Using Alternative Assessments in Vocational Education

by Brian M. Stecher, Mikala Rahn, Allen Ruby, Martha Alt, Abby Robyn, Brian Ward

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Abstract

This volume covers a study of the utility of alternative (i.e., non-multiple choice) forms of student assessment for vocational education, the primary objective of which was to describe various alternative assessments currently available and offer criteria for choosing among them. Six operational programs were used as case studies; each employs one or more constructed-response measures, and together they represent a range of assessment options. Each was critically reviewed based on descriptive materials, research literature, interviews, and, in four cases, site visits. The evaluation focused on comparing the different assessments' quality (reliability, validity, fairness), feasibility (cost, time, complexity, credibility), and potential usefulness for vocational educators. Design and implementation issues important to any decisions about using alternative assessments were determined (e.g., the need to clarify the assessment's purpose), as well as related issues (e.g., the relative advantages of low versus high stakes, voluntary versus mandatory participation). Illustrations are given of how vocational educators can use this review as an aid in determining the usefulness of the alternatives for a particular situation.

Table of Contents

  • Preface PDF

  • Figures PDF

  • Tables PDF

  • Summary PDF

  • Acknowledgements

    Acknowledgments PDF

  • Chapter One

    Introduction PDF

  • Chapter Two

    The Assessment Challenge Facing Vocational Education PDF

  • Chapter Three

    Types of Assessment PDF

  • Chapter Four

    Criteria for Comparing Assessments: Quality and Feasibility PDF

  • Chapter Five

    Other Issues in Assessment Planning PDF

  • Chapter Six

    Discussion PDF

  • Appendix A

    Career-Technical Assessment Program PDF

  • Appendix B

    Kentucky Instructional Results Information System (KIRIS) PDF

  • Appendix C

    Laborers-AGC Environmental Training and Certification Programs PDF

  • Appendix D

    National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Certification Program PDF

  • Appendix E

    Oklahoma Department of Vocational-Technical Education Competency-Based Testing Program PDF

  • Appendix F

    Vocational/Industrial Clubs of America National Competition PDF

  • References PDF

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