ERIC Number: ED391059
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Dec
Reference Count: N/A
Using Assessment Information in Educational Decision Making: A Study of Ohio Vocational Teachers' Assessment Practices.
Kershaw, Isaac; McCaslin, N. L.
A study was conducted to describe Ohio secondary vocational education teachers' use of student assessment information in making instructional decisions. The target population for the study was all teachers who taught in secondary vocational education programs in Ohio public schools. A questionnaire was mailed to a random sample of 393 secondary vocational education teachers stratified by program area; 290 usable questionnaires (74 percent response rate) were received. The questionnaire asked teachers to indicate the extent to which they use information derived from 6 types of assessment methods in addressing 10 different instructional decisions. The six types of assessment methods were as follows: objective paper and pencil items; informal observations; standardized test scores; performance assessments; portfolios; and essay type items. The 10 decision areas in which assessment results are commonly used were the following: plan for instruction; diagnose student weakness; monitor student progress; communicate achievement; motivate students; evaluate instruction; evaluate instructional materials; group students; encourage self-assessment; and assign grades. Teachers rated information provided from performance assessments as being of more use in addressing day-to-day classroom decisions than information obtained from the other five assessment methods. Teachers also relied heavily on objective paper and pencil methods and informal observations. Recommendations included the following: (1) because teachers often use performance assessments, teacher preservice education curriculum should pay particular attention to the development of competence in the use of performance assessments; (2) the Ohio Department of Education should encourage teachers to use standardized test results; (3) further research should be conducted in the area of the use of portfolios in assessment; and (4) further research should be conducted on vocational education teachers' attitudes toward standardized testing and the use of authentic assessment methods. (Contains 18 references.) (KC)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the American Vocational Association Convention (Denver, CO, December 1995).