Blogs on Assessment



Move past high-stakes testing and expand your understanding about the different types of effective assessment.

John LarmerJuly 1, 2011

Many teachers and administrators -- not to mention the general public -- might have the wrong impression of PBL. Maybe they have stereotypical views of what a "project" is, or they've seen poor examples of it in the past. Or they can't imagine how it could fit in today's landscape of standards and testing ("Oh yeah, we did that in the 90's, but things were different then.")

Here are some common misconceptions and how you could respond with a "fact check" if you're trying to explain or defend PBL.

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Andrew MillerJune 28, 2011

Another buzzword that permeates the conversation around education is relevancy, and rightfully so. We want our students not only to make connections to real-world problems but also to do these activities.

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Ben JohnsonJune 2, 2011

In 1986, Donna Ogle created KWL, a reading strategy that engages the students in the text or textbook and helps students analyze what they are reading. Students are asked to describe what they already know about the reading topic. Then they are asked to look at the title, the introduction and the pictures and determine what they want to know more of, in essence to determine why they should continue reading the literature.

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Anne OBrienMay 10, 2011

We all know that reading and math standardized test scores do not truly represent how good a school is. But thanks to No Child Left Behind -- the current version of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) -- they are just about all we consider while judging a school's performance.

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Holden ClemensApril 1, 2011

Editor's Note: Today's guest blog is by Holden Clemens. Mr. Clemens is an educator. This makes him slightly more qualified than most politicians to comment on education.


I would like to take this moment to in honor of today -- Scott Walker Day -- to share my thoughts on the current state of the educational system in our beloved country.

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Heather Wolpert-GawronMarch 28, 2011

The following is an excerpt from my new book, 'Tween Crayons and Curfews: Tips for Middle School Teachers, I share what I call "lesson trails," step-by-step activities that I routinely use in my classroom

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Andrew MillerFebruary 28, 2011

One of the greatest potentials for PBL is that it calls for authentic assessment. In a well-designed PBL project, the culminating product is presented publicly for a real audience. PBL is also standards-based pedagogy. Oftentimes when I consult and coach teachers in PBL, they ask about the assessment of standards. With the pressures of high stakes testing and traditional assessments, teachers and administrators need to make sure they accurately design projects that target the standards they need students to know and be able to do.

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Rebecca AlberFebruary 15, 2011

Updated 01/2014

Summative assessments, or high stakes tests and projects, are what the eagle eye of our profession is fixated on right now, so teachers often find themselves in the tough position of racing, racing, racing through curriculum.

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EdutopiaFebruary 9, 2011

Edutopia's first Schools That Work installment about comprehensive assessment focuses on a New York City school that has changed the game of student assessment. Think: more rigorous, more relevant, more fun.

While that may not sound terribly sexy, don't be fooled. These techniques -- and what New York's Manhattan-based School of the Future has achieved with them -- have the potential to change the way we understand and learn from our successes and failures.


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