Definitions of Educational Terms



Artifacts are anything that a student or teacher makes or does that can be used as evidence to support a claim. Oral statements, written, recorded video and audio, drawings, models, grades, portfolio, student groupings, nonverbal behaviors....

Assessment is the collection of data. It is the measurement activities educators use to attempt to make valid inferences about students' knowledge, skills, and dispositions; as well as using those measurements and inferences to decide curricular aims, instructional strategies that are developmentally and academically appropriate, and if an instructional sequence was successful.

Authentic assessment where students perform tasks that demonstrate meaningful application of knowledge, skills, and dispositions. The closer the task is to what people face in the world as mechanics, construction workers, designers, business people, politicians, parents, citizens, the more authentic the assessment.


Performance assessment
is a task where students' actions while completing or attempting to complete the tasks can be observed and compared against a scale or range of performances to determine a level of comprehension, skill, and/ or disposition on a continuum of performance possibilities.

Benchmarks are generalizations or groups of generalizations that are usually written as outcomes or objectives and used to assess students' learning at very broad intervals of time (years).


Concept is an idea about a particular phenomenon people abstract from specific experiences. The idea includes all the properties that distinguish examples of the concept from all the non examples of the concept. Examples: plants, animal, rock, soil, dog, cat… Concepts can be concrete or abstract. Concrete concepts such as temperature as degrees on a thermometer, mammal as a dog, cat etc. Abstract concepts such as temperature as molecular energy, mammals as warm-blooded vertebrate with a four chambered heart, that bears live young, nurses them etc.


Critical thinking is the art of reflecting and evaluating our conscious understanding and ways of thinking with the hope of improving them.


Curriculum is our educational aims: the knowledge, skills, and dispositions we hope our educational efforts will produce in students. Curricular aims include: goals, objectives, outcomes, and standards. These aims are represented in a variety of documents, but more importantly are the mental representations and emotional feelings different people consciously or unconsciously use to influence their decisions.


Evaluation is the ranking or rating of a particular artifact or collections of artifacts. It is the process of putting a value on the artifact(s).


Fact is something that actually existed, object or event, and can be verified by observation. Facts are single occurrences.


Gateway
is a predetermined place in an educational sequence where students must demonstrate certain competencies.


Generalizations
are statements of a relationship between two or more concepts. Examples: All matter has volume and mass. There is a relationship between an object's volume and surface area. Notice each requires understanding of each concept to have meaning. Generalizations can also be a generalized condition of fact, all dogs have canines.


Goal
is a broad or general statement reflecting the ultimate ends toward which the total educational program is directed. (Some texts sometimes refer to these as aims.)

Imagination is what makes our sensory experience meaningful, enabling us to interpret and make sense of it, whether from a conventional perspective or from a fresh, original, individual one. It is what makes perception more than the mere physical stimulation of sense organs. It also produces mental imagery, visual and otherwise, which is what makes it possible for us to think outside the confines of our present perceptual reality, to consider memories of the past and possibilities for the future, and to weigh alternatives against one another. Thus, imagination makes possible all our thinking about what is, what has been, and, perhaps most important, what might be.


Instruction is the means people use to attempt to achieve their curricular aims. Specifically what teachers do to help students learn what they believe students are supposed to learn as well as any consequential learning from those actions that were not anticipated by the teacher (hidden curriculum).


Instructional Objectives are descriptions of what a learner is to do to demonstrate competence. Performance outcomes may describe different levels of what students may do to demonstrate the level of competency or conceptualization of a concept and/or skill they have achieved. Performance outcomes are also known as Performance Outcomes or Learning Objectives.


Learning Objectives are descriptions of what a learner is to do to demonstrate competence. Performance outcomes may describe different levels of what students may do to demonstrate the level of competency or conceptualization of a concept and/or skill they have achieved. Performance outcomes are also known as Performance Outcomes or Instructional Objectives.


Literacy is competency in the ability to read and assign meaning, and to write with coherence, proper structure and writing mechanics.


Mathematizing - the human activity of organizing and interpreting reality mathematically.


Motivation is the force that drives a person to do something. It includes varying emotions such as: initiative, drive, intensity, persistence, that inhibit, neutralize, or promote goal-directed behaviors. Motivation - hunger; Goal - food; Strategy - raid the refrigerator


Pedagogy - the art or profession of teaching, and the instructional strategies used to induce learning.


Objectives are descriptions of what a learner is to do to demonstrate competence. Performance outcomes may describe different levels of what students may do to demonstrate the level of competency or conceptualization of a concept and/or skill they have achieved. Performance outcomes are also known as
Performance Outcomes, Instructional or Learning Objectives.


Performance Outcomes are descriptions of what a learner is to do to demonstrate competence. Performance outcomes may describe different levels of what students may do to demonstrate the level of competency or conceptualization of a concept and/or skill they have achieved. Performance outcomes are also known as Instructional Objectives or Learning Objectives.


Dimensions of a Subject or Discipline include:


Subject Content Knowledge - the ideas (facts, concepts, generalizations, principles, theories, and or laws) that are created by doing the subject.

Subject or Discipline Process
- a system of actions and procedures that are used to create knowledge in the subject or discipline.

Subject or Discipline Perspective
- the relationship of the different dimensions of a subject or discipline to its other dimensions and to its whole as well as the subject's or discipline's relative significance for explaining and understanding the world.

Subject Attitude
- The disposition and values that people have that increase their likelihood of success in the subject or discipline.


Contact Webmaster | Member Neb. State College System |