There is a general process towards an understanding of knowledge not as a question of remembering facts but to achieve the skill to use what is learnt under different circumstances. According to this, knowledge should be useful at different occasions also outside school. This process may also be identified in the development of new tests performed in order to assess knowledge.
In courses in biology, chemistry and physics focused on didactics we have developed performance assessments aimed at assessing the understanding of general scientific principles by simple practical investigations. Although, designed to assess whether specific goals are attained, we discovered how small alterations of performance assessments promoted the development of didactic skills. Performance assessments may act as tools for the academic teacher, school teacher and enhancement of student understanding of the theory.
This workshop is focused on performance assessments of the ability to present skills and to develop new ideas. We will present, explain and familiarize a practical approach to performance assessments in science education. The emphasis is to demonstrate and to give possibility and experience of this assessment tool.
We will perform elaborative tasks as they may be used by teachers working at different levels, assess the performance and evaluate the learning outcome of the activity. Different types of assessment matrixes will be presented and tested at the workshop. Learning by doing will fill the major part of the workshop but there will also be opportunities for discussion, sharing ideas and suggestions for further development
The activities performed may be seen as models possible for further development into new assessments.