another publication by IMAGE asia

Student Assessment: I Got You VS Gotcha!   by Jen Friske, UWC Thailand PYP Coordinator

  Thalang

Test. Exam. Quiz. Evaluation.

What feelings and emotions arise when you hear these words? What has been your prior experience with these words as a student? For most of us, it would be a range of emotions and feelings – likely, most of them negative – nervousness, dread, stress, or anxiety. Why? Because assessment, historically, has been a “Gotcha!” experience. Pulling out what you didn’t know or were unable to factually recall at that specific moment in time, bringing it to your attention through a or ×, percentage or grade and then moving on, with little to no opportunity to learn from or improve on our mistakes. It was focused more on the deficits in our understanding.

In the IB Primary Years Programme (PYP), we want to create positive feelings and emotions when it comes to the concept of assessment. So that it is something learners see as a valuable part of the learning process; that is done with them, rather than to them. We aim to provide assessment opportunities that are:

  • Authentic: supporting making connections to the real world and to promote student engagement
  • Clear and specific: including goals and success criteria that are collaboratively developed between students and teachers
  • Varied: using a wide range of tools and strategies that are fit for purpose in order to build a well-rounded picture of student learning
  • Developmental: focusing on an individual student’s progress rather than their performance in relation to others
  • Collaborative: engaging both teachers and students in the assessment development and evaluation process
  • Interactive: creating space and time for ongoing and iterative dialogues and practical application about learning and progress
  • Feedback to feedforward: providing feedback on current learning to inform what is needed to support future learning

All of this leads to the assessment being more supportive; more of an “I got you” experience. Where making mistakes isn’t used against you, but rather, celebrated as the starting point of further learning. Where students, their teachers, their peers and their parents are working collectively to create an environment where learning can flourish as a result of ongoing assessment.

To ensure a well-rounded assessment culture, the PYP looks at four dimensions:

  • Monitoring learning
  • Documenting learning
  • Measuring learning
  • Reporting on learning

While all 4 dimensions have their unique function and value, we place more emphasis on monitoring and documenting learning. These dimensions allow for more ongoing, direct student involvement in the assessment process as a whole, and are critical in providing actionable feedback for the learner.

Monitoring and Documenting learning happens daily through a variety of strategies; questioning, observation, reflection, discussion with peers and teachers, Seesaw posts and visible thinking routines and displays, just to name a few. In these two dimensions, we are looking at:

  • assessment AS learning: helping students to take responsibility by encouraging them to actively design, manage and measure their own learning
  • assessment FOR learning: a feedforward approach which involves the entire learning community. Determining what students already know and what their next steps might be

Measuring learning is intended to capture what a student has learned at a particular point in time. This includes our MAP testing data or any diagnostic assessments that teachers use to inform the design of their learning experiences moving forward. Reporting on learning informs the learning community where students are on their learning journey and describes the progress and achievement of the students’ learning. Progress reports, student/parent/teacher conferences, student-led conferences are just some of the ways in which we report on learning. In these two dimensions, we are mainly looking at:

  • Assessment OF learning: at appropriate points in a unit of inquiry or times throughout the year, this provides students with the opportunity to reflect on and gauge the development of their understanding and skills and think about next steps together in connection with their parents and their teacher.

Ultimately, we are striving to develop assessment-capable and confident learners. Those that have a strong sense of self; know how they best learn, and what they need in order to develop further. Those that have feelings of pride, excitement, and purpose when asked what their experience with assessment was. I Got You vs. Gotcha. Can you feel the difference?

See the video

Reference: International Baccalaureate Organization (2018). Primary Years Programme: From principles to practice. Learning and Teaching. 67-83

4 dimentions to ensure a well-rounded assessment culture

4 dimentions to ensure a well-rounded assessment culture

Student Assessment: I Got You VS Gotcha! 

Student Assessment: I Got You VS Gotcha! 

Jen Friska, UWC Thailand PYP Coordinator

Jen Friska, UWC Thailand PYP Coordinator

Student Assessment: I Got You VS Gotcha! 

Student Assessment: I Got You VS Gotcha! 

Student Assessment: I Got You VS Gotcha! 

Student Assessment: I Got You VS Gotcha! 

Student Assessment: I Got You VS Gotcha! 

Student Assessment: I Got You VS Gotcha! 

Student Assessment: I Got You VS Gotcha! 

Student Assessment: I Got You VS Gotcha! 

GPS coordinate: 8.051127,98.352371

 Contact info:

UWC Thailand International School
115/15 Moo 7 Thepkasattri Road,
Thepkasattri, Thalang, Phuket
83110

+66 76 336076
[email protected]
uwcthailand.ac.th

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