Key to the On-Grade Model is the central role of discrete knowledge and skills definitions at the operational level as the common denominator in the educational process. Using this operational level of knowledge and skill content, educators can create effective alignment between all educational components at a workable, classroom level.
A significant benefit of using operational level content as learning objectives is the ability to track individual student learning in real-time at that level. This process provides pinpointed identification of learning gaps and enables timely and cost effective intervention.
The system's standards library is just that, a reference library of published standards for a course. That includes state and local standards, any syllabus, AP standards, or anything that establishes the course objectives, including both cognitive and non-cognitive content.
Standards come in all varieties of structure and specificity with most needing some further refinement to reach defined teachable and measurable content at specific cognitive levels. In our system, the knowledge and skill library includes the greatest possible universe of content. Planned course content is defined through creation of a course scope - a checklist against the universe of content to represent the course learning objectives.
The system provides tools to organize the instructional sequence of the course by allocating content to units and lessons in a course outline or plan. Once content is resolved to the lesson plan level, the system supports writing individual lessons or finding existing lessons with similar content scope to use or adapt. Library content has teacher ratings to make the selection process very efficient.
Using the course content allocated to units and lesson plans, educators can quickly find assessment items for any purpose. Complete assessments are built as a collection of individual assessment items. The system provides real-time feedback on alignment to the planned scope and the estimated time required. The system automatically generates rubrics for scoring.
Once the operational level content is determined for a course, prerequisites can be identified. This is an automatic system function made possible by links between content. Once identified, students in a course can be tested and their proficiencies in the prerequisites measured to identify gaps in foundational content. Closure of these gaps before proceeding with instruction provides a solid starting point for learning the whole course of instruction and driving the next level of high achievement.
Tracking student learning at the objective level is supported by system-generated rubrics. These rubrics create entries in the student learning profile based on responses to the objective-linked assessment items. The system resolves multiple assessment records and manual observations to a confidence level of achievement for each course objective. Using the course plan, the system knows what learning should have been accomplished - the plan - and compares that to the observations - the actual. Learning gaps are revealed without need for translation or interpretation and provide teachers, students and parents with actionable information.