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Date:         Wed, 5 Aug 2009 10:46:49 -0700
Reply-To:     Discussion of Topics for Soccer Referees
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Sender:       Discussion of Topics for Soccer Referees
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From:         "Wickham, Dennis" <[log in to unmask]>
Subject:      Re: Egregious example of "gotcha" testing
In-Reply-To:  A<[log in to unmask]>
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There are better ways to confirm that someone is actually watching an online presentation. One, of course, is to make the presentation interactive, which also tends to better learning. Online testing presents great opportunities that cannot be done in a book and number two pencil format, and which can be far closer to match experience. Showing a video and then asking a series of questions tests the ability to read and react to play. Someone can mark on a screen where someone should be positioned, far better than choosing A, B, or C answers on a static page. Computers can "read" text, in different languages, which means the test results will depend less on reading and comprehension skills than understanding core concepts. The words do indeed get in the way. But I fear that we will get stuck just converting old methods into new media. Dennis IRS CIRCULAR 230 NOTICE: To ensure compliance with requirements imposed by the Internal Revenue Service, we inform you that any U.S. tax advice contained in this communication (or in any attachment) is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed in this communication (or in any attachment). Confidential - August 5, 2009 This email and any associated files transmitted with it are confidential and intended solely for [log in to unmask] If you are not the named addressee do not disseminate, distribute, copy or alter this email. Please notify Seltzer Caplan McMahon Vitek by telephone at 619.685.3003, you will be reimbursed for any reasonable costs. Warning: SCMV has taken reasonable precautions to ensure no viruses are present in this email, the firm cannot accept responsibility for any loss or damage arising from the use of this email or attachments. -----Original Message----- From: Discussion of Topics for Soccer Referees [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Patrick Duffy Sent: Wednesday, August 05, 2009 8:53 AM To: [log in to unmask] Subject: Re: Egregious example of "gotcha" testing The traditional argument about on line testing is that, first, we (administrators) have no way of knowing who actually took the test and whether they had help taking it. Second, an on line test is, inevitably, open book, while actual games, at least in soccer, are not open book. It is my understanding that USSF is moving towards certain portions of the entry level class being taught on line before the student arrives at the class. I'm thinking of Laws 1,2,3,4,7,8,9 and 10. This will allow instructors to spend more time on Laws 11 and 12, as well as the Guide to Procedures, the areas where we find that newbies are the weakest. The final test would still be the determination of whether they had learned the material in the on line instruction portion of the course. As far as high school is concerned, the testing this year will be on line, at least in our state for those whose primary language is English. The test will not be available on line in Spanish. Even having the test in Spanish has been a challenge in the past. I know none of the details about the on line testing, however, een though the season starts in less than a month. I expect to hear more at our pre-season meeting next Friday. Patrick Duffy -----Original Message----- From: Discussion of Topics for Soccer Referees [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Ed Marco Sent: Wednesday, August 05, 2009 8:18 AM To: [log in to unmask] Subject: Re: Egregious example of "gotcha" testing Supposedly, from what I am told, the entry level course (and quite possibly others) will be mostly online like this except for the testing and field sessions. I hope that they will look at this FL recert testing as a way not to proceed with the course. It would be easy to enable the online review to issue a printed certificate so that each could bring that with them to testing or submit with paperwork. It could also send a notice to the administrators of the testing that an official had gone online and met the requirements. Adding stupid questions that have nothing to do with the thought process already in the mind of the test taker is just terrible planning and shows clearly no understanding in test writing and planning. Ed Marco > In Florida we've recently started our recert testing for 2010. The > five hour recert sessions have been revamped to comprise two hours of > on-line preperatory review followed by three hours in the classroom. > The idea behind this bifurcation was to make it possible to conduct > recerts on weekday evenings by shortening the amount of time in the > classroom. > > Conceptually it's a great idea. > > The state referee association incorporated several modules for the > on-line training: > > an introductory module explaining how the on-line training works, goal > safety, lightning, game reports, ball in play, misconduct. > > Referees were told that they must complete the on-line portion of the > training prior to attending the classroom session. Further, it was > understood that there would be questions on the written test covering > the on-line learning. But there was nothing programmed into the > on-line training to record that a student had, in fact, sat through > any or all of the modules. > > Five special questions were inserted as part of the the 50 question > USSF written test. These were to determine if the referee had > completed the on-line training. Again, conceptually it's a great idea. > However, the actual execution was ridiculous. > > Whomever wrote and/or selected the five questions apparently decided > that "gotcha" testing was appropriate as part of USSF recertification. > Here are some examples. > > One question asked the referee to identify the name of the software > vendor that developed the on-line testing system. > > Another question required the referee to identify the subject matter > of on-line module #5. > > In the first case it's hard to understand what possible value the > question adds to measuring a referee's knowledge and application of > the LOTG. While the name of the software vendor was displayed during > the on-line sessions it hardly seems reasonable to expect that anyone > would have paid special attention to that name so as to remember it at > test-taking time. Yes, the question may have measured whether the > referee actually watched the on-line sessions, but to use such a > question on a recert test that is supposed to demonstrate one's > qualifications to referee in 2010? > > "Gotcha" testing at its worst. > > The second question also seems completely pointless. If it had in > **any** way measured the referee's understanding of the **content** of > the materials discussed in module #5 that would have been fine. But > what purpose does it serve to expect the referee to remember > specifically which **topic** was covered in module #5 vs which were > covered in any of the other modules? > > Again, "gotcha" testing at its worst. > > Questions like these served only to be unfair measures of a referee's > ability to store and recall the most useless minutiae. They were > wasted opportunities to measure the effectiveness of on-line training > for referees. Clearly there are much better ways to do this. > > Sad, sad, sad. > > While the **content** of Florida's on-line modules was very good, I do > hope that those of you in other states who are or may be going to > on-line training get something better as the means of measuring the > effectiveness of the learning process. > > Gil

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