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Item Development Online Courses for Science and Mathematics Teachers
To improve the quality of science and mathematics teachers in Thailand, the Institute for the Promotion of Teaching Science and Technology (IPST) has developed a professional development online platform called “Teacher PD” since 2015. Various online training courses in science, mathematics and technology education are in this system. For the area of assessment, item development online courses are available for science and mathematics teachers at the lower secondary level. The purposes of these courses are to provide a big picture of school-based assessment and an opportunity to learn how to construct test items that aligned with the national curriculum. The courses are delivered online for teachers who registered through IPST Website. Each course was modified from the face-to-face training courses that had already been tried out and improved before putting in the platform. It has been designed to run with dedicated trainers over a period of eight weeks. The content consists of four modules: 1) Introduction to assessment, 2) Assessment framework, 3) Item development process, and 4) Constructing the test item. The trainees are assigned a variety of tasks that encourage them to improve their practical skills in assessment as well as a constructive discussion among trainees, while the trainers are responsible for giving effective feedback, criticizing and scoring assignments. At present, there are 402 teachers who passed the criteria and have received certificates. Certified trainees have become our networking in teacher professional development. IPST has learned that time constraint is the important factor for successfully completing an online course. Suggestions from participants are useful for further improvement.
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