Evaluation in CDT Through Structured Group Work

Robert Farnham, Harold Wightman
1987, Vol. 19, No. 3,


Evaluation by students of their own design and finished articles can be a very difficult process both for the students and for staff. Some teachers tend to leave the teaching of evaluation until it looms up as a requirement of the examination, but it is then a doubly difficult task to develop in students the attitudes and approaches they need. The difficulty of evaluation was first identified as a major problem for us through analysis of a lesson with some l2-year-olds. The lesson was being observed by an Assistant Head during a year's secondment. The class teacher had invited comment on the development of a newly introduced Design course to replace the traditional separate Crafts. By this stage of the course, the mixed-ability class had spent some weeks designing an object in response to a design brief. They had gone throu~h the process of finding a range of possible solutions, choosing the 'best' solution and then making it.

Now came the difficulty - students were at a loss to answer the question on the evaluation sheet which asked, 'Does the finished article satisfy the demands of the original design brief?' Other teachers were also at a loss: they all found it only too easy to give an evaluation of the article, but did not know how to lead students' thinking into the same path.

Full Text: