New eCourse on assessing student learning with instructional technologies focus

For Immediate Release
Tue, 04/21/2015


Liz Steiner

Marketing Manager

ALA Publishing

CHICAGO — ALA Editions announces a new eCourse, Assessing Student Learning with Instructional Technologies, facilitated by Melissa Mallon. This four-week asynchronous eCourse starts Monday, June 1, 2015.

Are you prepared to deliver student learning data to your administrators? When you design your learning plans with assessment in mind, you will be ready to do just that. Course instructor Melissa Mallon will guide you through the steps of designing an authentic lesson and assessment plan.

First you will have the option to choose either a lesson or activity that you teach regularly, such as critically evaluating sources, or use the example provided in the eCourse. Next, Mallon will introduce you to instructional technologies that will enable you to see what your students have learned. You will then be able to try these out and discover which technology will work best with your students. When you have completed this eCourse, you will have a ready-to-use lesson that uses instructional technology and an assessment plan to go with it!

After participating in this course, you will:

  • describe the characteristics of authentic assessment in order to successfully measure students’ information literacy skills;
  • determine the usefulness of different instructional technologies for evaluating student learning;
  • compare the effectiveness of these technologies with various student populations;
  • develop strategies for engaging students and boosting participation levels in library instruction sessions.

eCourse outline

Week 1

  • Introduction
  • Overview of authentic assessment
  • Overview of lesson planning
  • Writing student learning outcomes that require demonstration of learning
  • Introduce instructional technologies that can facilitate assessment: social media (Twitter, blogs); polling & survey tools (Poll Everywhere, Google Forms, SurveyMonkey); collaboration (Padlet, Google Docs); multimedia (Audacity, iMovie, HaikuDeck); brainstorming & synthesis (concept maps, infographics (, Wordle).
  • Assignments
    • Choose a class/workshop/instructional scenario for completing a lesson and assessment plan. Write a draft of learning outcomes for the scenario
    • Sign up for instructional tech tool(s) to evaluate

Week 2

  • What makes an assignment/activity authentic? Discussion of formative and summative assessment techniques
  • Application to information literacy instruction and different class situations
  • Discuss use of rubrics to aid in assessing student learning
  • Assignments
    • Review draft of learning outcomes for scenario. Start developing ideas for authentic assessment activity (use Popplet, concept mapping tool)
    • Continue review of instructional technologies

Week 3

  • Continue discussion of authentically assessing information literacy and higher-order skills, such as critical thinking, synthesis, and analysis of information
  • Look at sample learning scenarios and match appropriate assessment techniques and technologies
  • Discuss methods for engaging students in the learning process
  • Assignments
    • Analyze instructional technologies
    • Determine authentic tasks for scenario and identify appropriate instructional technology tools (use Padlet, virtual white board, for discussion)
    • Complete review/evaluation of instructional technologies (post podcast or video reviews and tech tool evaluation form)

Week 4

  • Discuss methods for reflecting on assessment data in order to influence future teaching practices (i.e. what to do with the data once you’ve gathered it)
  • Share strategies for engaging faculty members/educators in discussion of student learning
  • Assignments
    • Completion of lesson and assessment plan
    • Post & comment on instructional technologies reviews

About the Instructor

Melissa Mallon is director of Peabody Education Library/director of instruction and liaison services at Vanderbilt University. Mallon’s research interests include online learning, instructional design and creative use of emerging technologies and social media in assessing student learning. She has presented on these topics at multiple forums, including ACRL and LOEX. development and advocacy.

Registration for this ALA Editions eCourse, which begins on June 1, 2015, can be purchased at the ALA Store. Participants in this course will need regular access to a computer with an Internet connection for online message board participation, viewing online video, listening to streaming audio (MP3 files), and downloading and viewing PDF and PowerPoint files.

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