Reflection: Unit Exams Assessing the Early American & Revolutionary Texts - Section 3: Building Knowledge

 

Overall, today went very well, but I was definitely shocked to see how long it was taking students to finish their assessments.  Since they did have a very complete study guide and had heard several (about 20 or so) questions before the actual test, I never dreamed that it would take students nearly 80 minutes to complete their exam.  I actually had a small handful of students who had to pause the essay section of the test and come back to finish it after school.  I'm not sure if it was just because they wanted to make sure they did really well on the test or if they really had no idea on the information, but I was certainly surprised.  I made such a point of mentioning the importance of time management before beginning the test, but I still had students spend the first 40 minutes on the essay section, then race through the objective portion of the test.  That was definitely disheartening.  Next time I would set the test sections so that they do not start simultaneously so that students would basically be forced into beginning with the multiple choice section.  

Another thing that surprised me was how little students really studied for the test, though most said in the reflection that they would have studied much more.  I saw the dreaded "looked over my notes and the stories" on about 50 student responses, which is generally a poor indicator of studying.  I will definitely have to make a point of modeling proper study techniques for students.  I'm not sure when the change happened that students stopped taking practice tests or creating their own assessments, but students are definitely falling behind who are not actively engaging with the process of studying, especially when the average time spent studying amounted to 30-45 minutes.  Overall, the average objective test score did end up being an 80%, which is is about average.  I did have a few students ace their test, which was great!  Overall, this was a success.  I just have to tweak a few things with the test preparation next time.

  Timing Issues with Exam
  Unit Exams: Timing Issues with Exam
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Assessing the Early American & Revolutionary Texts

Unit 2: A Revolutionary Introduction to Argumentation & Rhetoric
Lesson 8 of 8

Objective: SWBAT demonstrate a mastery of the content information and apply the reading skills covered so far in this unit on a multiple choice and essay-based assessment.

Big Idea: An exam that incorporates multiple choice and essay formats, requires reflection, and sets goals for the future? Wowza!

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