Student Assessments

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Student Assessments by Mind Map: Student Assessments

1. Diagnostic

1.1. "Diagnostic assessment is a type of assessment which examines what a student knows and can do prior to a learning program being implemented."

1.1.1. Advantages: diagnostic assessments are useful for both students and teachers establish benchmarks at the beginning of instruction, and monitor progress thereafter.

1.1.2. Disadvantages: there are no clear disadvantages of diagnostic assessment, except that it cannot realistically be used on its own. It needs to be combined with some other form of assessment to provide final feedback.

1.1.3. Example: a K-W-L chart is used to assess students' knowledge of colonial Africa before reading the text, and referred back to during and after reading the text.

1.2. AFL: as an assessment that precedes instructional content, diagnostic assessment can provide assessment for learning that allows students to measure and reflect on their own progress.

2. Formative

2.1. "Formative assessment refers to a wide variety of methods that teachers use to conduct in-process evaluations of student comprehension, learning needs, and academic progress during a lesson, unit, or course."

2.1.1. Advantages: formative assessments allow teachers to continually monitor student progress by checking understanding throughout the learning process. They can be combined with any number of other assessment techniques.

2.1.2. Disadvantages: as Stiggins points out, formative assessment can leave the learner out of the assessment process.

2.1.3. Example: students write brief summaries of chapters of Things Fall Apart as entry tickets to class.

2.2. AOL: "formative assessment is about providing teachers with evidence, assessment FOR learning is about informing students about themselves."

3. Summative

3.1. "Summative assessments are used to evaluate student learning, skill acquisition, and academic achievement at the conclusion of a defined instructional period—typically at the end of a project, unit, course, semester, program, or school year."

3.1.1. Advantages: summative assessments can be the simplest and least time-consuming methods of assessment - for example, multiple-choice tests can be graded very quickly, or even by computer. Although standardized testing is often criticized, it is perhaps the most effective means of ensuring students are assessed on their own work, and preparing them for other tests they may face in life (college, law/med school, etc.)

3.1.2. Disadvantages: summative assessments are one size fits all approach that put many students at a disadvantage. Standardized testing does not prepare students for most of the challenges they will face in their working lives, and often results in teachers spending considerable amounts of time teaching the test.

3.1.3. Example: students write a graded essay after reading Things Fall Apart.

3.2. AOL: summative assessment is the most traditional form of assessment that measures academic achievement by performance on a task at the end of an instructional module.

4. Performance-based

4.1. "Performance-based assessment is a way for students to demonstrate knowledge, skills, and material that they've learned. Performance-based assessment measures how well students can apply or use what they know, often in real-world situations."

4.1.1. Advantages: there is a wide range of applications of performance-based assessment, with a lot of potential for differentiation. The emphasis on real-world situations in assessment is likely to engage and motivate students more than traditional means of assessment, and may be more useful in the long-term.

4.1.2. Disadvantages: depending on the kind of performance-based assessment it may be more challenging for the teacher to provide fair and accurate assessments of each and every student. During group projects, in particular, it may be hard to gauge individual student contributions.

4.1.3. Example: students role play a court trial over the main character's behavior in the text. They must debate the consequences of his actions and argue for his innocence or guilt.

4.2. AFL: Again, this kind of assessment CAN provide AFL if it is combined with self-reflection, reviewing, and feedback.

5. High-stakes

5.1. "A high-stakes test is any test used to make important decisions about students, educators, schools, or districts, most commonly for the purpose of accountability—i.e., the attempt by federal, state, or local government agencies and school administrators to ensure that students are enrolled in effective schools and being taught by effective teachers."

5.1.1. Advantages: the current emphasis on standardized testing is the consequence of a desire for more accountability in education. The idea of measuring schools' and students' success by objective and quantifiable standards is good, in theory.

5.1.2. Disadvantages: high-stakes testing puts enormous pressure on teachers and students, which is bad for education (teaching the test replaces better educational practices) and for their mental wellbeing.

5.1.3. Example: students must write a timed essay on Things Fall Apart during their end of year exam

5.2. AOL: high-stakes testing is a kind of summative assessment, which is also an assessment of learning.

6. Portfolio

6.1. "Portfolio assessment is an evaluation tool used to document student learning through a series of student-developed artifacts. Considered a form of authentic assessment, it offers an alternative or an addition to traditional methods of grading and high stakes exams."

6.1.1. Advantages: portfolios allow teachers and students to track progress from module to module, reviewing and reflecting on goals and standards throughout the year. Students will be motivated by adding to their portfolio and seeing evidence of their progress, and a portfolio could tell universities and employers much more about a student than grades alone.

6.1.2. Disadvantages: there are few disadvantages to utilizing student portfolios, although, where it is used as a replacement to standardized testing, this may place more of a burden on the teacher. Reviewing portfolio contents with students is a task that might require significant time from teachers.

6.1.3. Example: students produce an essay on the novel which is reviewed and revised with feedback from the teacher. It is then added to their portfolio.

6.2. AFL: portfolios can provide AFL if they are developed with active student participation and self-reflection.

7. Authentic

7.1. "Authentic assessment is an evaluation process that involves multiple forms of performance measurement reflecting the student’s learning, achievement, motivation, and attitudes on instructionally-relevant activities."

7.1.1. Advantages: authentic assessments have many benefits over traditional summative assessments. They are more easily differentiated for student needs and can provide more fair opportunities for assessment. The idea of authenticity is tied to the real-life applications of knowledge that are likely to be more intrinsically motivating and effective in preparing students for their working lives.

7.1.2. Disadvantages: the theories behind authentic assessment are excellent, but in practice there are many challenges to consider. In contrast with summative assessments like standardized testing, grading students objectively may be significantly harder. Measuring individual student contributions - even guaranteeing that students are producing their own work - could be a problem.

7.1.3. Example: students produce a website on the causes and effects of colonialism, with analysis of the text, historical background, and related modern day issues.

7.2. AFL: various kinds of authentic assessment CAN provide assessment for learning - though it should not be taken for granted that they necessarily always do.

8. Self-assessment

8.1. "Self-assessment requires students to reflect on their own work and judge how well they have performed in relation to the assessment criteria."

8.1.1. Advantages: self- and perr-assessment encourage self-direction and reflection, and motivate students to engage with, revise, and refine their work. They can also be incorporated into various other assessment systems (e.g. students assess their own work before submitting a summative assessment)

8.1.2. Disadvantages: students may struggle to evaluate their own or peers' work objectively. Self- or peer-assessment are not enough to ensure that standards are met, and will have to be supplemented with other, more authoritative forms of assessment.

8.1.3. Example: students assess their own essays on the text according to a grading rubric.

8.2. AFL: self- and peer-assessment provide some of the best opportunities for AFL, given the amount of reflection and evaluation required from students to inform their own learning process.

9. Peer-assessment

9.1. "Peer assessment involves students taking responsibility for assessing the work of their peers against set assessment criteria."

9.2. Example: students deliver a presentation on the abolition of the slave trade and assess their peers' presentations using a rubric.

10. Assessments of learning (AOL)

11. Assessments for learning (AFL)

12. Grade 10 English Language Arts All examples for a unit on Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe