Frequently Asked Questions
You May Be Wondering...
Grades are summative evaluations of students' work or performance on an assignment, unit, or course. Grades are indicative of learning but may include aspects such as adherence to guidelines, timeliness of submission of assignments, penalties for incomplete work, collaborations, and other appropriate criteria. Most grades provide feedback to the student. Assessment provides feedback to faculty to help them improve the effectiveness of their instruction.
A grade that is based entirely on a rubric or an objective-scoring plan can legitimately be an evaluation of one or several student abilities.
Grades are primarily to give feedback to individual students about their formative or summative performance on several different learning outcomes. Assessment is designed to give feedback to the teacher about the collective performance of several students on specific learning outcomes.
Formative assessments provide feedback for both instructor and student and are ongoing and often low stake, e.g. pre-test, first draft of a paper, Summative assessments are used to document performance and to make decisions about grades on a unit, project, or course.
Students demonstrate learning by their performances in a variety of ways, for example a portfolio, senior project, examination, or dance performance. Objective scoring, expert judgment, rubric or other scoring can measure the quality of the work, product, or performance.
Students report about their learning or status for example survey report of attitude or learning
Learning is change in attitude, ability, skill, performance, knowledge, etc. that has been brought about by experience and is not developmental. You can only document change if you have prior status measures, for example a pretest
Measuring the attitudes, abilities, skills, performance, knowledge, etc. that your students have at a particular time is a performance assessment. You do not require a pretest for a performance assessment