Best of 2015 Assessment Style

2015-03-14_OhNoLogo22-abby32015 was a big year for Oh No. In our first almost year of chatting assessment with you all we’ve written 54 posts, reached over 2,000 of you, and learned a lot along the way (like, posting 3x/week is a bit much for everyone…). I love end of the year time when all kinds of media go into review mode, highlighting big moments of the year. So in kind, voila

Oh No‘s Most Popular Posts of 2015:

4-stay course3-yikyak assess eval what doing 2-Assess Eval Research

And our most popular post of 2015 :::drum roll:::

1 - Incentiv Res Curr

Thank you Matt Kwiatkowski for your post!

THANK YOU so much for your readership this year! We are SO thankful for your support and look forward to talking more assessment with you all in 2016!

Outside of the Oh No-sphere, check out my 2 favorite year-end reviews:

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Assessment on the Road: Boise State

Images of Idaho

My summer of travel is sadly coming to an end. I just got back from one of my last destinations: Idaho! (Boise, to be exact) It was my inaugural trip and I’m happy to report back what so many already know: Idaho is beautiful. (Thanks Wear Boise for the great beard image!)

Being the lover of colleges and campuses that I am, I had to visit Boise State University while I was there. By all of the extra signage around campus, clearly I was there on a summer orientation day (which I love because I love orientation).

Boise Career Center welcome

Once again, the Career Center of this new-to-me campus grabbed my attention. I REALLY loved their graphic representation of their career learning goals. What a great way to be transparent about and engage students in what goals the Career Center has for students. I think that is a pivotal step to students actually successfully learning and achieving those goals!

CC make it count detail

Another data visualization from Boise State that I loved was through their admission office. Here’s what I love about it:

It’s simple. Easy graphics, consistent color palette. Clean.

BSU data brochure5

It has numbers AND text. They bring life and strength to each other.

BSU data brochure

There is lots of different kinds of data. I think more and more the public wants LOTS of data all at once so that they can quickly skim and find what is most meaningful to them.

BSU dad brochure2

It’s a nice size. Folds up as a small brochure (6″x3″) and folds out as a small poster (18″x12″).

BSU data brochure3

It’s a nice paper weight. I know, this sounds weird, but if you’re going to be printing nice graphics, you want to have nice paper on which to put them.

Thanks for the great visit Boise State U! Until next time!

Assessment on the Go!

2015-03-14_OhNoLogo22-abby3Summer is busy! Between attending conferences, catching up on planning items, and (hopefully) a little R&R, people are here, there, and everywhere. What’s a data head to do?

As you know, my summer goals include all things data visualizations. In my search for learning and inspiration, I stumbled across the podcast Data Stories. With my 32-minute commute to work everyday, listening to hosts Moritz and Enrico on Data Stories is perfect. I first got hooked on an episode with Miriah Meyer about exploratory data viz tools. Imagine talking about data visualizations, data tools, and methods with your friends – that’s Data Stories. Was Miriah’s research waaaaay beyond me?? Yes. BUT it was so enjoyable to listen their banter AND it gave me lot of ideas, so I was drawn back to DS for more.

data-stories_original

Here’s why I like it:

  • Data + friendship = my favorite
  • Cataloged points in each episode, so you can pick and choose the parts of an individual episode you want to listen to – just visit their website. Some of the episode topics are over my head, so this is a useful tool!
  • Learn, get inspired, and brainstorm ideas all while on your way to work
  • Resources galore – they always provide related and discussed links from each episode on their website – very handy!
  • You can subscribe (read: automatic updates! no thinking invovled!)

Go ahead, peruse the Data Stories archives, get onto your favorite podcast app, and binge! Next in my queue are about data art and data journalism. The perfect complement to a summer on the go.

See you next week!

Visualization Mapping

2015-03-14_OhNoLogo22-abby3I’m on an Edward Tufte kick – you’ll see this throughout the summer from me. I went to Edward Tufte’s one day course a month ago (I HIGHLY recommend it for anyone interested in doing data visualizations). One newer thing that Tufte showcased was an app he designed with Adam Schwartz called ImageQuilts (IQ). It’s an app that works with Chrome. (After you download the app) When you Google Image Search something you can click the “IQ” button next to your browser IQ app button and have it make a collage (“quilt”) of the images. Very cool. You can change each image’s size, pick what goes into the collage, use grayscale, etc. I’ve used it to quickly map ideas for how to best visualize data about student learning, or how to best use Excel 2013, or to make a visual list of the best task apps (it’s a summer goal). Instead of having a written list of ideas, I now have a visual list of ideas. Not to mention, IQ makes great quick images for presentations. IQ has been helpful in my quest to do better and more compelling visualizations with my data.

Here’s *one I made of my summer travels (can you tell where I’m headed this summer???? I’ll give you a hint: there are 5 locations total):

Abby travels image

You can download ImageQuilts in the Chrome Web Store. It’s free! There are easy instructions on the ImageQuilt website (as well as some examples). So go ahead you assessment geeks and play around with IQ and see how it helps you. I’d love to see what you make!

*Quick disclaimer: I created none of these images. They were gathered by Google Image Search. I take no credit for any individual image.

Data Viz

It’s FRIDAY! And it’s SUMMER! Which is a winning combination. Enjoy this excellent short video from PBS about data visualizations:

Summer Schedule – We hope you’re all enjoying your summer. I’m jet setting left-and-right, and Mark is orienting new wolverines – FUN! So for the summer season, we’ll be posting once a week. We’ll get back in to the swing of more frequent postings in August. Have a great weekend! See you next week!