The Survey and Results
The teachers in my focus group are all members of the SLAM Academy for Multimedia. These teachers I presumed would be more tech savvy than average, and therefore would already be using, or would be more open to adoption of Online Assessment tools. Several of these teachers I also know personally, and therefore it was easier to make contact, as I am not associated with the school. There are currently 5 faculty members in SLAM.
Since it is a Multimedia Academy, I assumed the all would be in the early adopter/ innovator category. I found out there was more diversity among the small group than I expected. From the results, Tony Farley, the Computer Science Teacher led as an early adopter, followed by Cheryl Farley Who Teaches English. John Sheridan, who teaches film production/art and Jill Synnot who teaches Senior English came in as Early Majority and Sean Tobin the Social Studies Teacher came in as a Late Majority adopter, bordering on Laggard Level.
According to the survey results, 4 out of 5 teachers were “very interested” and above in implementing some level of online assessment, where 1 was willing to listen but had doubts especially in term of fairness and efficacy. All teacher surveyed had Google accounts, though only the two English teachers actively used Google Docs in class. 4 out of 5 had heard of Google forms, though none had used it for online assessment. Only one had heard of Flubaroo.
As far as access to technology, all surveyed had access to either a classroom computer lab or either a laptop or Ipad Cart. All teachers used iOS, none using the windows platform. This presented a small challenge to me, as I am primarily a Windows user, and do not possess and iOS device. I have a friend, Dan Winer, who loaned me his iOS laptop for the week leading up to the PD.
With these results in mind I began to plan my PD. I had initially planned to spend on chunk of time introducing Google accounts, but that proved unnecessary. I decided to instead spend some time on the idea of using a classroom twitter account as a way to link to the forms. My presentation was to be a single two hour session, I decided, for continuity’s sake, this would be a better format than two spaced out 1-hour sessions. My format would be to pair up the teachers at a computer and have them follow along with my presentation while doing the steps on the computers. I also will seek to pair the Early Adopters with less skilled teachers.
The agenda was to be as follows:
- Introduction - 5 min
- The Pros and Cons of using Blended Learning Techniques in the Classroom - 15 min
- The Pros and Cons of Online Assessment In General and Google Forms Specifically -15min
- Setting up Your First Google Form - 25 min
- Break with Refreshments - 10 min
- Review/Finish Forms, Test Function - 10 min
- Getting Results - 10 min
- Using Flubaroo for Automatic Grading - 10 min
- Sharing Links to Quiz - Email? Web page? Twitter -10 min
- Evaluations and Questions, How to Contact Presenter -10 min
I want to make this presentation as authentic as possible. So the Powerpoint will be on Google Slides, and I will use it as we discuss blended learning and online assessment to fill in collaboratively. The participants will all be at their computers and will brainstorm discussion points, and put them on the document from their own computer. I will guide the discussion and help to make sure all points are covered. The the part of the presentation about using google forms will function around designing brief quiz using all of the forms elements. Google Forms underwent a major revision in 2015 to make it much easier to create and automatically grade quizzes. However, Flubaroo is still useful for advanced grading options such as partial credit and extra credit, and so will still be included.
I decided to do one two hour session which will be long, but not much more than an ordinary department meeting. I will provide snacks and coffee, because a great way to get people interested in attending is to give out free food! Placing the whole presentation in one piece will be better for continuity, but will not allow time for questions to develop between two sessions. Because of this I will prepare 2 evaluations. One will be administered immediately at the end of the session, and the other will be emailed to the participants one week after, which will allow me to field any questions at that time, and find out how implementation is going for individual teachers.