Assessment

How do you typically assess your students? your teaching? other learners (e.g. teachers)? How have your assessment practices changed over the years? How have they changed in your school? District?  What research do you use to support your assessment practices? What evidence do you have that indicates that your assessment practices help students achieve and be successful? What have been the challenges in changing your assessment practices?

What work do we still have to do as instructional leaders in this area to ensure that students are receiving the best assessment practices in our buildings/districts?

Assessment has changed over the years.  Being in education for 17 years I have witnessed a change in assessment policies and practices in schools, divisions, teachers and with my own practices.  Assessment practices and policies are a hot topic in the educational world. Parents, teachers, administrators all have opinions on the topic. Educators in Alberta may remember the Edmonton Teacher who was fired for breaking “no zero policy.”  

As an administrator that still has the pleasure of teaching my classroom assessment strategies include a variety of formative and summative assessments.  The majority of my is formative and can include, classroom observations, conversations, quizzes, assignments that are designed to assess understanding and what key outcomes or stands need further development.  Formative assessment in my class is generally not used as part of a student mark with the majority of the mark coming from summative writing, quizzes and tests/exams.

I assess my teaching by reflecting regularly on my practices and am constantly looking to build upon my instruction and assessment practices.  In the past I have had my students complete surveys at the end of the year.

My assessment practices have changed over the years with so much more being done online with tools such as Google Docs, FreshGrade Portfolios or Google Classroom.  My summative assessment practices have not changed much, but I have become better at providing accommodations for students that require it for those assessments.

I have used a lot of Rick Wormeli’s research when it comes to assessment practices and policies.  Marzano and Tomlinson are some authors I have read to gather information regarding assessment practices and they have had an impact on assessment techniques.  

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