Yesterday, I read a few posts from physics professor Joss Ives at his blog, Science Learnification. One of the posts that really got me thinking was about weekly two-stage quizzes in his physics classes.
A two-stage group exam is form of assessment where students learn as part of the assessment. The idea is that the students write an exam individually, hand in their individual exams, and then re-write the same or similar exam in groups, where learning, volume and even fun are all had.
I really like the idea of having students take a quiz individually, then take it again immediately afterward in a group. I’m going to give this a try next time a give a quiz. If nothing else, instant feedback mixed with collaborative problem solving is a powerful combination.
What I’m trying to wrap my brain around right now is how to work this in with standards-based grading.
Since I don’t give points, I can’t do the 75% individual score + 25% group score = quiz grade split that Joss uses. If I could sit with all groups at once, I could observe and listen for individual involvement in the discussion & problem solving.
It may be that we could just do the group quiz portion as a learning experience and leave it at that. Since my students are always allowed to re-assess, there is value in learning after the assessment.
What I think would be lacking for me is the level of engagement that Joss reports in the group problem solving portion of the quiz. His kids are engaged in no small part because everyone’s grade is on the line. I’m not sure where the immediate motivation would be for many of my students.