A Learning Management System or LMS is used to assist students in making the most of their education. Accurate student performance assessment is an extremely important component to the system in order to remove some of the trepidation associated with second year medical studies. As such, the Histology assessment was started and a bonus structure introduced.
The student, the institution and society all affect the performance criteria. Evaluating the student’s learning strategies, the institution’s quality and societal concerns such as employment requirements all go into determining whether or not the assessment should be considered as a force to determine the learning process.
Assessment is a necessary and unavoidable element to a Learning Management System but it is important to understand how the method and frequency of assessment is liable to affect the quality of learning in the student. If assessment is comprised primarily of multiple choice questions and rote recitation of facts, deep learning can be adversely affected resulting in surface learning only. Likewise, if assessments are used too frequently without a proper absorption of the learned material the same occurs.
Neither scenario will assist the student’s learning process. Therefore it is imperative to evaluate the process of assessment to ensure it is valuable to the student’s advancement. It is necessary to ensure assessment is a positive addition to the curriculum as opposed to a detriment.
Proper assessment though is valuable in a Learning Management System and can be a highly positive aspect of the curriculum. Studies can become less mundane by equating what is being learned more fully with the student’s typical activities. This often results in a more favourable outlook to school and learning. It puts the focus on the student.
Teachers are involved to a greater degree in the assessment process than in some more traditional approaches to assessment. This allows them to garner information valuable to them on the development of the student. It gives them data in whether or not the goals of the course are being met and ultimately if the curriculum is successful.
Individual assessments and actual results drive the Learning Management System as opposed to estimated group tests. This provides a more accurate individual curriculum for the student. It can be customized to maximize results suited for the learning methods of the student for a more positive learning process.
Changes in the methods of assessment are influenced by advances in education that dictate how students are best taught. The methods of teaching change to maximize results and the methods of assessment change with it.
Teachers are embracing the changes in education and assessment as they continue to see improved results. However, simply because these changes are proving effective does not mean existing processes should be discarded entirely either. The changes in the Learning Management System are not entirely new; they are instead refinements to existing processes. Although there are many indications these changes are conducive to a better learning environment, they should not exclude traditional methods entirely.
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