Assessment informs learning
- Educators assess student learning, because assessment is a crucial part of improving student outcomes.
- Assessment can transform student learning when assessments are designed to collect information aligned with targeted learning goals based on the Minnesota Academic Standards.
A well-balanced system of assessment has a greater emphasis on formative assessment
- A balanced system of assessment effectively combines formative, interim, and summative tools in the assessment of student learning.
- Classroom-based formative techniques are most likely to impact student learning and growth, since they can be individualized.
- Formative assessment tools become even more powerful when they articulate student-facing learning goals that are aligned and promote mastery of the standards. When students understand the learning goals and receive direct feedback from formative assessment, it can motivate learning and increase student engagement.
MCA results are not intended to be used as the only evidence to inform decisions
Summative assessments like the MCA provide information on a broader level, and are not serving their intended purpose if they are individualized in the same way as teacher-designed formative assessments.
The use of state assessment data as the only piece of evidence to justify decision making, or to target individual student growth is not an effective practice, and can be detrimental to student learning and teacher growth.
A comprehensive and balanced assessment system integrates the right balance of all three assessment types, since all three are needed in order to motivate learning and promote growth for both teachers and students.
Resources for the assess section are organized into two pages: