08 September 2013
Educational assessment is a formal attempt to determine students’ status with respect to educational variables of interest. Until the last decade, essay, multiple-choice, true-false paper and pencil tests were the most common and were typically found in quizzes, end-of-unit tests, midterms, and final exams. Today we use the term assessment instead of testing to reflect the fact that teachers also use informal testing, such as oral questioning to check for student learning. Teachers need to know about assessment for the following reasons:
To diagnose students’ strengths and weaknesses. Often referred to as pre-assessment and used to evaluate skills already mastered and avoid redundancy. To monitor students’ progress. Used to determine if the students are making satisfactory progress. To assign grades to students. Providing evidence necessary to make sensible student-by-student appraisals. To determine instructional effectiveness. Compare the pretest and posttest results for indication of student progress.
When assessment is integrated with instruction it informs teachers about what activities and assignments will be most useful, what level of teaching is most appropriate, and how summative assessments provide diagnostic information. Assessment that is fair, leading to valid inferences with a minimum if error, is a series of measures that show student understanding through multiple methods. Understanding how general, fundamental assessment principles and ideas can be used to enhance student learning and teacher effectiveness. Assessment is mutually beneficial to both the students and the teacher, in that it reinforces the student’s grasp of the course content and sharpens the teaching skills to continually motivate the students. Teachers must be able to interpret test scores of students for parents as to what scores reflect their child’s learning capacity. Reliability represents...
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