Educational assessment is the process of recording and utilizing empirical evidence on the individual knowledge, ability, attitude, and values to identify appropriate student needs and improve teacher learning. In this way, teachers are empowered to use their knowledge and skills to support student learning so that they can reach all their learning goals. What does an assessment entail? At a basic level, assessment involves surveying students about their knowledge, skills, attitudes, beliefs, and values in relation to the subject matter. It is also necessary to evaluate these attitudinal and behavioral responses within the context of the school setting to ensure that the findings are meaningful.
The purpose of the initial assessment is to gather the broad information needed for developing, evaluating, implementing, and controlling a curriculum. What is assessment, then, if we do not know how it differs from a self-assessment? Self-assessments are made when you are aware of your own ability and knowledge. For most people, however, an assessment process is made when a situation calls for this (e.g., teachers need to make assessments about their classroom practices or student’s progress) or when it is unavoidable because the individual cannot gather all the information needed.
An assessment process begins by gathering information relevant to the needs of the individual. Next, the questions are asked. The questions are designed to collect relevant empirical evidence about the individual’s behavior and knowledge. For example, a student questionnaire may ask a series of questions about how they learn, their attitudes toward school work, their socialization, academic performance, etc. In a similar vein, a teacher questionnaire may inquire about a student’s progress, instruction objectives, instructional practices, classroom rules, student objectives, and others. It is important that teachers provide accurate, thorough, and pertinent answers.
The next step involves the actual assessment. Different types of assessments employ different approaches to assess skills, knowledge, and abilities. One method of assessment used by most schools and institutions is the multiple-part Wender Assessment, which consists of five parts. The first part assesses academic knowledge and learning from the student’s perspective. The second part is concerned with skills and competencies. The third section assesses motivation, interest, and other aspects of a student’s performance.
The fourth section considers performance on specific tasks or questions. In Wender tests, the teacher can suggest possible test procedures and time frames. The fifth section is usually a review of the procedures suggested in the first two steps. If needed, the student can also select an alternative procedure or modify the test in any way desired. The tests are usually administered during the last weeks of the students’ school year or during the beginning of the next school year.
Similar to the multiple-step Wender Assessment, the readiness assessment process is based on aptitude, skills, interests, and knowledge. The readiness assessment consists of at least two tasks; a written test and a skill-testing task. During the written test, the child must complete a multiple-choice examination about the topics from the school book. The second task includes a skills-testing procedure where the child must demonstrate his or her knowledge about the selected topic. Parents and teachers use the results of these two tests to determine if the child is ready for the class.
The full assessment process may include at least three parts. A diagnostic interview draws together information about the child’s academic, motor, personality, communication, and behavioral issues. The diagnostic interview helps the school to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the child. Once the strengths and weaknesses have been identified, the assessment procedures proceed. These procedures involve recommendations for treatment plans for parents and teachers, as well as recommendations for classroom furnishings and other resources.
What is an assessment? While many school districts require standardized testing for children to meet preset class requirements, there are instances when the decision to include or exclude a child is determined by the family. The decisions about what is an assessment often depend on the reasoning of the school administrator as to whether or not the child meets the “average” level of intelligence, which is determined by the school district. In cases where the child has challenging behavioral issues that do not meet the criteria for regular assessments, parents may petition for a different procedure, which could involve a different type of assessment.