I’ve been trying to identify the best articles/posts that describe alternative ways to assess student learning other than high-stakes testing, and would love suggestions from readers for others.
Here’s what I have so far:
Jay Mathews wrote a column in the Washington Post titled Intriguing alternative to rating schools by tests. He speaks very positively about the student assessment process used by the New York Performance Standards Consortium.
The term “performance-based assessment” is a term used to describe one way to evaluate student achievement (the Consortium’s process would fit into this category). This basically means that students are evaluated on work they have “constructed” as opposed to choosing from a list of pre-determined answers. This could mean a writing assessment, similar to what is done in Vermont or Kentucky, or filling-in the blanks in a cloze (there are usually multiple appropriate responses), or describing how a student would develop a science experiment. The Stanford Center For Opportunity Policy In Education has developed a brief that lays-out the case for performance-based assessment and how it might be implemented. You can also learn more about this topic here.
The Other Kind of Testing is a good column by Walt Gardner in Education Week. It’s about “performance-based assessment” for students
Monty Neill from Fair Test has had a commentary published in Ed Week titled A Better Way to Assess Students and Evaluate Schools.
Teachers: How do We Propose to Measure Student Outcomes? by Anthony Cody
Bonnie Bc on Twitter suggested these:
A Child Is Not A Test Score by Monty Neill
An alternative to standardized testing for student assessment is from The Washington Post.
Time to Put Forward a New Reform Agenda is by Pedro Noguera. I think the part about student performance-based assessments is particularly interesting.
Tests Seen as Bar to Better Assessment is from Education Week.
Help Has Arrived!: Banishing NCLB’s Narrow Paradigm is from the National Education Policy Center.
Monty Neill: Authentic Assessment as Part of a Testing Reform Campaign is from Education Week.
What Should Schools Be Assessing – and How? is by Sam Chaltain.
Rethinking Assessment: Trusting Teachers to Evaluate Student Learning is from Mindshift.
The New York Performance Standards Consortium has been recognized by The American Federation of Teachers by its prize for Solution-Driven Unionism.
Coalition wants the state to let more schools skip the Regents is an article about the New York Performance Standards Consortium.
How Schools Can Succeed Without Tests is from The Hechinger Report.
In Kentucky, Students Succeed Without Tests is from NPR.
Here’s Why We Don’t Need Standardized Tests is from Ed Week.
What Schools Could Use Instead Of Standardized Tests is a short and sweet review of possible alternatives to using standardized tests in schools. It’s probably the best thing I’ve seen on this subject. I was familiar with all of them except I had never heard of “stealth assessment,” which sound intriguing and depressing at the same time.
Please leave other suggestions in the comments section of this post. Thanks!