What are some theories and principles of assessment and feedback in schools?
Classroom interaction and feedback provided by the teacher should assist learners to review their progress and to plan the next steps forward. Classroom dialogue encourages and enables learners to think and talk about their thinking and learning and thereby deepen their understanding of this learning and develop their ability to act as independent learners. There are four types of learning theories: Behaviourism, Cognitivism, Constructivism and Humanism. My education background was greatly influenced by constructivist and behaviourist ideas. I believe that every students need to construct the meaning of knowledge from learning experiences. I always try to bring out the best from my students to become a self-motivated learner. Constructivism also emphasizes on student-centred learning and I believe students actually can learn more by actively doing it themselves. Therefore, I always strive to provide content-rich information and experience-based activities to my students to engage my students and facilitate them in learning. Many students complain that they do know the reasons and purposes of learning the content, and this often causes them to memorize and regurgitate the facts. Therefore, students must first be aware of the requirements and purpose of the assessment. The learning goals that are set must be explicit, precise and clear. They must know what and why they are learning and how they will be assessed. This clear understanding of the purpose of the assessment will improve students learning whilst allowing teaching to become more effective. Since the assessment needs to be correlated with the students learning outcomes, the learning outcomes must be measurable. When it comes to marking and grading, standardization and subjectivity are important. The marking process is based on the judgment and subjectivity of the marker and this often creates bias in grading.
Assessments are tests that we are all familiar with as they allow teachers and students alike to communicate academic progress. Some forms of these assessments include verbal questioning, group discussion, peer assessment, extended writing and interactive quizzes. There are many types of assessment that teachers use in regular practice which can be loosely categorized as formal and informal. Formal assessments are those that are discrete and planned in advance. These might include standardized tests, end of unit tests, purchased assessments or explicitly designed portfolio tasks. Informal assessments happen in the classroom every day, as teachers review students' work, ask questions or observe students in action. This can help to develop soft skills and make learning more holistic and realistic/practical. An example of this is the science ISA which was a popular form of in class assessed work under exam conditions but still informal. Formative assessment is ongoing and informs a teacher's understanding of student progress; students' knowledge and skills are tested against some kind of standardized benchmark.
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