Open Google Test

This is a neat idea — because if you make assessment authentic, courses have to change, of necessity:

In Denmark, the government has taken the bold step of allowing pupils full access to the internet during their final school year exams.
A total of 14 colleges in Denmark are piloting the new system of exams and all schools in the country have been invited to join the scheme by 2011.

I’d be interested to know (and may research) how the practice of open book tests transforms pedagogical practice (and student focus) in those classrooms that adopt it. I would guess that we are looking at something similar here.

WordPress MU and eportfolio reporting requirements

I had the good luck this week to stumble into a very helpful blogswarm. And since it’s best to make use of their expertise while they are still checking back here, let’s cut to the chase.

Here is the new thought, re: eportfolios and other WP projects needing data aggregation.

Append an optional process at the end of WordPress MU setup that pre-populates the category table with canonical terms.

So, for instance, the table could be pre-filled with specific performance indicators appropriate to educational eportfolios, organized around a standardized phrase, such as “Demonstration of Classroom Management Skills (NC 2.1.3)”. You upload the artifact and you or someone bigger than you tags it.

Now here’s the neat part. Since we have faith these terms are the same across MU instances, reports are simply a matter of writing code that cycles through all the MU user tables and finds posts that are tagged with that term. Want a report of all users who have not met requirement NC 2.1.3? Easy.

Caveat: the people here with an intimate knowledge NCATE are still drawing up what the reporting requirements will look like. But then, there’s very little one can’t do with tagging and SQL. So I’m not worried yet.

So question…. does this make sense? Is anyone else using WP tagging in this way? Does anyone have NCATE reporting experience, and what can you tell me?

(Bill, I will eventually look into your neat hack in Drupal as well…]