Ed Tech

10 useful tools for assessment with tech

Technology gives students lots of options for demonstrating their learning via assessments. Here are 10 tools to empower them. (Flickr / Brad Flickinger)

Technology gives students lots of options for demonstrating their learning via assessments. Here are 10 tools to empower them. (Flickr / Brad Flickinger)

We’re down to the final days of the school year at my school, and many students and teachers have turned their thoughts to assessment.

Final exams. Final projects. End-of-course assessments. Quick review sessions.

Plenty of options exist to gauge student understanding by using tech tools. The assessment process can be engaging for students and more efficient for teachers with a few handy sites in hand.

Here are 10 tools you can start using tomorrow to assess student learning:

1. The Answer Pad I was so sad when Infuse Learning (an online student response system) shut down because it allowed students to draw an answer and submit it from their own devices. The Answer Pad’s recent version 2.0 makes this fun assessment option available again. From a teacher account, click “Interactive” and choose “Quick Connect.” Students receive a quick connect code they can enter in their web browsers or The Answer Pad app to connect to this quick assessment session. Once students are in, teachers can send out a draw your answer-type question. It’s a fun twist on assessment for more visual students.

goconqr2. GoConqr mind map Mind maps are nothing new, but GoConqr (formerly ExamTime) makes them easy and beautiful. Quickly add connected bubbles and format color, text and more to help students get ideas organized and show what they’ve learned.

3. Canva I’ve used Canva to create graphics for social media. The company has stepped its game up recently by adding the option to create infographics. As interest in infographics continues to grow in visual mediums like Pinterest, their relevance in the educational world could rival the outdated research paper.

4. Paper FiftyThree’s drawing app for the iPad is a favorite of mine, and some recent changes make it even more so. Some of Paper’s tools, like the watercolor paintbrush and fine-point marker, were once paid premium features, but now all of Paper’s tools are free. Plus, FiftyThree has released Think Kit, a powerful new set of tools to help sketchers take their work to the next level. New options include smart shapes, the ability to draw straight lines and color fill. Creating a sketchnote or adding visual elements to notes gives flexibility to students in ways to show their understanding.

youtube upload5. YouTube’s upload button YouTube is not just for recording video on a separate device and uploading it on your computer! The upload button on a web browser enables users to add video to YouTube with a webcam, by using photos, through a Hangout on Air broadcast, or by mashing other videos together with its video editor. Each opens up lots of options for showing understanding. YouTube’s mobile apps make creating and uploading quick videos very simple. By sharing videos, students’ assessments become an opportunity to teach the world.

6. AudioBoom This tool lets students record audio from virtually any device easily. With its publishing capabilities, it can give them a global audience and turn them into podcasters. Students who like to talk could find audio assessments more their style, and creative types can add drama and sound effects to spice up their productions.

7. Snagit for Google Chrome (app) (extension) — Screencast videos let students show what they’ve learned with their computer screens and their voices. TechSmith’s Snagit extension for Google Chrome lets students create videos and save them directly to YouTube or their Google Drive accounts. Screencasts are perfect for demonstrations of tasks or sources online to show student understanding. (Note: You’ll need both the app and the extension to make Snagit work in Chrome.)

8. Kahoot! This tool turns quick formative assessment into a game show, but it goes deeper than quick question and answer. Kahoot! can save student responses in a downloadable spreadsheet, giving teachers the ability to review low-scoring questions and student performance. Students can also create their own Kahoot! games, creating believable incorrect answers and quality questions, to show what they’ve learned.

9. Voxer Teachers have been turning to Voxer for walkie-talkie-style professional learning and sharing. Students can utilize it, too. Voxer’s voice, text and picture messages are saved and can be accessed later. After a student group conversation on Voxer, the best take-away messages can be gathered (or curated) in one place to show understanding.

10. Flubaroo This add-on to use with Google Forms and Google Sheets will auto-grade simple formative assessments. Create a quiz in Google Forms, and student data is compiled in a Google Sheet. Flubaroo grades those student responses almost instantly, providing teachers with a powerful grading report. Flubaroo makes your life easiest when questions are multiple-choice, true-false or matching. Need to ask open-ended questions? When you ask Flubaroo to grade, just have Flubaroo skip the open-ended questions and grade them yourself in the spreadsheet.

[reminder]What other tech tools can be used to assess students?[/reminder]

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