Methods for Studying Teachers' Assessment Practices
To study the relationship between teachers' assessment practices and student performance requires accurate measures of classroom assessment. Such measures do not currently exist. In this study, we will review the literature to conceptualize the domain and to provide a framework for developing appropriate measurement strategies. This framework will be refined over time in collaboration with our CAESL colleagues working on other aspects of assessment.
We will use this initial framework to develop teacher surveys and methods for collecting and analyzing examples of classroom assessment, so that we can assess the nature and quality of teachers' assessment practices.
The methods will draw on prior and on-going CRESST work using teachers' assignments as indicators of classroom practice. That work to date has focused on the language arts, but is currently being extended to middle school science in a project with the Los Alamos Laboratory and the Northern New Mexico Council on Excellence in Education's Math and Science Academy (MSA).
The approach asks teachers to provide multiple examples of assignment and student work as well as their assessment of that work. The collections are scored based on alignment with standards, clarity of goals, alignment of instructional tasks, assessment and stated goals/standards, and quality of assessment. Our CAESL study will also explore using observations and interviews to judge teachers' assessment practices. The goal is to create a method that can be used in subsequent CAESL studies and elsewhere.
Researchers: Joan Herman: UCLA/CRESST