1. Benchmark (interim) assessment

Interim assessments are often carried out at numerous intervals throughout the school year and provide ongoing data regarding a student’s performance. By carrying out regular assessments, teachers can monitor a student’s performance and pick up on any issues as they arise.

Although an interim assessment indicates how a student’s summative assessment will go at the end of the year, it also ensures that issues can be addressed and resolved before the end of the term or school year.

  1. Diagnostic pre-assessment

These assessments may be carried out when a child enters a new grade or before a class moves on to a particular topic. A diagnostic assessment focuses on what the student already knows, where their strengths and weakness lie, and what skills they already possess. When teachers have this information, they can determine where the student is starting from and their existing baseline. This data allows teachers to set realistic goals for individual students and classes.

  1. Formative assessment

Formative assessments occur during a task and allow the teacher to confirm that the student has understood the instructions and is working appropriately. These assessments are often carried out informally and may occur numerous times during a specific task.

  1. Criterion-referenced Assessment

When carrying out a criterion-referenced assessment, teachers will evaluate a group of students about one specific goal or objective. This allows teachers to see how many students from a class or grade are reaching the expected goal and, if necessary, to take steps to increase attainment.

  1. Norm-referenced assessment

This type of assessment involves comparing students to another group. A student’s grades may be compared against the national average, for example, or against their peers in school. While this can help determine a child’s performance, norm-referenced assessments have limitations. Suppose a disability prevents a child from performing at the expected norm-referenced assessment level. In that case, this should not detract from his or her achievements about their expected attainment levels. If norm-referenced assessments are used, teachers should take steps to ensure students are not demotivated by a relatively poor grade or disappointing performance.

  1. Summative assessment

When teachers carry out a summative assessment, they examine the student’s performance after completing a task or project. This ensures teachers can evaluate the student’s performance and determine whether the pupil has achieved the expected results. When used in conjunction with formative assessments, teachers can identify points at which the student went off task or failed to understand instructions. The teacher can then address these issues in future classes.


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