A lab assessment refers to any type of assessment which is used to assess the ‘learning through doing’ that takes places in a teaching laboratory. A lab assessment may involve a variety of assessment types including writing a lab report, completing a test/quiz, designing a protocol or entry for a lab manual, developing an individual/group wiki, blog or eportfolio, participating in discussion fora and oral presentations.
Typically used to….
- assess technical skills (such as using laboratory equipment, tools, materials and software)
- Evaluate knowledge and understanding of laboratory procedures, including relevant health and safety guidelines
- assess problem-solving skills such as
- recognising and defining a problem
- formulating ideas
- designing experiments
- collecting and interpreting data
- testing concepts
- drawing conclusions
- communicating processes and outcomes
- assess knowledge and understanding of abstract concepts and theories
- evaluate ability to work as part of a team in laboratory settings
Key considerations when preparing for a lab assessment
When preparing for a lab assessment, always refer to the guidelines and requirements provided by your lecturer and keep the following points in mind:
- Be clear on what format the assessment will take. For example, it may involve:
- preparing a lab report
- handling data sets
- performing calculations
- designing a laboratory protocol or entry for a laboratory manual
- completing a test/quiz
- completing an individual or group research project
- designing a portfolio
- participating in discussion forums
- preparing an oral presentation on a relevant topic
- When you are likely to be assessed? You may be expected to complete an assessment for every practical you complete, and/or a final assessment at the end of the semester.
- Is the assessment being used for formative or summative assessment purposes (or both?)
- If your assessment contributes to your final grade (i.e. is being used for summative assessment), how much is it worth?
- Be clear on what you are being assessed on and what criteria is being used to evaluate your assessment performance. Has a rubric been provided?
- What guidelines you need to follow for the assessment. Is there a specific template or format you need to follow? Are you required to complete the assessment individually or as part of a group?
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