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Understanding a Design Pattern

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Curious about what a Design Pattern is, how it is used, and what it looks like? Here are answers to these basic questions.

What is a design pattern?

A design pattern is a tool to support the development and implementation of assessments or tasks that assess latent features, such as knowledge, skills, attitudes, and abilities. A design pattern helps in organizing the basic features of a measurement argument: (1) What are the claims that are being made in relation to a latent trait or construct? (2) What tasks are being performed from which data are collected? and (3) What data are attended to and how are they combined? Answers to these questions help in identifying differences and similarities across the multiple ways constructs are operationalized, which can enhance rigor in the measurement process as well as improve knowledge sharing and accumulation.

What is a design pattern used for as part of evidence-centered design?

Design patterns are used by multiple disciplines. When used in evidence-centered assessment design, they can help researchers develop several assessments/measures/tasks from a common set of guidelines and choices. They provide documentation and help designers articulate important aspects of an assessment argument.

What does a design pattern look like?

The most common view of a design pattern is a vertical layout of the attributes of the task(s) in the following order: student model, task model, and the evidence model. However, when developing design patterns, it is important to consider pairs of attributes and their associations. For example, considering the main construct with potential task features simultaneously might be helpful for understanding how a task can evoke a focal construct.

Ready to see some design patterns?

Here is a list of design patterns organized by various non-cognitive constructs.

13 Mar, 15

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