MINDFUL STUDENT ASSESSMENT PRACTICES

Student assessment is identifying how well a student grasped the concept taught. It is done through assigning a grading scale or allotting marks according to the student’s understanding and knowledge on the topic through their responses on tests, assignments and quizzes. Assessing help teachers identify and understand how well a student has understood the topic, concept, or subject taught. Student assessments are generally grade-based and are assessed through examinations, projects, quizzes, multiple-choice questions and standardized tests.

Teachers have more responsibilities than teaching a subject. They are responsible for a student's productivity and growth. Hence, they are required to assess a student’s performance in their curriculum proactively. This can be done by incorporating the best student assessment practices.

Assessing students can be challenging. It's not about "just grading" but also identifying the gaps between what is taught by the teacher and what the student understands. The assessments should be engaging and justified for the students.


MINDFUL STUDENT ASSESSMENT PRACTICES
MINDFUL STUDENT ASSESSMENT PRACTICES

In this blog, we will take you through different ways of mindful practices you should apply to your assessment patterns.

1. Make the assessment interesting

The grading system can be used to assess their knowledge on a topic. However, with the usual grade system, the strengths and weaknesses of the student do not come to light. You can assign some kind of reward to bring out their creativity. Additionally, you can use quizzing or multiple choice question techniques to increase their knowledge of the topic.

2. Have a purpose

Every assessment should be set with the purpose of knowing the student's understanding of the concept and how well the student is performing in the class. While selecting the assessment, ask yourself the following questions:

How is this question beneficial in understanding of the topic?

How will this assessment impact my understanding of the student’s ability?

3. Encourage feedbacks

Just like how you encourage feedback in your teaching method and pace, ask your students the review of their assessments. It can be a tough thing to hear, but at the end of the day, the assessments are set for students, and they should learn from them. It can be not easy and sometimes pressurizing to receive results, but a comfortable and friendly relationship between both teacher and student makes the process easy. Give your students constructive criticism and productive feedback instead of outright negative comments. In addition, it also requires openness, trust and understanding in both parties to propel the student ahead in their assessments.

Type of Assessments:
1. Internal Assessments

These types of assessments refer to assessments conducted to track a student's progress during the curriculum. Through this, you will be able to identify the concepts that your students understood and are having difficulty in understanding. Internal assessments are excellent in tracking a student’s knowledge progress in the classroom in real-time. There are various online classroom tools available that can help with internal assessments for students.

Some techniques of internal assessments are:

· Group projects

· Class discussions and debates

· Quizzes

· Class tests

2. Final Assessments

As the name suggests, these assessments are evaluated at the end of the course by comparing the student’s performance to some set standard. These assessments measure the progress of students in the overall subject. It is grade-based. However, since these grades reflect their academic knowledge and not the application or practical aspect, it can be stressful to both students and teachers. Although it is based on the grading system, it can be made creative or certain engaging elements can be added to it.

Some creative elements of final assessments include:

· A short skit of the concept

· Video making on the related aspect

· Conducting a podcast

Ensure that it is brief and the assessment instructions are clear and informative.

3. Self-assessments

These assessments are such that the student is competing against themselves. These types will help them constantly try to improve and push forward. These are based on some standards adjusted according to age and geography. Due to its unique assessing aspect, these out-of-box assessments will help compare the students from all walks of talent in their age.

These types of assessments include:

· National and International competitions

· IQ tests

· Physical assessments


4. Competitive Assessments

Competitive assessments or examinations are standardized tests that measure the ability of any student from any background. These tests are set and evaluated such that students globally can give the exam. Examples include SAT, GRE, TOEFL, IELTS etc. Based on these test scores, the students are enrolled in various colleges. These exams are conducted to assess their technical, analytical, and problem-solving ability. Standardized tests are important in evaluating a student's language ability for studying in a foreign country as well as for deciding on college enrollment.

These types of assessments include:

· Language tests

· General knowledge

· Quantitative problems


5. Continuous Assessments

Assessments should not be a one-time thing because students are constantly growing and evolving. Continuously assessing your students (in different ways) will help you analyze their performance in the true sense. But if it is a one-time assessment, it will fail to identify the true potential of students. So, it requires a series of assessments to monitor the progress of a student's performance. So, instead of one final assessment, the curriculum should involve a series of small tests to test their performance accurately.

These types of assessments include:

· Assignments

· Quizzes

· Projects


6. Flexible Assessments

Students perceive learning differently. They vary in strengths and skills. These assessments will analyze how they demonstrate their learning. Some students excel in presentations or oral examinations, while some are great in writing. To learn which method is best suited for students' learning, teachers need to be flexible and responsive to their strengths.

These types of assessments include:

· Presentations

· Lectures

· Oral examinations

· Report/article writing



7. Debates and Discussions

Debates and discussions in a classroom on a particular topic always encourage the engagement and interaction of students. These should be carried out frequently to bring forward more ideas and thoughts on the concept. It is recommended to carry out a discussion once the particular topic is covered. This will give an understanding of how much the student understood the concept. A debate can involve students coming up with a debatable issue of the subject. These will propel forward a series of arguments and explanations of the problems. This assessment can be evaluated and their performance can be added to their overall academic records. The debate and discussions will improve their preparation and understanding of the topic.

Steps to conduct a debate session in the classroom:

· Instruct students to prepare the information on the topic covered

· Invite one or two teachers to join the debate teams

· Have a debate moderator

· Divide the students into two groups (for and against)

· Conduct a healthy debate session

· Highlight the important and interesting point brought out by both the teams at the end of the session


Conclusion

Student assessment is a continuous learning process and should be conducted with care and purpose. Students should be evaluated in various aspects like analytical, technical, creativity and practical knowledge. Times are changing, and hence, teachers are moving away from pen and paper examinations to different online assessments. These consist of presentations, digital assignments, video or short film making and many other creative assessments. Online assessments and teaching are more encouraged nowadays, which identify the strengths and weaknesses of students. The assessments consist of personalized learning to enhance the knowledge of the topic.

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