogy)”, K.M.K, Publications, Mayyanad, Kollam.
Sivarajan, K, “English Language Education”, Premier Offset Printers, Calicut, December 2007.
Vashist, S, R, “The Theory of Educational Evaluation”, Anmol Publications, New Delhi. 2004.
PREPARED BY ANITHA R.