What is ASTI STEM Academy (ASA)?
ASA is a portal to help students evaluate their current levels of understanding of a particular topic via regular self-assessment. The self-assessment would be in the form of a quiz that would be uploaded into the ASA website. The students would sit for the quiz on a regular basis and marks would be given to the student to be able to assess their current levels of understanding. The process can be facilitated by their teachers and/or parents.
The main objective of this quiz is to give an opportunity to the student to test their understanding of a particular subject in Science and Mathematics that they have learned in school online.
The need for regular assessment in STEM subjects is important since these subjects are learned incrementally. So, for example, if a student does not understand a particular idea or concept in Science or Mathematics well, he/she may have problems understanding further more complex ideas or concepts. So it is important that the learner understand the simpler concept before moving on.
History of ASA
With Covid-19 virus infections is a major problem throughout the world in 2020, We are still trying to adapt and adopt new normal that will keep us safe and yet functioning. The education is one of the most impacted sector by the pandemic. This is mostly due to the loss of face to face interactions between the teachers and the students. Malaysian schools have been closed most of 2020 with perhaps only about 4 months of learning in schools taking place.
To overcome this problem of students not being able to come to schools, the education sector in Malaysia has opted for online learning or e-learning with technology and devices as the preferred method of communication and instruction to replace face-to-face learning.
However, we have received many feedbacks from parents, teachers and students, who are not able to learn due to lack of devices, good internet connection or conducive learning environment at home. Furthermore, Peer-to-peer learning – one of the most important method of learning among students has been reduced to almost zero in 2020. Thus, no matter how effective the online learning was, the lack of student-to-student interaction which is an integral component of the learning process has also made learning difficult.
We envisage new sets of problems to come as the schools are reopening in 2021. There is an urgent need for students to assess their current levels of understanding and progress in their studies. Thus, in 2021, we have launched the ASTI Recovery Projects to tackle these issue.
ASA is a project started under ASTI’s Recovery Projects (ARP)recognising the need for regular and constant self-assessment to help; the learners, the teachers and the guardians/parents measure the levels of understanding of their lessons. The result of the self-assessment can help the relevant stakeholders gauge their level or understanding for the specific subject or topic and then come up with a strategy to develop their learning needs.