>I received NCTM's Assessment Standards yesterday. The first example >stressedreal world problem solving. (As the other two Standards) > >Must every mathematics teacher create their own set of problems? Or, can >aDataBase be setup (online) for depositing and withdrawing real-life >problemsfor instructonal purposes?
With the introduction of Student Performance Standards in year 8, and three new syllabuses in years 11 and 12, there is also a push for alternative assessment in Australia.
We have asked the same question - how does a teacher or a school efficiently develop a bank of quality assessment items? To this end, I have recently applied for some funding to establish a mathematics assessment WWW site. If approved, I would start the project in August. This year would be devoted to establishing the Web site and trialling the system with a relatively small number of assessment items. If successful the push next year would be to expand the database to a useful size.
There are a number of issues that need to be addressed. Since school-based assessment in Queensland is the main factor in selecting students for university courses, the accessibility of the system by students is one concern that has been raised. Also, since teachers are great at borrowing ideas from other sources, the problem of copyright needs to be addressed. Many of my good assessment items are things that I have found elsewhere and then re-worked. Where do I stand legally if I then publish these on the Web?
Another issue is the cost of creating and maintaining the database. I will be doing this part-time this year, but to be truely effective, the project would need a full time coordinator as well as administrative assistance (eg word processing).
Nonetheless, I feel that an on-line assessment database is a worthy idea, and that these issues can be resolved. I would welcome discussion on this issue, as I may be devoting a goodly part of my life to the concept for the next few years.
As an aside, I searched the Web for any similar projects that already exist, as I don't feel like duplicating work that has already been done. I was unable to find anything. Does anyone know of any similar projects that are currently in existence?
Finally, if the funding is approved, is there anyone out there in MathSpace that is interested in becoming involved?
Rex *** Rex Boggs | High above the hushed crowd, firstname.lastname@example.org | Rex tried to remain focused. | Still, he couldn't shake one Glenmore High School | nagging thought: He was an Rockhampton, Quensland | old dog and this was a new Australia | trick - Gary Larson