University of Massachusetts Leadership Awards Showcase Student Assessment Best Practices

University of Massachusetts Leadership Awards Showcase Student Assessment Best Practices

SHREWSBURY, MA. - September 23, 2005 - Five outstanding faculty leaders were recognized for their cutting edge work using technology to assess student learning at the Teaching and Learning with Electronic Portfolios Symposium. The Symposium was sponsored by The University of Massachusetts President's Office of Academic Affairs, UMassOnline, and the Information Technology Council's Subcommittee on Academic Technology.

The University of Massachusetts Leadership Award for Assessment of Student Leaning with Technology, highlights a system-wide commitment to advancing best practices in student learning and outcomes. "Today's awardees have demonstrated their keen understanding of two principles," stated Marcellette Williams, Senior Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs and International Relations. "First, that a successful union of technology and pedagogy enhances quality teaching by enabling students to become more readily independent learners and more effective critics of their own learning; and second, that such a union also enables excellent teaching by demonstrating the inherent reciprocity of quality teaching and dynamic learning."

Awards were given to faculty who demonstrated effective strategies for using technology in the following areas: innovative tools for the assessment of student learning; formative evaluations that facilitate student learning, such as e-portfolios, self-assessments, and practice tests; fostering and measuring improvement in student learning; providing students and faculty with prompt and meaningful feedback; engagement of students in their own learning by encouraging student self-assessment.

"I think this award offers faculty who are taking risks in new instructional areas such as technology, affirmation of the importance of their efforts to the UMass system," states Award recipient Dr. Judith Davidson. "That's very important when you are undertaking non-traditional work." Fellow award recipient, Dr. Riley, agrees, "It's great to a receive recognition for assessment of student learning in the online environment. The UMass Dartmouth Women's Studies Program online minor has been steadily growing over the past three years, and to receive public recognition of the attention that I center on student learning and success is very rewarding."

Date: 09/23/05