Various levels of impact; different ways of assessing
|This ELP-WSU (The European Language Portfolio in whole-school use) case study shows how evaluation of the project revealed several levels of impact. Impact should be integrated into evaluation if there is a need to evidence it. The case study describes a school in Hungary and adaptation of ELP for a particular purpose. In Hungary the introduction of the ELP was associated with curriculum reform, and this project was undertaken with official support. The project forged close links between the intercultural dimension and plurilingualism. Each year the Jewish community school that was home to the project sends a group of 10th-grade students on a study visit to Israel. There they use English and Hebrew (and sometimes Hungarian) to access a culture to which they already belong. This encourages them to seek other intercultural experiences, and some of them visit other countries and take part in international Jewish youth meetings. Plurilingual and intercultural experience is part of the everyday life of the school thanks to the presence of students who come from abroad or have a home language other than Hungarian; sporting and cultural events also play a role. In the Hungarian project the preparation of teachers was guided by a checklist of things to keep in mind, and questionnaires were used to evaluate the project. See Hungarian case study here. In addition, all of the case studies on this site contain a section focusing on impact and demonstrating different ways of evaluating it.
In the LACS network meeting, a participant reported on the following way of reviewing the impact of CEF-ESTIM (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages - level estimation grid for teachers):
• Potential impact: Skills development; CEFR related bank of lessons and resources per level for a number of languages in the secondary curriculum
• This was assessed/evaluated by means of:
o Review and evaluation by teacher educators (questionnaire)
o Review and evaluation by teachers/student teachers involved (journal, focus groups and questionnaire)
o Feedback from students ( questionnaire)
See the CEF-ESTIM flyer.
Here is a video introducing the grid and the training kit including the level estimation grid and description form.
The Baltic participants in the LACS network meeting proposed that impact and use of DOTS (Developing Online Teaching Skills) could be evaluated in relation to raised awareness and teachers’ understanding of the online materials by using a real blog, shared online i.e. using DOTS itself as an evaluation tool.
Participants in LACS meetings reported the following impact of MORE DOTS: it gave teachers added resources, competence, and self-reliance in choosing the right tools for every task; it empowered teachers to use technology to reach their teaching objectives and the objectives of the curriculum; it had take-away-value, adding value in teaching practice, especially when ideas are shared with others. Ongoing evaluation could include teacher feedback and self-assessment. More can be found in the videoclips.
LACS (Language associations and collaborative support): Participation in the LACS workshop by the National Contact Point in Croatia has led to greater awareness of the benefits for the state ministry of working with and supporting language teacher associations.
The impact of projects used for development in a particular context, e.g. a university teacher education programme, can be seen in the normal institutional evaluation processes, e.g. the use of EPOSTL (European Portfolio for Student Teachers of Languages) in Bulgaria.