5 tips on creating an effective assessment strategy

One of the things OfSTED inspectors will look at when considering the Quality of Education judgement is the use of assessment in courses. They want to see that it is relevant, supports the development of knowledge and skills and importantly, does not over-burden teachers and trainers.

We thought it might be useful to offer 5 tips on creating an effective assessment strategy.

If you are not familiar with OfSTED terminology, assessment is considered to be any activity used by a teacher or trainer to ensure that learners have understood the required knowledge or skills. Assessment can also include feedback and evaluation of progress made by learners towards their learning aims.

5 tips on creating an effective assessment strategy

1) Ensure the assessment is relevant to the learning objectives of the course

2) Assessment should be challenging, but not too complicated or time-consuming

3) Take advantage of a variety of methods, so that you are able to cover all aspects of the course

4) Feedback should be given at regular intervals so that learners know how they are progressing and will appreciate it more

5) Monitor and evaluate progress using a range of criteria when looking at different groups in a class or cohort.

Formative, Summative and Diagnostic Assessment

  • Teachers will be able to use diagnostic assessments to determine if there are any gaps in student achievement and other academic capabilities.
  • Teachers will be able to recognise how well students are progressing with formative assessments.
  • Summative assessments are used to assess whether students have mastered large amounts of material.
When should each assessment be implemented?
  • Diagnostics are usually given on the first day of a class, often before you start a course or a new unit.
  • Formative assessments can be administered during the teaching process.
  • Summative assessments are less given at the end or during the course period.
How are each type of assessment used?
  • To plan for future lessons, diagnostic assessments can be used
  • Formative assessments can be used best to make teaching decisions
  • Summative assessments are used to determine if a student is able to progress through a course.

If you want to create an effective assessment strategy, you need to make sure it is relevant and challenging. Keeping in mind the different types of assessments that are typically used may help you determine which one will be most beneficial for your teaching needs. Diagnostic assessments can be given at the beginning of a course or unit to assess student knowledge levels before they start learning new concepts. Formative assessments are usually administered during class time so that teachers can get feedback on how well students grasp certain concepts and adjust their lessons accordingly. If you’re not familiar with OfSTED terminology, then we recommend giving formative assessments more often than summative ones because they serve as useful tools for making decisions about future courses and lesson plans.

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