Georgia Performance Standards Day 2: Assessment for learning

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Georgia Performance Standards

  • Day 2:
  • Assessment FOR Learning

Assessment FOR versus Assessment OF

  • Autopsies don’t make the patient better.
  • Assessment is not end of the year– it is through the year!
  • Practice on only one type of format can worsen the failure to generalize.
  • The primary purpose of assessment should be to assist both educators and policy makers to improve instruction and advance student learning.
  • Doug Reeves and National Forum on Assessment

Training Overview: Day Two

  • Reflections on Redelivery
  • Introduction to Module
  • Introduction to Assessment
  • Balanced Assessment
  • Matching Assessments to Standards
  • Planning for Assessment
  • Constructing Rubrics and Performance Assessments

Day Two Objectives

  • Explain why assessment is Stage 2 in the Standards-Based Education process.
  • Identify the purpose of assessment in the classroom.
  • Differentiate among different types of assessment and assessment formats.
  • Match assessment types with assessment targets.
  • Create a balanced assessment plan for a unit, including examples of performance tasks, rubrics, and constructed response items.

Georgia Performance Standards

  • What Have We Learned?
  • Best Practices
  • GPS Teacher Training

What Have We Learned? CRCT Focus Groups

  • 6th grade Math: Trion City, Oconee County, Forsyth County, Monroe County, Jefferson City, Fayette County, Pierce County, Lee County, Bremen City, Camden County.
  • 6th grade Science: Oconee County, Rabun County, Jefferson City, Forsyth County, Trion City, Fayette County, Bremen City, Chickamauga City, Union County, Cherokee County
  • 7th grade Science: Clinch County, Chickamauga City, Trion City, Forsyth County, Oconee County, Fayette County, Commerce City, Schley County, Vidalia City, Banks County

Planned collaboratively – horizontal and vertical planning

  • Planned collaboratively – horizontal and vertical planning
  • Coupled content training with GPS training
  • Bottom-up approach – asked teachers what they needed to feel comfortable with GPS training
  • Focused on areas of weakness during their training
  • What did they say?
  • Professional Development

What did they say? Instructional Strategies

  • Real world application of content
  • Exploratory teachers supported content of core classes
  • Used data to drive instruction – identify struggling students and remediate them
  • Used all available technology to research topics and manipulate/analyze data from hands-on labs
  • Ideal inclusion models used – true collaborative teaching, daily differentiation through flexible grouping
  • Used textbook as a guide, coupled with hands-on learning experiences, visual guides and graphic organizers (benefits all levels of learners)

What did they say? Time and Resources

  • Time:
    • Adjusted school schedule to provide more instructional time in low-performing areas
    • Used class time after CRCT to pre-teach next year’s first standards
    • Leveraged time/human resources to allow for collaborative planning and teaming
  • Resources:
    • GYSTC, PRISM, RESA, CRCT Coach, Learning Focused Schools, etc.

Georgia Performance Standards

  • What Have We Learned?
  • GPS Teacher Training

What Have We Learned: Multi-media Training Resources

  • Videos, “Webcasts,” PowerPoints and Narrated Text Documents
    • GPS training for untrained teachers
    • Subject-area content training
    • Effective practices
  • Can be self-taught or used by trainers
  • Collaborative Partnership

Essential Question (overarching)

  • What does assessment look like in a performance-based science classroom?

Standards Based Education Model

  • GPS
  • Standards with Elements
  • All Above, plus
  • Tasks
  • Student Work
  • Teacher
  • Commentary
  • All Above
  • Stage 1:
  • Identify Desired Results
  • What do I want my students
  • to know and be able to do?
  • Big Ideas  Enduring Understandings 
  • Essential Questions
  • ---------------------------------------
  • Stage 2:
  • Determine Acceptable Evidence
  • (Design Balanced Assessments)
  • How will I know whether my students have acquired the requisite knowledge, skills, and understandings?
  • (to assess student progress toward
  • desired results)
  • Stage 3:
  • Plan Learning Experiences and Instruction
  • What will need to be done to provide my students with multiple opportunities to acquire the knowledge, skills, and understandings?
  • (to support student success on assessments,
  • leading to desired results)
  • Skills and Knowledge
  • Select standards from among those students need to know
  • Design an assessment through which students will have an opportunity to demonstrate those things
  • Decide what learning opportunities students will need to learn those things and plan appropriate instruction to assure that each student has adequate opportunities to learn
  • Use data from assessment to give feedback, reteach or move to next level
  • Select a topic from the curriculum
  • Design instructional activities
  • Design and give an assessment
  • Give grade or feedback
  • Move onto new topic
  • Standards-based Practice
  • Traditional Practice
  • The Process of Instructional Planning

Stephen Covey Quote

  • “To begin with the end in mind means to start with a clear understanding of your destination. It means to know where you’re going so that you better understand where you are now and so that the steps you take are always in the right direction.”

What is assessment?

  • Assessment is the systematic observation and evaluation of student performance.

What is assessment?

  • Do students know? Are they able to complete processes and demonstrate skills? Do they understand?
  • How well do students know? How well are they able to complete processes and demonstrate skills? How well do they understand?
  • What do students not know? What are they not yet able to do? What don’t they understand?

Creating a Photo Album, Not a Snapshot, of Assessment Results

  • Use this Faculty Questionnaire to determine staff perceptions about assessment.
  • Each staff member evaluates the extent the strategy is currently used.
  • Follow-up planning can help teachers create an action plan to address weaknesses and gaps.

Speaking the same language?

  • Create your own definition for each of the following terms related to assessment. (See next slide and handout in Guide.)
  • Begin with each grouping of words to determine if the group of terms are the same or different.
  • Find a partner to check on agreement or disagreement of the meaning of each term.
  • Share findings with your group and discuss implications.

Are We Speaking the Same Language? Defining our terms:

  • Assessment
  • Evaluation
  • Content Standards
  • Performance Standards
  • Characteristics of Science Standards
  • Assessment for learning
  • Assessment of learning
  • Benchmarks
  • Formative vs. Summative assessment
  • Performance Assessment
  • Authentic Assessment
  • Rubric
  • Checklist
  • Feedback-adjustment process
  • Progress Monitoring

Wiggins and McTighe Model Continuum of Assessments

  • Informal Checks
  • Observation & Dialogue
  • Tests & Quizzes
  • Academic Prompts
  • Performance Tasks

Stiggins’ Assessment Methods

  • Selected Response
  • Essay
  • Performance Assessment
  • Personal Communication

Marzano’s Assessment Items

  • Forced-Choice
  • Essay
  • Short Written Response
  • Oral Reports
  • Performance Tasks
  • Teacher Observation
  • Student Self-Assessment

Assessment Formats for Day 2

  • Selected Response
  • Constructed Response
  • Performance Assessment
  • Informal and Self-Assessment
  • Adapted from Marzano, Stiggins, UbD

Group Activity

  • Choose one of the four assessment formats.
  • Read the information provided about the format.
  • Get a piece of chart paper and marker.
  • Use a Standard and element to compose an additional example of an assessment item using the format. Write it on the chart.
  • Record the advantages and limitations of the item.
  • Report your example and ideas to the whole group.

Whole Group Reporting

  • Choose a recorder for each type of format.
  • Have each group report their examples to the recorder for each type of format.
  • Discuss examples, advantages and limitations.

Examples of each

  • Selected Response

Classroom Assessment Strategies

  • Multiple Choice
  • True-False
  • Matching
  • Selected Response
  • Fill-in-the-blank (words, phrases)
  • Essay
  • Short answer (sentences, paragraphs)
  • Diagram
  • Web
  • Concept Map
  • Flowchart
  • Graph
  • Table
  • Matrix
  • Illustration
  • Presentation
  • Movement
  • Science lab
  • Athletic skill
  • Dramatization
  • Enactment
  • Project
  • Debate
  • Model
  • Exhibition
  • Recital
  • Oral questioning
  • Observation
  • Interview
  • Conference
  • Process description
  • Checklist
  • Rating scale
  • Journal sharing
  • Thinking aloud a process
  • Student self-assessment
  • Peer review
  • Constructed
  • Response
  • Performance Assessment
  • Informal Assessment

Matching Assessment to Standards

  • Standards require different achievement targets.
    • Knowledge/Information
    • Skills/Processes
    • Thinking and Reasoning
    • Communication
      • This list of achievement targets are adapted from Marzano

Knowledge and Skills

  • Facts
  • Concepts
  • Generalizations
  • Rules, laws, procedures
  • (declarative)
  • Skills
  • Procedures
  • Processes
  • (procedural)

Target: Knowledge and Skills

  • S1E2. Students will observe, measure, and communicate weather data to see patterns in weather and climate.
  • a. Identify different types of weather and the characteristics of each type.
  • What is today’s weather?
  • Sunny Partly sunny Cloudy Rainy

Making Circuit Sense….

  • Adapted from 4-H CCS Electric Excitement project series Level 1, Magic of Electricity.

Circuit Sense: Knowledge and Skills

  • An electric current needs:
  • A power source to push electrons.
  • A path for electrons to travel along.
  • Something for electrons to do (i.e. light a bulb)
  • Build each of the circuits in the diagram.
  • Build circuit #3 again removing one of the light bulbs from the light bulb holder.
  • Build circuit #4 again, but this time turn one of the batteries around so that the positive ends are next to each other.
  • Adapted from 4-H CCS Electric Excitement project series Level 1, Magic of Electricity.

Circuit Sense: Knowledge and Skills

  • A student is testing materials to see if they conduct electricity. The student places items at the “X” making sure the object is in contact with the loose end of each wire. Which item will electricity flow through, causing the bulb to light?
    • A plastic comb
    • A penny
    • A piece of paper
    • A crayon
  • Selected Response Assessment:

Thinking and Reasoning

  • Comparison and contrast
  • Analysis of relationships
  • Classification
  • Argumentation
  • Induction
  • Deduction
  • Experimental inquiry
  • Investigation
  • Problem solving
  • Decision making
  • -Marzano

Target: Thinking and Reasoning

  • SKE1. Students will describe time patterns (such as day to night and night to day) and objects (such as sun, moon, stars) in the day and night sky.
  • a. Describe changes that occur in the sky during the day, as day turns into night, during the night, and as night turns into day.
  • b. Classify objects according to those seen in the day sky and those seen in the night sky.
  • c. Recognize that the Sun supplies heat and light to Earth.
  • Why does the sun look different than the stars you see at night?

Circuit Sense: Thinking and Reasoning

  • Reflect:
  • How did you decide if the circuit was open or closed?
  • What did you discover about circuits?
  • Why is it important to be able to read a wiring diagram?
  • Apply:
  • What are some electrical circuits in your home that are open? Closed?
  • What are some situations where it is important to know if a circuit is open or closed? Why is this important?
  • Adapted from 4-H CCS Electric Excitement project series Level 1, Magic of Electricity.

Engagement and Motivation

  • Choice
  • Power
  • Competence
  • Number of Items
  • Homework menus
  • Students write questions for the test.
  • Rubrics with assignment.
  • Nintendo effect—Immediate feedback
  • Accurate, specific feedback

Small group discussion: What has to happen?

  • “…if assessment is not working effectively in our classrooms every day, then assessment at all other levels (district, state, national, or international) represents a complete waste of time and money.” Stiggins, 1999
  • If you know what a student must understand, how do you check to see if that student understands?
  • What evidence will you use to evaluate the level of understanding?
  • What will you do in your classroom based on the evidence you collect?

Critical Filters

      • What type of evidence is required to assess the standard? (e.g., recall of knowledge, understanding of content, ability to demonstrate process, thinking, reasoning, or communication skills)
      • What assessment method will provide the type of evidence needed?
      • Will the task (assessment method) provide enough evidence to determine whether students have met the standard?
      • Is the task developmentally appropriate?
      • Will the assessment provide students with various options for showing what they know?

Performance Tasks & Assessments . . .

  • . . . often occur over time
  • . . . result in a tangible product or observable performance
  • . . . encourage self-evaluation and revision
  • . . . require judgment to score
  • . . . reveal degrees of proficiency based on criteria established and made public prior to the performance
  • . . . sometimes involve students working with others
  • -Marzano, Pickering, & McTighe


  • G Real-world GOAL
  • R Real-world ROLE
  • A Real-world Audience
  • S Real-world Situation
  • P Real-world Products or Performances
  • S Standards

Ask Yourself These Questions

  • Does the task measure essential learning?
  • Does it “feel” authentic to the students?
  • Is it rich? Does it have many possibilities?
  • Is it intellectually engaging?
  • Does it result in active involvement?
  • Is it feasible?
  • Is it equitable?
  • Is the task open?
  • What does this cartoon illustrate about perspectives of assessment?

“Unpacking is an ongoing and continual dialogue.” John Brown, ASCD

  • Work in small groups.
  • Choose a standard and element(s) you have unpacked to the skills and knowledge level or want to unpack for this task.
  • Develop a culminating task for a unit using the GRASPS acronym.

Resources for Enduring Understandings

  • Remember that the Georgia Performance Standards in Science were based on Benchmarks for Science Literacy and National Science Education Standards. Both of these books provide the guidelines of what a student should understand. If you are unsure of the depth of understanding or want further clarification, you can refer to either of these for help.
  • Benchmarks for Science Literacy On-line:
  • National Science Education Standards On-line:

A Culminating Project/Performance Assessment Task includes

  • Instructions for the students
  • Dimensions of the task (knowledge, understanding, skills being assessed)
  • Scoring systems:
    • Rubric—used to judge levels of performance
    • Checklist—used to judge whether or not the skill or behavior has been demonstrated

A Sample G.R.A.S.P.S for First Grade

  • Sunny
  • Partly Sunny
  • Cloudy
  • Rainy
  • Snowy
  • Looking at the sky can tell us what kind of weather we might have. You are going to observe the sky and collect data about the conditions you see for the next two weeks.
  • Predict one kind of weather or sky condition you think you will see most often in the next two weeks. (sunny, partly sunny, cloudy, rainy, snowy)
  • Once each day observe the sky and record what you see on a calendar.
  • Total the number of observations you have for each of the 5 kinds of sky conditions listed to complete the chart. (Tally chart)
  • Use the sky condition chart to make a bar graph showing the number of days each sky condition occurred. Include a title for the graph.
  • Use numbers and symbols (<, >, =, +, -) to compare 2 or 3 sky conditions from your data chart.
  • How were the weather or sky conditions like your prediction?
  • How is it different?

Eighth Grade G.R.A.S.P.S.

  • Goal – The goal is to sell bulk quantities of element “X.”
  • Role - You are a traveling sales agent for a particular chemical company.
  • Audience – The people in your community.
  • Situation – Mass quantities of element “X” have been produced, however the demand for element “X” has declined over the past year. In order for the company to generate a profit, all of element “X” must be sold!
  • Products - As a sales agent, it is your job to develop the best sales pitch that conveys to your audience the tremendous need for having this element as a part of their daily life. A Multimedia or a slide presentation (project), brochure, poster board, TV commercial presentation (role-play) or another format that has received prior approval by your teacher.
  • Standards – S8P1a,b,f

According to Grant Wiggins…

  • “What is to be assessed must be clear and explicit to all students:
  • ….rubrics must accompany all major assignments and assessments.”

A rubric is a set of rules that

  • Shows levels of quality
  • Communicates standards
  • Tells students expectations for assessment task
  • Is NOT a checklist (yes or no answers)
  • Includes dimensions (criteria), indicators and a rating scale.

Advantages of Using a Rubric

  • Lowers students’ anxiety about what is expected of them
  • Provides specific feedback about the quality of their work
  • Provides a way to communicate expectations and progress
  • Ensures all student work is judged by the same standard
  • Disengages the “halo” effect and its reverse
  • Leads students toward quality work.
  • Far Side Gallery by Gary Larsen
  • Pay attention that you are scoring the evidence of what you want the student to know and be able to do. How good is good enough? Don’t get confused by criteria that sounds good but doesn’t match the goal.

Basic Rubric Template

  • Scale
  • Criteria
  • Indicator
  • Indicator
  • Indicator
  • Indicator
  • Indicator
  • Indicator
  • Indicator
  • Indicator
  • Indicator
  • Indicator
  • Indicator
  • Indicator

Ugly Rubrics

  • Too wordy so that no one can understand the dimensions or indicators, let alone use them for a fair grade
  • Checklists – Have it, don’t have it
  • Judge each work against other items of work
  • Judge the wrong thing so student can just jump through hoops to get a good grade.

Good Rubrics

  • Are tools
  • Show level of quality of a performance or task
  • Communicate standards clearly and specifically
  • Are given to students to set expectations
  • Show what to avoid and addresses misconceptions
  • Are consistent and reliable
  • Use content that matches standards and instructional emphasis


  • The purpose of the Georgia Testing Program is
  • to measure the level of student achievement of the standards,
  • to identify students failing to achieve mastery of content,
  • to provide teachers with diagnostic information,
  • to assist school systems in identifying strengths and weaknesses in order to establish priorities in planning educational programs.

K-2: Science Assessment in Early Childhood Programs

  • General Purposes of Assessment
  • Guiding Principles of Early Childhood Assessment
  • Documentation

Timeline of Test Development

  • Vendors
  • Database of items
  • Committees
  • Field Tests
  • Data analysis
  • Content Descriptions

Testing Resources

  • What Georgia Educators Need to Know about Georgia’s Testing Program
  • Georgia Department of Education—Testing
  • Criterion-Referenced Competency Test (CRCT)
  • End of Course Test (EOCT)
  • National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)
  • Georgia High School Graduation Test (GHSGT)

Characteristics of Exemplary Assessment

  • Emphasizes learning process as well as product
  • Requires active construction of meaning
  • Assesses interdisciplinary and cross disciplinary skills
  • Helps students self monitor
  • Gives specific expectations for students
  • Emphasizes the application and use of knowledge
  • Has meaning and relevance to students
  • Emphasizes complex skills
  • Makes standards public and known in advance

Follow Up Assignment

  • Before returning for Day 3 of training, please read What Happens Between Assessments? This article is available online at:
  • By the end of Day 2 of training, you should have the knowledge and skills necessary to unpack the standards and design assessment plans. Before returning for Days 3 and 4, work with other teachers in your department or your school to plan a unit of instruction all the way through Stages 1 and 2 of the Standards-Based Education process.

Contact Information

  • Marlee Tierce
    • K-5 Science Education Program Specialist
  • 1754 Twin Towers East, Atlanta, Georgia 30334
  • Office phone: (404) 463-1977
  • Office email:

Contact Information

  • Adrian Neely
    • 6-8 Science Education Program Specialist
  • 1754 Twin Towers East, Atlanta, Georgia 30334
  • Office phone: (404) 463-1765
  • Office email:

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