Formative Assessment in Higher Education: Particularities of Appreciative Intelligence of University Teachers in Formative Assessment Process

Formative Assessment in Higher Education: Particularities of Appreciative Intelligence of University Teachers in Formative Assessment Process

Birnaz Nina (State University of Moldova, Moldova) and Valeria Botezatu (State University of Moldova, Moldova)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-2314-8.ch006

Abstract

This chapter describes the particularities of the appreciative intelligence of university teachers in the formative assessment. Appreciative intelligence is the ability to identify the qualities and positive aspects of a person, and to harness them. In the educational field, the appreciative intelligence of the teacher consists of essential components: appreciative inquiry (research), appreciative advising, and appreciative mindset. The chapter describes the concept of appreciative intelligence, being presented different acceptances and opinions of the researchers. The second part of the chapter highlights the problems and contradictions regarding the appreciative intelligence in the educational field and analyzes the appreciative intelligence of university teachers in the formative assessment process. This chapter proposes an evaluation and training program of the appreciative intelligence of university teachers based on its systemic context. The chapter ends with solutions and recommendations, a conclusion, and future research directions.
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Introduction

At the current stage, formative assessment is the core of the priorities in managerial decisions of intercorrelation of learning processes with competences as learning products. In higher education, formative assessment is a process of measuring and improving learning outcomes, as well as a process of developing proactive behavior of students, metacognitive skills, self-reflection and self-regulation skills of their own learning. Therefore, the formative assessment consists not only in providing information about learning outcomes, but in the process that uses this information to influence and improve student learning in the future.

The formative assessment competence of university teachers includes the intersection of the didactic triangle, consisting of components - content, student, teacher, with the assessment triangle, consisting of components - measurement, feedback, appreciation (Birnaz & Botezatu, 2019). Appreciation is an essential process in the formative assessment, through its function of issuing of value judgments about the student’s potential. Starting from the ideas presented, we consider that an essential skill of the teachers, which is built in the formative assessment process, is the appreciative intelligence. In this sense, the teacher has the role of focusing his thinking on the positive aspects and recognizing the student’s potential, guiding them towards achieving the preset objectives.

This chapter presents the concept of appreciative intelligence of university teachers, which involves a system consisting of three essential interconnected components: appreciative inquiry (research), appreciative advising and appreciative mindset. Appreciative research is a philosophy of change and involves a process focused on harness on the positive experiences of the actors involved in the educational process to produce change. Appreciative advising is a multi-phase process, based on the interrelation between teacher and students, in order to harness student's potential. Appreciative mindset is the system of capacities centered on the appreciation of the positive aspects of the student and their development in the context of initial vocational training. The chapter aims to identify and analyze the particularities of the appreciative intelligence of university teachers in the formative assessment process. This chapter proposes an evaluation and training program of the appreciative intelligence of university teachers based on its systemic context.

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Background

In the 21st century, the intelligence is considered to be a very complex construct. The interest areas of researchers focuses on the concept of „intelligent intelligences”, which includes practical, social and emotional intelligence. In the first half of the 1900s, E. Thorndike, an American psychologist, uses the term social intelligence as the ability to understand and to act wisely in human relations. In the same research direction, in 1983, H. Gardner (1983) identified 7 types of intelligence, including interpersonal intelligence, which represents the abilities to evaluate the states of others, to understand them, to know what motivates people and makes them cooperate and intrapersonal intelligence, consisting of the ability to have a proper representation about one’s self, good self-assessment, self-knowledge and emotional regulation. According to H. Goleman (2007), social intelligence represents both the ability of the human being to perceive others in a certain way, and the willful actions that he / she subsequently does to influence others in a certain sense. Thus, the author differentiates two components of social intelligence: social consciousness - what we notice about others (qualities, emotions, thoughts, etc.) and social misunderstanding - how we act and react when we make a certain diagnosis of the other.

After the 2000s, a new dimension of social intelligence that is in the field of research is appreciative intelligence. Appreciative intelligence is one of the skills increasingly in demand in the context of multiple crises and social changes. The term characterizes the positive side of the development process, affirms its strengths and its positive aspects, and changes risks into opportunities.

According to the dictionary, we understand the meaning of the concept of appreciative intelligence by defining the terms:

Key Terms in this Chapter

Connection: The situation in which the teacher establishes with the students a psychological framework favorable to realize the didactic activities.

Appreciative Advising: Complex action accomplished in order to develop the potential of students in the initial training.

Appreciative Inquiry: An approach to research that focuses on what works and is positive in the educational institution and the actors involved in educational activities.

Appreciation: The guiding action of the students in applying the cognitive and metacognitive strategies corresponding to the potential of each student.

Scaffolding Learning: The situation in which students collaborate with teachers and / or colleagues to understand how to solve complex problems.

Appreciative Education: Psycho-pedagogical approach to improving educational institutions and the people involved in its activities, focusing on the strengths and potential of individuals and organizations to achieve the objectives.

Appreciative Mindset: The system of teacher’s capacities focused on the enhancing and appreciation that allows to identify the positive potential of the students.

Mastery Learning: The situation where students have enough time, attention and help to demonstrate that they understand and can apply what they have learned before a new learning unit.

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