There are a variety of measurement tools used to assess learning. The instruments can be used by individual participants, in a group setting or implemented on global scale. The most common assessment tools used to measure student performance within the College of Medicine - Phoenix curriculum are rubrics, checklists and surveys.

Rubrics

Rubrics are used to identify levels performance of a specific task. Each level of a rubric is defined by specific indicators of the overall performance. For each indicator, a description outlines the mastery criteria needed to achieve the correlative level of success. Instructors use rubrics to define the quality of performance withi the area being rated. Raters use headings to name the level of accomplishment, e.g. “marginal”, “satisfactory” and exemplary”.

Rubrics can be used as both formative and summative measures of performance. They are often used as a development assessment tool for tracking change or improvement over time. In articulating the same target goals for improvement for everyone being assessed, rubrics provide a framework of consistency in measuring progress by illustrating a common set of definitions across all outcomes.

The most common types of rubrics are analytic and holistic. An analytic rubric is used to assess components of a finished product comprising of multiple elements. This type of rubric targets more than one content area, but contains levels of performance.

  Beginning
1
Developing
2
Accomplished
3
Exemplary
4
Criteria #1 Description reflecting beginning level of performance. Description reflecting movement toward mastery level of performance. Description reflecting achievement of mastery level of performance. Description reflecting highest level of performance.
Criteria #2 Description reflecting beginning level of performance. Description reflecting movement toward mastery level of performance. Description reflecting achievement of mastery level of performance. Description reflecting highest level of performance.

Sample Analytic Rubrics

Conversely, a holistic rubric targets a single area and is used to asses an entire work as a whole product considering multiple factors in each level.

Level Description
5 Demonstrates complete understanding of the problem. All requirements of task are included in the response.
4 Demonstrates considerable understanding of the problem. All requirements of task are included in the response.
3 Demonstrates partial understanding of the problem. Most requirements of task are included in the response.
2 Demonstrates little understanding of the problem. Many requirements of task are missing from the response.
1 Demonstrates no understanding of the problem.
0 No response/task not attempted.

Sample Holistic Rubrics

Checklists

Checklists are also used to assess learner performance. However, they are designed to align with the completion of prescribed tasks. Less informative than rubrics, checklists identify the criteria needed for completion, but not the mastery level of achievement. Checklists are often used to provide a series of requirements needed to complete or demonstrate a given task. They can be utilized in a formative manner to assess progression of stepwise approaches over time, or as a summative means of a collection of various learning achievements in a portfolio-type of assembly.

Sample Checklists

Surveys

Surveys are used to gather information from participants about their attitudes, beliefs, perceptions, and behaviors. Surveys use headings to label a scale of responses. Surveys target specified samplings of populations to answer a series of question. A questionnaire often frames the implementation of a survey to gather information about participant responses. Once responses are obtained, analysis of the data provides insight into the sampled populous. After a survey is piloted, feedback received regarding its implementation, revisions can be conducted to better the instrument prior to the formal launch to its intended global audience.

There are two distinct types of surveys, numeric and descriptive. Numeric surveys use increasing/decreasing numbers to rank a level of agreement or satisfaction. Descriptive surveys use definitions or phrases to describe a differentiated characteristic of a given interpretation

Survey Examples

  • Numeric Survey: "1=Strongly Disagree", and "5=Strongly Agree".
  • Descriptive Survey: "Satisfactory = Successful completion of all assigned tasks".

Sample Surveys