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Educational Measurements and Evaluation

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Evaluation, as the method of defining how good or bad something is, has always been an integral part of education. In his work Verner (1944) examines how the educational process could be improved provided that the kind of evaluation mentioned here was implemented.

Evaluation does not exist in isolation; it is always influenced by the evaluator’s beliefs and the purpose of education. An effective means of evaluation realization is measurement. Proper measurement adds to good evaluation.

To present intelligent evaluation, certain factors need to be taken into consideration. A teacher has to be certain about the purposes and the methods employed by him or her for control, about the learner’s needs, and the outcomes of the study. The writer also suggests that to define whether any course in the curriculum is effective or not, a number of questions have to be answered. Firstly, one has to know the reasons and methods of running the course, how it could be modified according to the needs of students, how they would be motivated and so on. Secondly, Verner (1944) mentions “questions relating to the pupils’ needs, purposes and methods” (p. 20). Thirdly, the teacher should be certain about the results of the course. Moreover, the effectiveness of any training depends on the individual methods of the teacher, the way he or she manages the pupils, and on the atmosphere established in the class.

In addition, during the studying process, a pupil could acquire a kind of knowledge not related to the course. This might be, for example, social or personal skills. Moreover, such a new knowledge is not necessarily positive. To define an overall preparatory value of the course, one has to analyze its every aspect that might have some educational potential.

The abovementioned information is also vital while thinking of education as an ongoing process. Teaching procedures and methods become even more important when it comes to intelligent living, for everything taught at schools will be used by pupils in their further lives.

So, schools are faced with a tough choice while making a decision about how appropriate a course is. Verner (1944) mentions that to make a wise decision, appropriate data is needed, and it includes “dependable information on the milieu into which the learner is placed and the reasons for placing him there, and on the needs and purposes of and the methods employed by the learner, as well as information on the outcomes observable in the learner as the experience continues.” (p. 22).

In reality, however, information is incomplete. The reason for this may lie in the fact that there has been a lack of accuracy during the data collection process. It may also happen that most attention has been placed on measurement of the immediately obtained knowledge, while other aspects of the studying process are not considered.

Verner suggests that we placed more efforts into these aspects description. He also mentions that some of the helpful techniques already exist, and pupils’ needs and purposes can be numerically represented even nowadays. The author of the article is convinced that the problem of proper evaluation is caused not by the lack of methodology, but by insufficient motivation of those related to education. Therefore, it is easier to follow the idea that if students do well on any test once, the experience was useful. Without careful investigation, such hasty evaluation is inadequate.

To my mind, Verner has shown a deep desire to improve a teaching-learning process. It is true that, in many cases, evaluation is based on crude calculations and is not accurate. Such factors as further value of courses and the way they develop other skills in pupils should be taken into consideration. However, not all courses are to have an educational potential of this kind. Every teaching situation is different and has to be treated differently. The author seems to be unrealistic when talking about what proper evaluation should be. Some of his suggestions are too idealistic and are incompatible with practical education.

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