Any educational system requires a particular approach to assessment, especially when you are entering college. This is why your higher school certificate matters.
What do we mean by that? Let’s understand the concepts:
- Evaluation is the determination of the value or significance of something.
- Assessment is a process which ends with an evaluation, it helps to identify shortcomings, give constructive feedback, see the results of learning activities.
There are two types of assessment: formative and summative. Formative assessment is an evaluation by the teacher and the students of their own learning as a result of the previous lesson. Summative assessment is a system of knowledge assessment based on formalized state exams and other. And it’s helpful not only for students but also for those who want to learn strategies for betting at a 22Bet login website or studying new languages as an adult.
Let’s imagine three young lemon trees. Summative evaluation compares them to each other in terms of external indicators: trunk height, brightness of leaves and fruit. Formative evaluation, on the other hand, examines the internal composition: the taste of the fruit and its qualities.
Formative assessment aims to actually improve the quality of education, not to give marks for a tick. Therefore, it’s often anonymous and is not supported by grades.
Here are a few key characteristics of formative assessment:
- It’s embedded in the teaching and learning process.
- It involves discussing educational goals with students.
- makes the student the subject of educational and assessment activity.
- Provides feedback between the participants of the educational process.
- Helps students outline the next steps in their learning.
- Involves both teacher and students in the overall process.
- Helps students understand learning standards.
- Gives the student tools for self-assessment of his or her results.
We have already realized that formative assessment brings more real benefits. But certain conditions need to be created for it to emerge. In 2010, assessment expert Joan Herman drew the Assessment Triangle, which has the three pillars of quality assessment:
- Learning Goals – The learning goals that the teacher sets should be clear and explicit. For example, by the end of the lesson the student will have learned to solve speed problems.
- Assessment Tasks – They are created specifically to reflect the learning objectives, not the other way around. Assessment tasks, from those that are completed during the lesson to the annual final results, should be aligned with the learning goal.
- Now that there are clear goals and agreed-upon assessment objectives, assessment results must be interpreted accordingly. Both student and teacher should have the same understanding of the criteria for success: which way to go to correct errors identified in the assessment process.
The success of formative assessment is confirmed by statistics.
Summative assessment is formed on the basis of curricula and state documents that spell out the criteria for what a student should know. Each country has its own curriculum and grading system. For example, in Slovakia, Poland, and Croatia the grading system ranges from 1 to 6 points, while Belgium and Ireland have a 100-point system.
Is there an international system of summative assessment? There are several global tests designed to compare students’ knowledge between nations. For example, TIMSS and PIRLS, which appeared in the 1960s, and later, in the 2000s, PISA.
Interesting Methods for Different Evaluation Systems
The Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) has suggested the following techniques for language teachers as part of formative assessment practices:
Observe how students use language in speaking and writing.
- Use visual aids for greater visibility.
- Keep notes of observations.
- Demonstrate to students how language can be used in their lives.
- Have dialogues and conversations in language.
- Give students the opportunity to analyze their own activities.
There is one interesting method, Data-Based Decision Making (DBDM). It involves a teacher or school adjusting the curriculum and its goals based on analysis of current summative assessment data (accountable – exams, quizzes, and more). Is it effective? There was a study in the Netherlands on the implementation of DBDM for elementary schools. Schools passed math test results that students solved. School staff received training on how to use the method (analyzing data, adjusting instruction, building learning goals, and establishing a culture of trust and collaboration with students). The resulting effect was almost an additional month of training.
Assessment for learning (AfL) is dedicated to monitoring the quality of learning and providing ongoing feedback from various members of the educational process. AfL conducted an experiment. Teachers were first given a course on formative assessment, and then they were given the freedom to choose educational tools. The key one was a whiteboard on which the student wrote the answer to the teacher’s question. Thus, the teacher could track the results already during the lesson and not at the end with the handed in notebooks, as before. At the end of the study, the results of the groups where the teachers had been trained were higher by 1 point. Interestingly, the students in the experimental group did much better on the unusual problems in the test. They managed to find non-standard solutions.