Rethinking Assessment Practices

With the new semester beginning, many of us are thinking about how we will assess our students’ progress over the next 14 weeks. What information will we include on our midterms and final exams? What types of assignments and projects will we ask our students to complete?

A recent Faculty Focus article suggests that this planning process should also involve a consideration of the assumptions that ground our current assessment practices and some of the alternative assessment options that we can use to improve learning. Although the suggestion mentioned in the article of only using the final exam or assignment score in determining the course grade may be a bit radical, there is merit in considering how low-stakes, ungraded tasks can be used throughout the term to help both the instructor and student assess progress and adapt practices to improve learning. Looking at assessment as a means of enhancing student learning as well as a way of evaluating progress helps us broaden our teaching practice to include both assessment of learning (summative) and assessment for learning (formative).

A Challenge to Current Grading Practices by Maryellen Weimer

If you would like to learn more about the benefits of using formative assessment and some easy formative assessment activities you can implement in your course this semester, please join TCDC and EdTech on September 22nd Offering Choice in Assessment from 9:30-11:30.

A similar workshop (Ongoing Assessment for Learning Improvement) was held earlier. Contact if you are interested in having that one held again.