Assessment Professional Learning Assessment AS Learning 1
Assessment AS learning:• Occurs when students reflect on and monitor their progress to inform their future learning goals.• It is regularly occurring, formal or informal (e.g. peer feedback buddies, formal self assessment) and helps students take responsibility for their own past and future learning.
It builds metacognition as it involvesstudents in understanding the standardsexpected of them, in setting and monitoringtheir own learning goals, and in developingstrategies for working towards achievingthem. (Because it helps shape learning it is formative assessment.)
“Effective assessment empowers students to ask reflective questions and consider a range of strategies for learning and acting … students move forward in their learning when they can use their personal knowledge to construct meaning, have skills of self-monitoring to realize that they don’t understand something, and have ways of deciding what to do next.” (Lorna Earl 2003, p. 25).
30-second thinkHOW have you organizedassessment AS learning? 5
The purpose of assessment AS learning is to:“ • Increase learner autonomy • Advance understanding of the subject • Elevate the status of student from passive learner to assessor • Involve students in critical reflection • Demonstrate to students the concepts of subjectivity and judgement.”(Hinnett & Thomas, 1999, cited on http://www.ucd.ie/teaching/assess/as9.htm)
Assessment as learning requires that studentstake an active role in their own learning andassessment.To do this they must understand what isexpected of them i.e. the syllabus and yourlearning intentions for them.
The Student’s role is to:• have some responsibility to develop their own learning goals• decide which strategies to use to achieve their goals• monitor their learning goals over time (using reflective & metacognitive thinking, and self assessment tools)• evaluate their achievements.
The Teacher’s Role is to:• help students develop their own specific, manageable and worthwhile learning goals• decide which broad short and longer term learning goals are appropriate for this class and these students• provide structures and processes to support students in thinking reflectively and metacognitively to monitor their goals.
Assessment AS learning strategies include• self-assessment that is free-writing in learning logs• written reflections responding to prompts or probes• oral discussion (with peers and/or the teacher)• using checklists or rubrics• metacognitive self-questioning• using graphic organisers (concept maps, PMI tables)• “traffic lighting” their own (or a peer’s) workEncourage assessment of feelings as well as of thinkingand doing because research shows that emotionalinvolvement makes learning ‘stick’.
“It is very difficult for students to achieve a learning goal unless they understand that goal and can assess what they need to do to reach it. So self-assessment is essential to learning.” (Paul Black et al. 2003, p. 49).
“Traffic light” - where were you:Stopped?Cautious?Goingstraight ahead?
Self-Assessment involves students in• “reflecting on past experience• seeking to remember and understand what took place• attempting to gain a clearer idea of what has been learned and achieved. …• sharing responsibility for the organisation of their work• keeping records of activities undertaken• making decisions about future actions and targets.” (Paul Weeden et al. 2002, p. 73).
Self assessment• can be the best feedback (as students understand what they need to do and are not waiting for teachers to give feedback)• may initially need to be “scaffolded” (e.g. by helping to decode the criteria in the rubrics you create/negotiate)• must focus on the quality (not quantity) of the work - and on constructive criticism• self-monitoring and self-correction can be powerful motivators for improvement.
Rubrics can be useful when:• students assist in the rubric design process• the rubric is used for assessment AS learning purposes by helping students understand what Standards are expected of them• students use the rubric in peer and self assessment• they empower students to become more self- directed in their learning - they understand where they are headed and know how to get there.
Sample prompts for written reflections:“My strength today was …“I feel frustrated when …“I need to find out more about …“I need help with …”“What I can do to improve is …”“My highest priority learning goal now is …” The sentence stems need a short space between them (3 or 4 are enough for any one reflection session).
Peer Assessment can be:• observation (example: of an oral presentation)• conferences or interviews (example: with a‘draft buddy’)• reading written reflections• having email/e-Forum discussion• a learning experience as students see howothers work.You can create protocols to keep peer assessmentrunning smoothly.
Gender matters in self and peer assessmentThere are some gender differences in trends inpeer and self-assessment:• boys tend to be easier on themselves andharder on their peers (a bit too ruthless)• girls tend to be harder on themselves and easier on their peers (a bit too kind) (and this may be compounded in different cultural, religious, and/or ethnic groups).
Self assessment of group working together• Did I encourage another person today?• Did I help “block” a put-down today?• Did I contribute an idea today?• Did I use active listening today?• Did I keep my hands & feet to myself today?• Did I ask a useful question today?
Peer assessment of group working together:• Did we settle quickly today?• Did we keep our voices down today?• Did we keep together today?• Did we actively listen to each other?• Did we concentrate on our tasks?• Did we each have a chance to speak to the whole group today?
When students develop learning goals, think reflectively, self- monitor their learning it isAssessment Assessment AS LearningFOR learning Assessment OF learning 21