Carolina Biological OSE - March 2024


Forums / Evaluation and Assessment / Formative assessment

Evaluation and Assessment

Formative assessment

Author Post
Rebecca Montgomery Rebecca Montgomery 600 Points

Hello! My name is Becca Montgomery and I'm a preservice elementary teacher at Wartburg College. I am looking for recommendations on how you use formative assessment in the classroom. Do you assess students both before and after their learning to track growth? What are your most successful types of formative assessment? Do you keep the questions on formative and summative assessments consistent? I've heard of teachers using the same questions on both assessments so that their students are aware of the learning goals throughout the unit but I would love to hear about other styles of assessment that have worked well in your classrooms. 

Alexandra Bender Alexandra Bender 1548 Points

Hi Becca, thank you for your post because I'm wondering the same thing myself! I'm also a preservice elementary school teacher at FIU. I recently taught two science lessons on metamorphosis and the moon phases. I will say that for both lessons then my questions for the summative and formative assessments were different. Students were aware of the learning goals but I used the formative assessment to keep track of their growth in the learning goals and not the summative assessment. For example, I know exit slips are a great formative assessment because as a teacher then you can see what the student is either thinking after the lesson and what they learned from the lesson, which would relate to the learning goals. I asked my students on the exit slip to give me examples of complete and incomplete metamorphosis and they were not able to before the start of the lesson and then I also asked to name three things that they learned and this helped me see what students learned in regards to the learning goals and this information is really valuable as a teacher. Since then at the end of the lesson you see what the student learned and if there are still any misconceptions that need to be addressed. Another formative assessment I did was put the pictures of the moon phases and then students had to put them in order by color and the pictures were tilted on purpose and I had different answers but to have this in the middle of my lesson helped me track their growth because at the end of the lesson they were able to put the moon phases in the correct order from the most amount of sunlight to least amount of sunlight. Yes, I do assess students before and after because I think as a teacher it's important to keep track of the student's growth and believe me it changes quickly that teachers do need to assess before and after a lesson. Worksheets and exit slips are examples of formative assessment and then the summative assessment would be the data and analysis collected from the science experiement. I hope that helps answer your questions a little bit! 

Latayvia Green Latayvia Green 560 Points

Hi Becca, I'm Latayvia, and I'm a grad student at Voorhees University. Have you considered using metacognition as a type of formative assessment? Metacognition allows a student to assess what they did in class and the reason for doing it. They would respond to a series of questions like: what did you learn today? What did we do? Why did we do it? How can it be applied? What questions do you have?

Emily Faulconer Emily Faulconer 5755 Points

I have done some research on the use of multiple attempts on a summative assessment with automatically-provided feedback. I recall reading about a familiarity effect where students are not likely to self-diagnose errors and the familiarity with identical questions may make them likely re-select a wrong answer. Student access of and application of instructor feedback from the formative assessment would be key in overcoming this if identical questions were used. I wish I could find the research article that explored this. I dug through my files and couldn't put my hands on it. Sorry! 

Yuyu Yaooo Yuyu Yaooo 10 Points

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Talia Kelly Talia Kelly 520 Points

Formative and summative assessments assess different levels of understanding and learning. I think, personally, that using different questions would best allow you to assess the student's level of understanding and knowledge. 

Taylor Hemmerich Taylor Hemmerich 530 Points

Hello Becca! Formative assessment should be used in the classroom to track students understanding along the way. It is used to inform your future instruction by telling you what your students know and what they need more support with. Formative assessment should be done everyday! Do not think of is as a sit down paper and pencil test, there are so many diferent forms of formative assessment. You should asess students before and after learning to track their growth and to make sure they did learn the things that you wanted them to. I would keep the questions consistent between assessments so that your results are from testing the same thing, which will create an accurate picture of growth and understanding.    

Ruthie Brown Ruthie Brown 835 Points

Hello Becca, I am Ruthie Brown, a graduate student at Voorhees University.  I have learned the goal of formative assessment is to monitor students learning to provide ongoing feedback that can be used by teachers to improve their teaching instruction and it helps students to identify their strengths, weaknesses, and target areas that need work.  To target learning outcomes.  I hope this information was helpful feedback to you.

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