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CAT 40 Diagnostic Learning Logs
Estimated Levels of Time and Energy Required for:
Faculty to prepare to use this CATMedium311-315
Students to respond to the assessmentHigh
Faculty to analyze the data collectedHigh
"Diagnostic Learning Logs are essentially limited, tightly focused versions of the academic journals many teachers already use. In these logs, students keep records of each class or assignment. When responding to class sessions, students write one list of the main point covered that they understood and a second list of points that were unclear. For assignments, students record problems encountered or errors made, as well as excellent and successful responses. At regular intervals, the students reflect on, analyze, and summarize the information they have collected on their own learning. They then diagnose their strengths and weaknesses as learners and generate possible remedies for problems."

"Diagnostic Learning Logs provide faculty with information and insight into their students’ awareness of and skill at identifying their own strengths and weaknesses as learners. Specifically, this technique assesses students’ skills at recognizing, documenting, diagnosing, and suggesting remedies for their own learning difficulties in specific classes. At the same time, it informs the teacher about the students’ ability to use those skills to assess their strengths and successes.

Much as good medical doctors question patients carefully to inform their diagnoses, a college teacher can use information gained through this technique to make more effective instructional diagnoses. Diagnostic Learning Logs provide teachers with opportunities for comparing their diagnoses and prescriptions for instructional “treatments” with those of informed and reflective students. They also provide students with practice in skills necessary to becoming independent, self-directed learners." — Classroom Assessment Techniques, Angelo, TA and Cross, KP, 1993

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