On 8th of August 2019, I flew to Medan to attend the 66th International TEFLIN Conference. There, I sat for several seminars regarding with Teaching English and its relations. Btw, The TEFLIN itself is the short of Teaching English as Foreign Language in Indonesia. Thus, the conference more or less is about several seminars and expo with a lot of topics about teaching and English. There were actually two topics that caught my eyes on. One of them is about Dynamic Assessment.
If you don’t know what assessment is, perhaps you can connect it the your assignments, Midterm or final test, and even practical assignment. Those are several examples of assessment. Now, Dynamic Assessment is a whole different world from the kind of assessment you know. From the seminar, I got that Dynamic Assessment is way of knowing the students’ understanding of a material through more relaxed way. I call it as Scaffolding assessment, because the students themselves must recall what they understand about the material but the teacher can only be the facilitator of the assessment process. Just like scaffolding, the difference is only the situation. Scaffolding is usually used in teaching and learning process, but it is very rare to use in assessing process. Why? Because scaffolding is a very complicated and time-consuming way of teaching. Students need to be an active communicator and teacher must really focus on how far the students understand the material during the class. Plus, teacher is forbidden to give a direct explanation to the students, otherwise, teacher only gives the clues so that the students can answer and be expected to understand the teacher’s message. Therefore, it needs a lot of time allocation for conducting the scaffolding.
Now, The common questions raised during the seminar were “is it suitable for Education system in Indonesia”, will Indonesian students be familiar with this kind of assessment? And the speaker, Prof. Dr. Claudia Harsch stated that it depends on the learning situation. She conducted the research for adult students from different background of education. She believed that this assessment could be implemented if the teacher can communicatively interact to the students. However, the assessment will be difficult to implement for a big number of classroom, in the case of time allowance. Furthermore, Prof. Claudia also said that Dynamic Assessment is the type of assessment and evaluation, which does not depend on the numerical score, yet it is only used for the teacher to make sure that the students understand with the material. Instead of using direct question-answer process that can make the students feel cornered and eventually answer the question hastily, the teacher can start with scaffolding question and continue with leading questions to the desired materials.
So, after reading about this kind-of-new assessment, do you think it is applicable in Indonesia? Do you, as the students wish to have this kind of assessment in your class?
Also, wait for my next post about other seminar result.