Curriculum and Assessment as Powerful Tools to Improve Learning Outcomes

June 6, 2017 mindsharelearning

It’s that time of year…the final month before summer vacation! And that means crunch time – exams, final assessments, assignments, and reflecting on the past year to ensure continuous improvement for those to come. With this comes a heavy spotlight on curriculum and assessment – two very hot topics in education today. So what is it you want to achieve around curriculum and assessment for your school system?

As always, we must begin by asking ourselves, what does success look like and how do we get there? School leaders and teachers take an active role in this reflection, by standing as the visionaries to ensure a better future for their students and school communities.

There are so many opinions, perspectives, and options nowadays when it comes to assessment. So how do you choose? It’s about what’s right for your school and your system – each and every one is different!
A few things we know across the board is that content, curriculum, and assessment must be student-centric, relevant, authentic, constructive, and interdisciplinary. Research has also shown that students in blended learning conditions exceed students in traditional classroom environments. No matter what changes you are looking to make, schools must always and continuously ensure their pedagogical beliefs are aligned to technological efforts, and it is through curriculum and assessment that this can be achieved.

It is important to also remember that students often learn from failing, making assessment a powerful learning tool when used as part of the curriculum, versus as the final grading outcome. In this way, students can see where they are heading on their learning journey and where they started. It is a way to gauge improvement and learn from mistakes, while personalizing the students’ learning experiences.
So where does technology come into play?

When it comes to curriculum, how can we use technology to boost the outcomes? Simply implementing technology does not mean we’ve achieved our goal. It is through the responsive and creative use and implementation of technology (often stemming from the right professional development) that we can find positive ways to improve curriculum and assessment tools for our students. For this to happen, leaders need to also ensure that their learners are connected, learning is personalized, there is support for student collaboration, and that there is room for reflection. Furthermore, to ensure learning is personalized, it is important that there are alternative assessments available, or we can easily fall into the one-size-fits-all learning trap. Assessment is so much more than just a process of learning – it is a process for learning.

All in all, we know it’s tough to make decisions when there are so many options available for curriculum and assessment. Don’t worry – we’ve got the resources to help support and guide this decision-making process and tools such as our Office 365 collaboration suite.

Ready to transform your curriculum and methods of assessment? Check out some of our additional resources to support your journey:
Additional Resources
Curriculum and assessment | What does success look like and how do you get there?
Curriculum, Content, and Assessment for the Real World


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