Educators are constantly searching for effective ways to improve student learning and enhance student outcomes.
Assessment and consultation are brought together in Assistive technology: A collaborative approach. The formation of the Partnership for Assistive Technology (PAT) will address the diverse needs for assistive technology use for college students with disabilities. Larwood illustrates a program of consultation and collaboration between "Deaf Role Models" and early intervention programs for deaf students. Teacher development through assessment is analyzed in Kayler's manuscript; exit portfolios are discussed as they relate to teachers' professional growth.
Assessment of students is addressed specifically by Labissiere and Reynolds in Knowing our students: A prior learning assessment. This case study is presented to assist faculty to better serve the diverse population of students in higher education. Similarly, recommendations for assessing English learners are presented by Lopez to assist teachers in improving student outcomes. A detailed paper, by Martin, describes the latent semantic analysis metric that can assist university programs with their outcomes and objectives.
Educators are no longer able to work in isolation--even in testing. Three professors from the College of Charleston, South Carolina present a collaborative testing and academic achievement model which demonstrates that collaborative testing alone has a significant positive association with test performance that varies by the level of cognitive processing in the test question.
Several articles present successful collaborative teaching models. Stang and Capp present teacher reactions to a collaborative teaching technique, co-teaching, which is used to provide services to middle school students while Lessons on literacy provides a snapshot of an effective co-teaching model for elementary literacy instruction. Bekins and Merriam suggest ways to use experiential learning to teach students to collaborate and consult especially in writing. Sloan describes three pictures of collaboration, all of which depend upon committed community volunteers. A Picture Person Art Program, a chorus supported by a church and an elementary school, and a soccer league which provides services to underserved students all were successful programs. Diverse settings for collaborative programs were evident in McNichol's Art-full collaboration: Chinese forms and motions where an elementary school and a museum are involved in two different programs to integrate Chinese language, culture, and art. Scientific researchers and classroom teachers are brought together in the Teacher in the Woods project described by Dresner and Starvel. Through this partnership classroom, teachers gain important information about current ecological endeavors. Garbett and Tynan-Yourn present reflective themes from research collaboration that can be used to benefit future research collaborators and collaborations.
It is our hope that you enjoy this engaging Academic Exchange Quarterly issue full of useful, practical, and creative ways to better integrate effective consultation, collaboration, and assessment into your and your students' educational experiences.
Kristin K. Stang, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, California State University, Fullerton
Melinda R. Pierson, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, California State University, Fullerton