Formative assessment strategies for success

During a recent eSchool News webinar, experts revealed how formative assessment can support the curriculum

A key takeaway was that formative assessment is a process, and not a “one moment in time” event.

How can formative assessment be used to support the curriculum? This was the subject of a recent webinar sponsored by SunGard K-12 Education, during which two experts revealed their strategies for success.

The panelists were John Phillipo, founder and executive director of the Center for Educational Leadership and Technology, and Bethany Silver, director of assessment, evaluation, and research for the Bloomfield, Conn., schools.

Moderating the discussion was Joel Hames, director of product management for SunGard.

Here’s a partial transcript of the event; to experience the full archived version, click here.

Joel: One of the things I think we need to take away from this is that formative assessment is a process. Those of you who have been practicing for a while probably know this intuitively. It’s really a process, and not a “one moment in time” event that occurs.

There are four primary attributes of this process. It begins with clarifying the intended learning—describing your learning targets in student-friendly language. We then move to eliciting evidence, and this isn’t just paper-and-pen tests—it’s all the obtrusive and unobtrusive pieces that you take on or interactions you have with students.

After we elicit the evidence we need to interpret it, understand what it means in the context of that student’s experience and the learning target itself. And then finally, acting on that evidence: How do you move the student forward? What kind of feedback are you giving?

The first question I have for our panelists is, how can formative assessment be effectively integrated into the classroom?

eSchool News Staff

Want to share a great resource? Let us know at