Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The language and vocabulary of effective evaluation

The key to a successful evaluation depends upon the language that you invoke, and in turn the emotions that those words generate.  One does not have to be a literary giant or an English professor to have the right words.  Rather it is the way the words are strung together and the process used to ensure there are sharp outcomes.

So the words are not providing an answer but rather provide prompts and pricks that stimulate the mind to more deeply consider and reflect upon the matter or subject at hand.

Words that are used include - robust, well defined, appropriate, genuine,implement, critical, credible, accurate, valid, evidence, outcomes, analysis, authentic, confidence, thinking, reflection, relevant, practical, foundations.

"The self assessment is not an exercise in good writing. Rather, it is an opportunity for an employee to describe major contributions and how the work meets or exceeds the supervisor’s performance expectations." (Source: http://www.cpms.osd.mil/nsps/docs/selfassessmentfactsheet.pdf)

As far as we in education go the language focuses on the outcomes and successes of the learners.  The great thing about evaluation in education is that it allows educators to be assessed against hard data but also against the intangible outcomes and rewards that learners gain,

I certainly do not profess to be any sort of expert in this field of thinking as I have only just discovered the beauty of it.  I do however want to share my reflections on what I have learnt so far and so share my musings with you here.

For more information about evaluations I recommend you check out Jara Dean Coffey's website and blog.

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