Vernier Science Education - June  2024


Forums / Evaluation and Assessment / Make-up tests

Evaluation and Assessment

Make-up tests

Author Post
Mary Bigelow Mary Bigelow 10275 Points

There's been a lot of conversations about students re-taking exams/tests in a topic here, but I'm interested in some strategies for make-up tests--when students are absent on the day of the test. Do students make an appt with you to complete it? (before/after school, a study hall, or during the class period)? Do you give it to them the next class period? Do you use the same test or another version? Do you offer an alternate assessment, such as a project? Does anyone offer an online version? Other ideas? Thanks.

Emily Faulconer Faulconer 5755 Points

I use all short answer for make-up tests. My normal tests have a mix of open and closed questions ... with 60-70% of the points in closed questions (MC, T/F, fill in the blank, matching, etc.) and about 30-40% in open questions (calculations and short answer). 

I definitely do not use the same test as that is an unfair advantage ... they can easily ask what was on the test! 


Samantha McCubbins Samantha Johnson 895 Points

At my school we are required to allow our students to retake any test they failed up to a passing (70) grade. So rather than have a bunch of students coming before and after school to make up or retake tests, we just build it in to the schedule. So typically one week after we take a test we will have a retake day. Any students who need to make up or want to retake the test can do so then. The other students typically have independent work to do. Those students who were testing will then have to do the work as homework. While it does take away from active class time, it does limit the number of students having to come before or after school to make up tests.

Gabriela Gutierrez Gabriela Gutierrez 1190 Points

It's sometimes difficult to plan ahead a make up exam that can fit in with the rest of the schedule. For every exam, I would suggest have an alternative make up exam from the original that would still be equal to the original. In order to not take away a day of teaching, accommodate the students schedule along with your own. Exams serve the purpose to test the students knowledge and understanding of the topic, a project or make up work is not going to be effective. As the teacher it is going to be difficult to determine whether or not the student knows the lesson without the exam. I would also suggest a small incentive for the students to not miss an exam such as an extra credit question on the original exam but not the make up.

Jonty Coco Jonty Coco 355 Points

I normally allow a student to make up a missed test on the next day that they are present.  They are required to catch up the lesson that they miss while testing on their own.  I, on my free period will explain anything that they don't understand or are having difficulties with at that time.  I like to offer them the opportunity to be tested while the information is still fresh in their young minds.  If they should happen to be out for a longer period of time, then I will make accommodations for them to insure that they have adequate information in order to learn the specific lesson or lessons that they have missed.

Alex Kinder Alex Kinder 1195 Points

Any thoughts on students who have been absent for an extended period of time (week or more)? I have a couple students who went on a trip to Japan as part of an exchange program, and have been out for 10 days (plus 10 more days for spring break).

Alex Kinder Alex Kinder 1195 Points

Any thoughts on students who have been absent for an extended period of time (week or more)? I have a couple students who went on a trip to Japan as part of an exchange program, and have been out for 10 days (plus 10 more days for spring break).

Steven Autieri Steven Autieri 844 Points

I developed a test retake policy utilized amongst my department members now. Students have to complete a self-reflection form before they are allowed to retake summatives.

Pamela Auburn Pamela Auburn 68625 Points

Steven I love this idea. Students are not very good at judging their own learning. Tools that can help them will develop their skills and ability to become self regulated learners. There are huge benefits to this both in and out of school

Rebecca Falin Rebecca Falin 71530 Points

I work for an public early college STEM school.  My school uses a standards-based mastery grading system, so re-takes are mandatory.  In order to retake assessments (they are new tests and not the same one they did not master) students must have completed all work (assignments, homework, etc) for the unit at an acceptable level (85% or above for me or they redo it) and completed a remediation assignment for the standards they did not master in the assessment.  We also contact parents and remind them of our after school office hours and encourage them to have students attend.  In our school students can retest up to three times, but its higher stakes than most programs.  Students who do not have mastery (>90%, A) or near master (>80%, B) for all "power standards"  (12 maximum power standards which usually consist of a cluster of content standards) do not pass the course and must retake it.  I realize that most teachers don't have the option of failing students that do not reach a B level; students must choose to attend our school and accept this level of rigor.   Steven, I love your idea of a reflection.  For final remediation at the end of a semester I typically have students create their own remediation plan and then I meet with them about it.  I think a reflection at this point might be a more useful tool. When I worked in a regular public school I did allow retakes and typically required students to have all work turned in before being allowed to retest the first time.  After that there was additional work or attendance at a work session required in order to retest again.  I didn't limit retests, but they had to be on the student's time and could not be done during class.  That tended to ensure that students put in the effort needed to reach mastery.

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