Archive: Book Beat Live! Uncovering Student Ideas with Formative Assessment Probes, December 15, 2021

Formative assessment is a systematic process of collecting evidence about students’ thinking and progress toward a learning goal to inform instruction while simultaneously promoting conceptual learning. It happens throughout the learning process. It is assessment for learning rather than assessment of learning; and sometimes it is assessment as learning.

In this session Page Keeley, the author of NSTA’s Uncovering Student Ideas in Science series, will share how diagnostic probes reveal students’ thinking about core disciplinary ideas and then become formative when data from students’ responses are used to make informed instructional decisions. The session will address: 

  • Why students’ ideas matter. All students bring ideas to their learning, many which develop outside of school. Explore where these ideas come from and why it is important for all students’ ideas to be surfaced and honored, regardless of whether they are right or wrong.
  • What probes are. Examine how two types of probes, concept-based and phenomenon based, are constructed and what they reveal about students’ thinking. Learn how the teacher notes can build your understanding of the research on students’ ideas and effective response activities for addressing common misunderstandings.
  • How to use probes. Learn how probes are used effectively to elicit students’ initial ideas, launch into sense-making, and revisited to provide evidence of conceptual understanding after they have had the opportunity to learn. Applications to two- and three-dimensional learning will be addressed.

All individuals receive a certificate of participation and 100 NSTA activity points for attending the live seminar and completing the end-of-program survey. A certificate of participation is not awarded for watching the recorded version of the program.

We invite you to register for upcoming web seminars at NSTA.

View the Archive Video

To view the presentation slides from the web seminar and related resources, visit the resource collection. Continue discussing this topic in the community forums.

Below are comments from individuals who attended the seminar:

  • "I am very energized to try these things with all levels to get more real formative assessment as well as work on constructed responses"
  • "I enjoyed how clear the information was and how easy it was to understand the use of probes and how to use this format for NGSS."
  • "I just ordered these probes for our professional learning library. It was wonderful to see Page walking through the steps to implement the probes."

A certificate of attendance was deposited into participants' account page for completing the evaluation form at the end of the program.

For more information contact: [email protected]

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