EVALCOA: AN ANDROID APPLICATION TO EVALUATE THE PARTICIPATION OF STUDENTS IN FACE-TO-FACE THEORETICAL SESSIONS
, I. de Miguel
, N. Merayo
, O. Peña
, A. Blázquez
, J.C. Aguado
, J. Blas
, R.J. Durán
, P. Fernández
, R.M. Lorenzo
, E.J. Abril
Universidad de Valladolid (SPAIN)
The continuous assessment of the students has a very relevant role in the European Higher Education Area. One of the key issues to assess is the activity of the student in classrooms or labs. Hence, the teacher must observe, take notes and capture evidences of the activities done by the students in those face-to-face sessions in order to provide feedback and evaluate those activities. Tablets and mobile phones are widespread devices and have great potential in education. In fact, they can help the teacher on the tasks previously mentioned, as they can be used to register evidences of the participation, skills and work done by the students in face-to-face sessions in a digital way.
We have considered two different types of sessions: lab or seminar sessions, where the student plays the leading role, and theoretical sessions, where the teacher plays the main role. The different characteristics of these sessions translate in a different way of doing continuous assessment.
To assess the work of students in labs/seminars, in ICERI 2015 we presented Assessment Notebook Creator, an Android application which creates electronic notebooks (for Evernote®) which can then be used to register evidences of the work done by students in those sessions. A digital notebook is flexible enough to collect different types of evidences as required in labs/seminars, and moreover, the teacher has enough time availability during those sessions to assess the students (besides guiding and helping them).
In contrast, theoretical sessions are characterized by the leading role of the teacher, as he spends most of the time lecturing, while the activity of the students is usually quite limited. So, the items to be assessed are typically related to the quantity and quality of the students’ participation when the teacher asks any question. Moreover, as the main activity of the teacher is to explain the lecture, he does not have much time for assessing during the session. For these reasons, we have developed an Android application called Evalcoa, a very simple application where the teacher can easily and quickly register the participation of the students in the classroom.
Once the teacher opens the Evalcoa application, he can select the subject that he is going to teach. Then, the application shows the pictures and names of the students, and just by clicking on “plus” or “minus” icons next to each picture, the lecturer can register positives or negatives for that student. Next to the picture, the balance of positives and negatives received by the student is also displayed. Of course, not all types of participations have the same quality, so that for those especially brilliant participations, the teacher can add more than one positive. This is the most pragmatic option that we have found when using the tool in the classroom when compared with other options, like adding comments, which is also supported by the tool. All these events (addition of positives, negatives or comments) are registered in a log file together with the name of the students and the date and time in which they took place.
Of course, the application also provides functionalities to add, modify or delete subjects, to import a list of students and the pictures associated to them, to manually add new students or to modify the data associated to them, as well as to send reports and log files to the teacher via e-mail.
The application is currently available at http://uvadoc.uva.es/handle/10324/17511