What is Formative Assessment?

Formative assessment

What is Formative Assessment?

Formative assessment takes place during instructional process which provides feedback and information from the learners and also correct learning errors. By formative assessment, a teacher can also assess his own progress as an instructor.

When an instructor assess student during classroom instruction with a purpose to have a feedback that how can he make his teacher learning process better, that is formative assessment.

In this assessment, instructors are not assessing what learners learnt or not, rather they assess the process behind the learners learning. It is conducted during the academic session so that instructor can get a feedback about his way of teaching and how learners are acquiring and decisions are made on the basis of results immediately. Formative assessment is an ongoing process to modify teaching strategies on the basis of learners need.

Formative assessment provides feedback to instructors:

·         To improve teaching-learning process

·         To know about strength and weakness of learning process 

·         To change instructors’ teaching practices

It also provides feedback to students as well:

·         Helps students to reflect on their weaknesses

·         Helps students to encourages them for their successful learning

·         It provides feedback to students who are struggling with a specific content area or concept.

 Types of Formative Assessment  

·         Student‘s non-verbal feedback during ongoing class 

·         Observations during in-class activities

·         Homework exercises as review for class discussions  and exams

·         Student feedback collected by periodically answering specific question

·         Formal/planned question and answer sessions

·         Informal/spontaneous question and answer sessions

·         Reflections journals that are reviewed periodically during the semester 

·         In-class activities where students informally present their results 

·         Conferences between the instructor and student at various points in the semester 

 Different Functions of Formative Assessment  

·         Formative assessment focus on predefined segment of instruction. 

·         Its results are used to improve and direct learning through ongoing feedback.

·         Limited sample of learning tasks are addressed. 

·         It is conducted periodically during the instructional process. 

·         The difficulty of item varies with each segment of instruction.

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