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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation


Look beyond high-stakes testing to learn about different ways of assessing the full range of student ability -- social, emotional, and academic achievement.

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Assessment for Understanding

Standardized tests aren't the only way of gauging student achievement. Through various measures, including portfolios, presentations, and tests, educators are using performance assessments to measure what students know and can do. Watch an introduction video.


Comprehensive Assessment: A Short History

Comprehensive assessment embraces the whole system of assessing student understanding as a mechanism to improve teaching and learning. Learn more.


What the Experts Say

Educators and researchers share their views on why authentic assessment is a critical piece of the learning process. See what the experts say.


Research: Integrating Assessment into Classroom Practice

Assessment is the single most effective instructional strategy to increase learning. Learn about the key comprehensive assessment practices that have been shown by research to promote learning. Dig deeper.


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Making Failure Harder Work Than Passing

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Travel Journals: Student-Created Textbooks

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The State of the Common Core

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When Grading Harms Student Learning

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Big Ideas for Better Schools: Ten Ways to Improve Education

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Assessment, Choice, and the Learning Brain

Is there a difference between performance goals and mastery goals? Yes -- and that difference can affect student outcome on assessments.

3 2,411 21,167 views
Online Math Games Balance Challenge with Mastery Learning

Mixing it Up with Mangahigh: Using Games to Differentiate Instruction

Guest blogger Kristof Mueller, a teacher at Quest to Learn, uses the online math game site Mangahigh to illustrate three tips for differentiated instruction: pre-assessment, formative assessment, and the Goldilocks Principle of 'just right.'

1 101 9,236 views

Frictionless Formative Assessment with Social Media

Reference librarian and guest blogger Paige Alfonzo cites EMS (experience sampling study) as a foundation for using social media as a formative assessment tool for students who already live in that world.

1,595 12,595 views

A Proposition for Handling Remainders Better - Please!

Edutopia blogger Jose Vilson says we're not doing math doing students any favors by sweeping remainders under the rug at the end of a division problem. He proposes three ways of examining what that remainder is.

2 44 3,526 views

Resources for Using Rubrics in the Middle Grades

Looking for help with rubrics? With a focus on the middle grades, we've compiled tips, sample rubrics, and resources to help you design and implement rubrics for assessment.

1 84 8,564 views

Let It Marinate: The Importance of Reflection and Closing

Edutopia blogger Josh Block, acknowledging that it takes time to process information and synthesize ideas, offers some reflective and closing activities to deepen students' learning in those critical minutes at the end of class.

14 6,094 36,604 views

To Improve Test Scores: Hit Reset

Guest bloggers Hunter Maats and Katie O'Brien explain how there are no bad test takers, but stress responses are real. Students can learn how to reset the visceral distraction of feelings that inhibit their test performance.

3 126 5,206 views


Keeping Assessment Relevant and "Authentic"

Keeping It Relevant and "Authentic"

Mistakes become learning opportunities in Ben Mook's 7th grade Algebra class. To assess his students, Mook challenges them to solve real life problems, and emphasizes their thought processes over getting the right answers.

9 226 34,253 views
Making Sure They Are Learning

Making Sure They Are Learning

Sticky notes coalesce into high-level analytical thinking in Sarah Kaufmann's 6th grade humanities class, where complex concepts are broken down into manageable pieces that help students master challenging assignments.

13 330 34,086 views

What Exactly Is "Understanding?" And How Do We Assess It?

Blogger Terry Heick looks at the nebulous term "understanding" and how its many interpretations can make student assessment so difficult.

14 670 32,574 views
From Worms to Wall Street: Projects Prompt Active, Authentic Learning

From Worms to Wall Street: Projects Prompt Active, Authentic Learning

You can't tear students at Newsome Park Elementary School away from their schoolwork when it involves in-depth investigations with real-world applications.

8 69 31,903 views

Healthier Testing Made Easy: The Idea of Authentic Assessment

Tests don't just measure absorption of facts. They teach what we value.

23 27 31,567 views

Practical PBL: The Ongoing Challenges of Assessment

Katherine Piper offers three standards of assessment for individual student participation in PBL teams.

13 815 31,231 views

4 Tips to Build Student Confidence

Edutopia blogger Matt Levinson, recognizing that students get overwhelmed by unfamiliar material and choke up on assessments, offers four confidence-building strategies: verbalizing, brain dumps, non-linear thinking creativity.

7 5,286 31,063 views



Assessment Professional Development Guide

An overview of the Edutopia professional development guide for understanding the many ways to assess student learning in the classroom.

77 26,865 views

Classroom Guide: Top Ten Tips for Assessing Project-Based Learning

This guide will inspire and expand your thinking about effective assessment for project-based learning. Tips are organized to follow the arc of a project: planning, launch into active learning, and then a culminating presentation. Reflection is the final...

3,199 169,085 views
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