Ideally the assessment process informs the teacher and the learner about learner progress and at the same time, contributes to the learning process. In theory, good assessment:
- measures meaningful learning outcomes
- does so in a fair, reliable, accurate way
- is easy to administer, score, and interpret
- informs the teacher about student performance and how they are interpreting course experiences
- results in meaningful feedback to the learner
- is itself a learning experience
Measuring student learning is always a challenge no matter what the delivery format. Your choices are limited by time, resources and creativity. When thinking about student assessment in a course, the following questions may help decide how many and what types of assessments you will include in your course.
- What is it you want your students to learn?
- What do they already know? Is a pre-test needed to measure prior knowledge?
- Which assessment methods match your teaching style?
- What assessment method will best test what your students learned?
- Will you test memorization or performance?
- Will these assessments be low or high stakes? (what portion of final grade)
- Should you use adaptive testing? (will the test adapt to user responses)
- How many assessments are sufficient? How many papers should you assign? How many quizzes and exams will be enough?
- Will the number of students affect the type of assessment you choose?
- How quickly will students receive feedback?
- How much time will you spend correcting or commenting on assessments?
- How much grading time will you have?