#diffimooc Week 13: Assessment and Motivation

Essential question: How can I use both formative and summative assessment to enhance (or at least not interfere with) intrinsic motivation?

In Great Performances: Creating Classroom-Based Assessment Tasks by Larry Lewin and Betty Jean Shoemaker there are ideas on how to assess and use activities like oral presentations and projects. The authors describe ways to set up clear guidelines and expectations when doing classroom based projects. It’s important for students to know and understand what they are being assessed on. It’s also important for teachers to help students stay on task and meet a timeline when working on projects in class.

As stated by Popham (2014), “Criterion-referenced measurement revolves around clear descriptions of what a test is measuring (p.65)”. Assessment should help educators determine their students’ educational needs. My district is looking at adopting Northwest Evaluation Association’s Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) test. MAP offers many different reports and resources teachers can use to help guide their teaching. One problem I see teachers could face with MAP in my district is a lack of training on how to use the MAP assessment reports/resources appropriately. Another problem I see teachers’ facing is whether or not the MAP test aligns with the standards we are expected to teach. As stated by Bond (1996), “The validity of the score in these decision processes depends on whether or not the content of the NRT matches the knowledge and skills expected of the students in that particular school system.”

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Cauley, K. M., & McMillan, J. H. (2010). Page 2.

According to Wormeli (2010), formative assessment is the most important aspect of assessment. He states formative assessment has the greatest impact on student achievement. Wormeli concludes that students can learn without grades, but they can’t learn without the feedback that comes from formative assessment. He suggests that teachers should spend at least the same amount of time as they do on creating summative assessments on creating formative, if not more.  While watching the Rick Wormeli in the YouTube video Rick Wormeli: Formative and Summative Assessment I started reflecting whether or not I use enough formative assessment in my classroom. In the video Wormeli also talked about the importance of feedback and how it’s the descriptive feedback that helps motivate students. I appreciate that technology has made it easier for me to formatively assess students. Resources like Kahoot, Socrative, Nearpod, Google Forms, etc., have made it possible for me to quickly assess where my students are and their needs and the students enjoy using technology, which helps with student motivation.


Bond, L. A. (1996). Norm-and Criterion-Referenced Testing. ERIC/AE Digest. Retrieved from: http://www.ericdigests.org/1998-1/norm.htm

Cauley, K. M., & McMillan, J. H. (2010). Formative assessment techniques to support student motivation and achievement. The Clearing House: A Journal of Educational Strategies, Issues and Ideas, 83(1), 1-6. Retrieved April 17, 2015 from http://www.greatschoolspartnership.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/FormativeAssessmentTechniques+Motivation.pdf

Popham, W. J. (2014). Criterion-Referenced Measurement: Half a Century Wasted? Educational Leadership, 71(6), 62-68. Retrieved from: Egan Library http://egandb.uas.alaska.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=eft&AN=94925708&login.asp&site=ehost-live

Lewin, Larry, and Shoemaker, Betty Jean. Great Performances: Creating Classroom-Based Assessment Tasks (2nd Edition). Alexandria, VA, USA: Association for Supervision & Curriculum Development (ASCD), 2011. ProQuest ebrary. Available: http://egandb.uas.alaska.edu:2081/lib/uasoutheast/reader.action?ppg=106&docID=10488667&tm=1428975832182 Web. 17 April 2015.

Moss, C. (2013). Research on Classroom Summative Assessment. Retrieved April 17, 2015 from http://www.sagepub.com/upm-data/50740_ch_14.pdf

StenHouse Publishers. (2010). Rick Wormeli: Formative and Summative Assessment. Video. Retrieved April 17, 2015 from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJxFXjfB_B4

2 thoughts on “#diffimooc Week 13: Assessment and Motivation

  1. Thanks for the great video! I too love that concluding quote from Wormeli. That immediate feedback through following formative assessment is critical. Without it, it is pointless to even do the assessment. Too many times you see teachers who do a formative assessment but don’t use the data they have collected to adjust their teacher to accommodate student needs. We do a great disservice to our students by just testing them to have information to show others that you have tested them. We also need to show the students how they did and what they need to do to improve otherwise they don’t know that they are approaching a problem incorrectly or that they have an incorrect algorithm. It’s like editing a student’s work for them, they learn best if they edit their own work, then you follow behind and show them things they missed and have them correct it themselves.

  2. Interesting thoughts on formative assessment. I do agree when a new assessment comes into play it will be difficult for the teachers to use right away. There will always be trial and error. During our new teachscape , evaluation on teachers it’s taken all year to understand the tool and how it works. When Aims came into play a few years ago, we were expected to explain the tool to parents, but at the same time we were learning it for the first time. I hope with the MAP the teachers understand how to use it and can successfully assess students with it.

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