Concept maps for formative assessment: Creation and implementation of an automatic and intelligent evaluation method

Tom Bleckmann,Gunnar Friege

Knowledge Management & E-Learning: An International Journal(2023)

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Formative assessment is about providing and using feedback and diagnostic information. On this basis, further learning or further teaching should be adaptive and, in the best case, optimized. However, this aspect is difficult to implement in reality, as teachers work with a large number of students and the whole process of formative assessment, especially the evaluation of student performance takes a lot of time. To address this problem, this paper presents an approach in which student performance is collected through a concept map and quickly evaluated using Machine Learning techniques. For this purpose, a concept map on the topic of mechanics was developed and used in 14 physics classes in Germany. After the student maps were analysed by two human raters on the basis of a four-level feedback scheme, a supervised Machine Learning algorithm was trained on the data. The results show a very good agreement between the human and Machine Learning evaluation. Based on these results, an embedding in everyday school life is conceivable, especially as support for teachers. In this way, the teacher can use and interpret the automatic evaluation and use it in the classroom.
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Key words
formative assessment,concept maps,machine learning,feedback
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