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AAPT Presentations 1

Assessment Practices For Accessibility, Rigor, and Sustainability: You Can Have All Three


A presentation from the 2019 Summer Meeting: Provo, UT


Is it possible increase rigor, authentic assessment, and accessibility at the same time? How can we support students' widely varying learning needs in ways that are sustainable for faculty? What assessment practices make success more possible for members of marginalized groups (including students who are one or more of Indigenous, Black, people of color, women, queer, trans, disabled/having disabilities, etc.) while contributing to a healthier climate for all students? How do we help students develop the confidence that they can take control of their own learning and improvement? Will my students ever complete the assigned readings before class, and if they do, how do I prevent them from memorizing it as compartmentalized nonsense? I've been experimenting for 8 years with answering these questions, using a combination of Standards-Based Grading, format-independent rubrics, student-developed assessment, student-developed curriculum, Elder/Paul model critical thinking, Universal Design for Learning, peer review, and some basic techniques of conflict mediation. Come try these techniques first-hand using examples from an algebra-based circuits course. We will discuss the techniques' pros and cons, and explore underlying conditions that make them work, including "question generating exercises", a "curiosity tracking" spreadsheet, and the surprising role of definitions in students' understanding of causality. You will leave with a package of classroom-ready resources, including at least one that you have modified to suit your curriculum.


Mylène DiPenta

Paper Type:

2019 Summer Meeting: Provo, UT

08:30 AM

Assessment Strategies, Especially for Upper-division Physics


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