Friday, November 8, 2013

Assessing: OF & FOR Learning

“When the cook tastes the soup, that’s formative assessment; when the customer tastes the soup, that’s summative assessment.” - Paul Black

How often are your learners playing the role of the chef and how often are they playing the role of the patron?

The CISD Learning Framework (Ch. 5, Sect. 1) describes formative assessment as assessment for learning. "Assessments used for formative purposes must entail sufficient breadth, depth and cognitive rigor to promote a deeper level of understanding...for the improvement of learning.” The Learning Framework explains that assessments being used for summative purposes provide a “...means for the measurement of learning, effectiveness of instruction and the alignment of the curriculum.”

Learning Progressions
Real world
Learning Goals and Criteria for Success
Descriptive Feedback
Tied to TEKS or objectives
Self- and Peer-Assessment
Include learning outcomes and soft skills
Collaboration - Educators are Learners and Learners are Educators
Evidence of the learner’s Higher Order Thinking Skills


Please reflect on the following questions:

How are these attributes evidenced in your formative assessments? In your summative assessments? Which attribute needs the most growth and attention in your own experiences and how do you plan to support this growth?


  1. Great video!
    It would also be helpful to share specific examples of formative assessment and how they were used. Could others here share some of their most successful examples? I would love to know!

    I'm learning this is also helpful in the library! I am using self-assessment, too. Sometimes it's a checklist to verify skill proficiency (example: finding fiction and nonfiction in the library).
    Sometimes it is a question. Sometimes it is use of hand signals. Sometimes it is a drawing. Sometimes it is just listening!

    Assessment needn't be murky or formal, and it can be helpful for more than just showing progress on a concept. It can help the educator get to know the learner -- and that can help in ANY subject.

    --Cynthia Alaniz

    1. Cynthia, I love the way you are using self-assessment in the library in simple, quick formats. I think sometimes we think that the formative assessment needs to be a pre-prepared assessment when the use of hand signals can give you the feedback you are looking for. Here is a link to some educator examples of how they implemented formative assessments and how they followed through with the feedback.

    2. Polly!! Thank you for sharing some of the ideas and information from the poster session that we had a couple weeks ago. We have some amazing things happening on all of our campuses. I have heard a lot of positive feedback on how educators were able to collaborate with each other at the session and gain some new ideas!!

  2. The video gave me goosebumps! It is so cool to hear about our educators assessment beliefs! We have SO MANY talented and hard working educators in our district!

  3. I used in the library this week for a quick pre-assessment before discussing with 8th graders....worked well....let me know that most learners were familiar with, so I didn't have to spend so much time on the basic nuts-and-bolts of the site....and I could move on to address their specific needs more quickly.

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. Great video! Ongoing assessment to mastery; that's what it's all about. I'm using with 6th ELAR tomorrow and I can't wait to see how it goes!

  6. Love seeing all our CMS East educators in the video!

  7. Awesome video! I liked seeing all the CMS East educators talk about assessments to mastery!!!!