Glossary of Terms to Promote a Common Language


unit scenario:
Mental picture of the unit as it unfolds, which is envisioned to assist in the planning process.

A characteristic of scoring criteria that ensures that the criteria are diagnostic and can communicate information about performance quality with clear implications for improvement.

Visual, Auditory, Kinesthetic-Tactile: (Just the Facts ­ The International Dyslexia Association) A multi-sensory teaching method in which links are made between the visual, auditory, and kinesthetic-tactile modalities. Students are encouraged to see, hear,say and write simultaneously to strengthen associations and establish memory patterns. This approach is utilized to teach recognition of non-phonetic sight words and to reinforce spelling skills.

The process of developing,field testing, refining, piloting and refining assessment items, tasks,scoring tools, directions, etc. to increase validity, reliability,fairness and instructional usefulness.

The extent to which an assessment method produces accurate,meaningful, and useful measures of the skills and knowledge it was designed to assess. The primary issue is content validity, which is whether an assessment and instructional program align (match).

variety of assessments:
Two or more assessment instruments or procedures which are of different kinds or at least rich enough to capture the full range of knowledge, strategies and levels of thinking in an outcome. For each standard, students must be assessed by multiple tasks that are distinctly different in content and the student's processing of information or demonstration of skill.

virtual reality:
Virtual reality refers to computer-aided sensory experience that simulates reality.

A vivid picture of what should be, could be, and might be used to guide actions in the present.

vocational education:
As defined by the U.S.Department of Education, vocational education consists of "organized educational programs, services, and activities that are directly related to the preparation of individuals for paid or unpaid employment, or for additional preparation for a career that does not require a baccalaureate or an advanced degree." Secondary and post secondary vocational course work is typically offered in three areas:

  1. Consumer & homemaking education-courses intended to prepare students for roles outside the paid labor market. Topics include child care, meal preparation, nutrition, and household management.
  2. General labor market preparation-courses that teach general employment skills without necessarily preparing students for paid employment in a specific field. Instruction includes introductory work processing, industrial courses, business education, and work experience and career exploration.
  3. Specific labor market preparation-courses that teach skills and provide information required in a particular vocation. Areas of specific labor market preparation include: agriculture, business, marketing and distribution, health, occupational home economics (I.E., preparation for paid employment in the service sector), trade and industry, and technology and communication.

voice impairment:
A term used to describe the abnormal production and/or absence of vocal quality, pitch, loudness,resonance, and/or duration which is inappropriate for one's age and/or sex.

vouchers (also see Tuition Tax Credits):
Vouchers are an element of the educational choice proposals that allocate a set amount of money per student in the form of a voucher. The vouchers, and therefore, the state funds, are distributed to the school at which the student enrolls,whether state, parochial, or private. Wherever the student chooses to enroll, the funding follows.

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