From watching the great talk from Sir Ken Robinson on “Changing Education Paradigms” I recently found this talk from Dan Pink that “illustrates the hidden truths behind what really motivates us at home and in the workplace.”
Watching this helped me realise a similarity between the reward mechanism that is sometimes offered to employees and the reward (grade) offered to students from their assessment. Dan uses the example of Atlassian, an Australian software company, that ‘releases’ their employees one day every quarter to work on anything they want, the only proviso (assessment) is that they show the results of this work or collaboration (see time-stamp in video above – from 5:50).
What if we could get students working like this? Let them produce anything, within a given framework (Atlassian define the business need as this criteria) and. I’m sure there would be huge issues when you bring things into the mix like marking criteria, assessment policies, etc, but could we let students shine in their own style and not ours? Can we make the marking criteria and/or policies surrounding assessment flexible enough to allow or encourage personal assessment? Can students be motivated not by grade but by achievement?