Monday, November 26, 2012

Assessment Professional Development Guide (511)

(from Edutopia)
Why is Assessment Important?

·       Important in checking for student understanding

·       Can make changes and modify accordingly

·       "Are we teaching what we think we are teaching?"

·       "Are students learning what they are supposed to be learning?"

·       "Is there a way to teach the subject better, thereby promoting better learning?"

·       When assessment works best, it does the following:

Provides diagnostic feedback

  • What is the student's knowledge base?
  • What is the student's performance base?
  • What are the student's needs?
  • What has to be taught?

Helps educators set standards

  • What performance demonstrates understanding?
  • What performance demonstrates knowledge?
  • What performance demonstrates mastery?

Evaluates progress

  • How is the student doing?
  • What teaching methods or approaches are most effective?
  • What changes or modifications to a lesson are needed to help the student?

Relates to a student's progress

  • What has the student learned?
  • Can the student talk about the new knowledge?
  • Can the student demonstrate and use the new skills in other projects?

Motivates performance
For student self-evaluation:

  • Now that I'm in charge of my learning, how am I doing?
  • Now that I know how I'm doing, how can I do better?
  • What else would I like to learn?

For teacher self-evaluation:

  • What is working for the students?
  • What can I do to help the students more?
  • In what direction should we go next?


What are some types of assessments?

·        Learning requires problem solving to build mental models

·        What should be assessed:

o   learner's ability to organize, structure, and use information in context to solve complex problems.

·        Standardized tests

·        Common core

o   Difficult to assess because evidence-based.

o   Important to ask:

§  Is it portfolios?

§  If portfolios are a part of evidence-based assessment, what else is necessary?

§  Reflections? Work samples? Best work?

·        Alternative assessments

o   Examples of these measurements are open-ended questions, written compositions, oral presentations, projects, experiments, and portfolios of student work.

·        Authentic assessment can include many of the following:

·        Observation

·        Essays

·        Interviews

·        Performance tasks

·        Exhibitions and demonstrations

·        Portfolios

·        Journals

·        Teacher-created tests

·        Rubrics

·        Self- and peer-evaluation


How do Rubrics Help?

·        scoring guidelines that can be used to provide consistency in evaluating student work.

·        let students know what is expected of them, and demystify grades

·        opportunity to do self-assessment to reflect on the learning process

·        teachers can grade project- or performance-based assessments consistently from student-to-student

·        measure the quality of a body of work

·        Team Rubrics

o   guideline that lets each team member know what is expected of him or her.

    • Shows the quantitative value of the behaviors or actions.
    • For instance:
      • Did the person participate in the planning process?
      • How involved was each member?
      • Was the team member's work to the best of his or her ability?

·        Project Rubrics

o   lists the requirements for the completion of a project-based-learning lesson.

    • For instance:
      • What is the quality of the work?
      • How do you know the content is accurate?
      • How well was the presentation delivered?
      • How well was the presentation designed?
      • What was the main idea?

·        Sample Rubrics

·        websites that offer free tools to generate your own rubrics:

o   Rubistar

o   rubric section of the Authentic Assessment Toolbox, by Dr. Jon Mueller of North Central College



More Resources on Comprehensive Assessment:

High School



Ohio Dept. of Education website:

“What are some types of classroom assessment and what student evidence can they generate?”

·        Closed tasks

o   Multiple-choice

o   True/false

o   Fill-in-the blanks

o   Solve (w/o showing process)

o   Useful for:

§  assessing content-based standards

§  assessing of knowledge, facts, skills or concepts

§  takes less time

·        Open tasks and constructed responses

o   Tasks with different possible answers

o   Different possible processes

o   Useful for:

§  Use of processes or strategies

§  Ability to interpret info

§  Ability to apply info

§  Reasoning

§  Ability to communicate thinking

·        Performance tasks

o   Integrative tasks that yield specific products

o   Authentic assessments

o   Extended projects

o   Useful for:

§  Assessing ability to organize, synthesize and apply information and skills

§  Use of resources

·        Informal assessments

o   Teacher observations

o   Teacher checklists

o   Conversations or interviews

o   Useful for:

§  Process or strategy use

§  Reasoning

§  Understanding a topic or concept

§  Ability to communicate and collaborate

·        Self-assessment or reflection

o   Student journals or reflection logs

o   Student checklists

o   Group reflection activities

o   Daily/weekly self evals

o   Teacher-student interviews

o   Useful for:

§  Developing student awareness of strengths and weaknesses (metacognitive skills)

§  Show student process and thinking/reasoning skills

§  Reveals student disposition towards topic or learning

§  Helps identify student goals

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