Balanced Assessment

Envisioning the goal

Students learn best when students and teachers share a clear understanding of the desired learning outcome.Teachers use a variety of tools to build this understanding before learning. They may bring in exemplars, such as samples of student work from previous years, and discuss which examples show skill mastery and which may be missing elements. With this shared understanding, students are better able to set learning goals, plan their learning strategies, and monitor their own work.

Gathering a Strong Body of Evidence

Because any individual piece of evidence of learning may be fallible, teachers choose an appropriate combination of assessment tools to build a balanced body of evidence and ensure student assessment is fair, reliable, and valid.

The full picture of student learning only comes through a balanced assessment of conversation, observation and evaluation of the product of learning. A student may bake a tasty dish, but to know if the student understands nutritional concepts or creating meals within a budget, you’d have to talk to them about their choices and observe them in the process of creating a number of dishes.

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