THE Assessment, Curriculum, and Technology Research Center (ACTRC) urged education officials to consider the use of learning progression over numerical grades to assess the proficiency of students in learning competencies.
ACTRC Australian Deputy Director Dr. Pam Robertson said that the old system summarizes learning with a single score or grade but without the context of what it stands for. She said that assessment based on competencies would better describe students' proficiency.
“In this digital world where people can look things up on the internet, [people] are less interested in what someone knows – they are more interested in what someone can do,” she pointed out.
ACTRC Philippine Deputy Director Dr. Nona Marlene Ferido explained that the use of learning progression will make use of “steps or stages that students go through as they progress toward mastering an important competency.”
She said that this could help identify areas where students are having difficulty and can show students' pre-requisite skills on which to build on, which grades or scores will not show.
“Learning progression will enable teachers to give effective feedback and adjust instruction according to the level of development of learners,” Ferido added.
To build on the use of learning progression, Robertson said that it requires teachers and education systems to be skilled in using assessment evidence.
In terms of curriculum, ACTRC focused its recommendations on adapting to the needs of an ever-changing world, including mother tongue-based multi-lingual education, appropriate curriculum pacing and sequencing and its implementation in classrooms, alignment of national assessments (Early Language, Literacy, and Numeracy Assessment; Grade 6 and 10 National Achievement Tests, and Basic Education Exit Assessment) to a single scale not only for monitoring but to provide diagnostic feedback, as well as graduate suitability.
It also pushes for the use of technology to make education more accessible and improve the quality of education. Robertson added that technology could also be used to improve assessments and curriculum.
Moreover, ACTRC celebrates its 10 years of doing research to innovate content, pedagogies and policies to enhance the quality of education, broaden its access and ensure its relevance.
“Here at ACTRC, we believe that assessment is key in the teaching and learning processes. Evidence-based data can be appropriately transformed into valuable information that can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of teaching, to monitor learning correctly, and to develop methods for students to maximize relevant learning opportunities and show their true proficiency,” Ferido emphasized.
ACTRC Philippine Director Prof. Marie Therese Bustos also assured the group's commitment to contribute to the enhancement and innovation of the Philippine education system.
“There is still much work to be done and ACTRC will continue its efforts to enhance the education system in the Philippines so that Filipino learners and educators can realize their full potential. We believe in the talents of Filipinos. We just need to help in the honing of these skills and to show them how to use it to better their lives and society,” she said.