Transforming Math Tests with GRASPS

Last year my teaching partner and I hypothesized that we could blend our traditional test with a authentic assessment to make a hybrid that demonstrated the skills and understanding from our unit on geometry within a real world application. What we decided was that in our unit on geometry, our students would play the role of construction company 'contractors' and if they demonstrated competency, they would be awarded the contract.

Outlining the Problem
The problem which you'll see below is whether students can apply their understanding of geometry to solving a number of challenges related to real-world applications in the setting of a construction company. The setting was the outdoor atrium and required a number of materials, notably calculators, trundle wheels, and a variety of measuring equipment. 


I wanted to proctor this like a test, but knew that students would have to get out and measure items in a more authentic setting. The guidelines were that students could roam around and get measurements but that they need to work independently.We uses the GRASP scenario for authentic tasks which is:

Image courtesy of: http://xnet.rrc.mb.ca/glenh/CourseImplementation/grasps.htm



Grading Problems
The biggest with a problem like this is the standardization of grading. If a student measured one area section that was a meter different than their peers it created vastly different numbers. Usually, grading 20 math tests takes me 45 minutes, but with this, it took me twice as long.




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