Monday, May 22, 2017

Mitchell Robinson: The “Brave New World” of Teacher Evaluation | Eclectablog

The “Brave New World” of Teacher Evaluation | Eclectablog:

The “Brave New World” of Teacher Evaluation

from: https://today.ucf.edu/deal-moves-teaching-simulator-developed-at-ucf-into-private-sector/

Just when you think the masters of the universe who run the corporate reform movement can’t be even more clueless, you catch wind of the newest effort to turn education into a profit-generating endeavor–this time, a hare-brained scheme to evaluate student teachers, by…and I swear I’m not making this up…observing them as they pretend to teach…wait for it…a fake “classroom” of avatars, in a virtual reality environment.
Avatars.

Avatars!

AVATARS!!!!!

Don’t believe it? Neither did I until I took a look at the new “National Observational Teaching Exam,” or NOTE, brought to you by the Educational Testing Service (ETS)–the same company that brings us the Graduate Record Exam (GRE), the SAT, the PRAXIS tests, the AP Exams, and the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP).
NOTE works like this: a teacher candidate (student teacher) “teaches” a sample lesson for 6-7 minutes using a “virtual class” populated by 5-6 “avatar students,” and receives feedback from an artificial intelligence program. The NOTE system is a combination of video production and “advanced technology” developed by the US Military, according to Mark Atkinson, the CEO of the tech firm Mursion, Inc., which is responsible for the creation of the avatars and virtual reality environment used in NOTE.
ETS describes NOTE as a program that promises to “measure a teaching candidate’s readiness to teach in ways that are representative of real-life teaching experiences.” The operative word here is “representative,” as the teacher candidates are not assessed by observing their work in an actual The “Brave New World” of Teacher Evaluation | Eclectablog:


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