Learning loss. It’s on every educator, administrator, and parent’s mind with the dawn of a new school year. And, as you might imagine, the COVID-19 pandemic has only made concerns grow.
It will likely be years before we fully understand the impact of learning loss during the pandemic, but we know they are far-reaching. UNESCO found that over 1.6 billion learners in more than 190 countries were out of school during the height of the pandemic, and, on average, two-thirds of an academic year has been lost because of the closures.
Not to mention the negative impacts on social-emotional learning.
Truly, we’re in unprecedented times (*audience groans*), but here are a few advantages Career and Technical Education (CTE) teachers nationwide have up their sleeves for overcoming learning loss with Precision Exams by YouScience.
Pretests, Posttests & Single Exams help benchmark learning loss
While we could talk all day about why you should be pretesting, we’ll keep it brief… capturing baseline results matters!
For the educator, it provides a jumping-off point for classroom planning and curriculum development. By first gauging the level of student’s knowledge in a particular subject, you can use the data in the included reports to better understand where gaps may have formed in their learning (aka learning loss) and better plan your curriculum.
For the student, well, it does the same thing…
- Helps them understand where they may face difficulties and need to pay more attention in class.
- Validates the knowledge they have already gained.
- Provides some familiarity with our testing system before the final.
- Gives them motivation to ace the posttest and earn their industry-recognized credential.
With a full Site License, you can even use a single exam as a midterm to benchmark student progress and maximize student success.
“[My students] have taken the pretest and make reference to something that I am talking about as being on the test, It’s like a learning target that they themselves trigger. I think they are looking forward to taking the posttest to prove how much they have learned in the class.”
Lori Pagel – Teacher in Minnesota
Performance Standards set clear expectations to prevent learning loss
All 200+ career certification exams in our library are designed in cooperation with subject-matter and industry experts. Each exam includes a blueprint for the course that details the performance standards – a.k.a. the skills employers need – so you can set clear expectations for your students.
We know students are more engaged when they have an answer to “why” they are learning something. By showing them exactly what they’re expected to know to earn a certification, you’re giving them that “why.” You can make connections between what they’re learning in class and how it plays into industry expectations while empowering them with the knowledge of what’s to come.
It’s not only the students who gain clarity with these performance standards but also the parents. You can use these documents at parent-teacher conferences and back-to-school events to create a better understanding of what students are learning, which leads to more intentional conversations about their performance and makes it easier to identify specific strengths and areas for improvement.
Industry benefits too! With regularly updated standards, Layla Schakner, a health science teacher in California, said:
“I think that [knowing] industry standards are being met is a benefit to industry partners, because they don’t have to work so hard to prescreen. Those Precision Exams by YouScience [certifications] will speak to the student before they even get there. They are proving themselves with their resumes.”
Knowledge of aptitudes empowers action
If your school uses the comprehensive YouScience product, you have the added advantage of the YouScience Discovery aptitude assessment to aid in:
- Enhancing students’ self-awareness & empowerment
- Improving pathway alignments through intentional conversations
- Encouraging informed career decision making & exploration
- Diversifying & expanding CTE programs
As David Wilson, a computer science teacher in Tennessee, told Government Technology, “From my perspective, YouScience provides a way to encourage kids that specifically plays to their strengths. It gives people who are teaching CTE an ability to know the students in front of them.”
By supporting and getting to know the whole student, you’re better enabled to empower them for their future through intentional, data-driven conversations and training. And when students are empowered… there’s nothing they can’t learn.
P.S. Did you know you can use the performance standards as a study guide for students?
Connect students to their best-fit pathways, careers, and post-secondary opportunities.
To learn more about YouScience and how this unique platform is changing students’ lives, connect with one of our regional directors.