September 1, 2005
Assessing the Impact of Technology in Teaching and Learning: A Sourcebook for Evaluators
This online publication by Jerome Johnston and Linda Toms Barker examines a number of case studies related to technology integration in school settings. This document would be particularly helpful for someone considering an evaluation of a technology literacy initiative. This document has an extensive bibliography as well as a measurement index (which lists what types of measures were used in the evaluations they mentioned in their report).
The full report is available online.
Category "Digital Literacy"
August 4, 2005
Digital Literacy Checklist
The University of Washington offers a digital literacy checklist designed specifically for PC users.
Laura Larsson, developer of the checklist, defines digital literacy as "the ability to understand and use information in multiple formats from a wide range of sources when it is presented via computers."
The checklist is a self-assessment that covers a range of topics, including keyboarding, mouse, and related skills; desktop competencies; and internet competencies. Under each competency are a number of items, many of which have hyperlinks to explanations, practice tutorials, and other weblink references.
The Digital Literacy Checklist was developed in 1997, and revised in 2000 and 2002, so it is not currently up to date, but it does have several information literacy items.
Category "University of Minnesota"
June 29, 2005
Computer Literacy Self-Assessment
The University of Minnesota Duluth online student handbook offers students an opportunity to assess their computer literacy skills. Students can rate their own abilities in the following areas: ability to operate a computer; ability to use e-mail and internet to communicate and locate information; word processing ability; create a worksheet using a spreadsheet; creating and manipulating a database; creating and manipulating graphic files;applying general technology knowledge and skills. These assessment items were adapted from MnSCU/U of M Distance Learning Initiative. The webpage says that it has not been updated since 2002; as a result, some items (such as "format diskettes") are somewhat outdated.
Category "Information Literacy"
June 15, 2005
ETS's Information and Communications Technology Test
Educational Testing Services has been developing an Information and Communications Technology Literacy Assessment, or the ICT Literacy Assessment.
An interesting feature of the assessment is that it uses school and workplace scenarios as the context for assessments. Students are given a scenario in which they must create a graph for a presentation, for example. In another case, students must conduct a boolean search, and the assessment judges the student based on their use of search terms, as well as their ability to respond to the computer's suggestions on how to improve the search.
More information on the assessment too, including an interactive demo, can be found on the ETS website.
In addition, National Public Radio recently did a short feature on the ICT assessment. That story can be downloaded here.