Learning theory supports four effective strategies common to both formative assessment and scaffolding. Some people roll their eyes when ivory tower academics talk theory. But a good theory can be immensely practical. Learning theory provides coherence and big-picture understandings, especially when we're trying to change our teaching practices. Learning theory also helps us decide what to do when we can't rely on past experience.
How Dynamic Formative Assessment Can Improve Student Learning
Formative and Summative Assessments | Poorvu Center for Teaching and Learning
Each is a long-term, supported learning experience that provides opportunity to learn, implement, and reflect on teaching and learning. MDE's Formative Assessment for Michigan Educators FAME since has provided professional learning opportunities for teams of educators, led by a coach, to develop, read about, implement, and reflect on the formative assessment process. Teams are developed locally and share multiple configurations of members. Learning teams are provided a learning guide and access to a FAME resource website and encouraged to stay together for up to three years.
The Formative Assessment Process
A formative assessment can be defined as a variety of mini-assessments that allow a teacher to adjust instruction on a frequent basis. These continuous assessments allow teachers to use a variety of instructional strategies to help students reach instructional goals. A formative assessment is quick and easy to administrator and provides both the teacher and student with quick data that ultimately drives instruction and learning.
Higher Education. The importance of formative assessment instudent learning is generally acknowledged, butit is not well understood across higher education. The identification of some key features offormative assessment opens the way for adiscussion of theory. It is argued that thereis a need for further theoretical developmentin respect of formative assessment, which needsto take account of disciplinary epistemology,theories of intellectual and moral development,students' stages of intellectual development,and the psychology of giving and receivingfeedback. A sketch is offered of the directionthat this development might take.