•  Assessments

    Types of Assessments

    Close-Ended Selected Response


    •multiple choice





    Open-Ended Constructed Response


    •fill in the blank

    •short answer

    •label diagram

    •“show your  work”

    •visual representation

    (e.g., web, concept map, flow   chart, graph/table, picture)




    •research paper


    •lab report






    •art exhibit

    •science project


    •video/ Podcast






    •oral presentation


    •science lab


    •athletic demo/competition




    •oral questioning






    •“think aloud”

    •learning log

    Student Self-Assessment


    •Teacher-made prompts for reflection

    content/skills-specific conferences

    •discussion (whole-class or small-group)

    •reflection logs

    •weekly self-evaluations

    •self-assessment checklists and inventories

    •teacher-student interviews


    •student-work artifacts       •best work selection     •process documentation         •reflections

    •accomplishments              •difficulties                  • surprises


    Formative Assessment—Assessment for Teaching and Learning


    Benefits of Formative Assessments for Teachers

    Benefits of Formative Assessments for Students

    1.    Teachers are able to determine what standards students already know and to what degree.

    2.    Teachers can decide what minor modifications or major changes in instruction they need to makes so that all students can succeed in upcoming instruction and on subsequent assessments.

    3.    Teachers can create appropriate lessons and activities for groups of learners or individual students.

    4.    Teachers can inform students about their current progress in order to help them set goals for improvement.

    (Boston, 2002)

    1.    Students are more motivated to learn.

    2.    Students take responsibility for their own learning.

    3.    Students become users of assessment.

    4.    Students learn valuable lifelong skills such as self-evaluation, self-assessment, and goal setting.

    5.    Student achievement can improve from 21-41 percentile points.



    Formative Assessment Strategies

    Tools for Formative Assessment
    Techniques to Check for Understanding

    Index Card Summaries/Questions

    Periodically, distribute index cards and ask students to write on both sides, with these instructions: (Side 1) Based on our study of (unit topic), list a big idea that you understand and word it as a summary statement. (Side 2) Identify something about (unit topic) that you do not yet fully understand and word it as a statement or question.

    Hand Signals

    Ask students to display a designated hand signal to indicate their understanding of a specific concept, principal, or process: - I understand____________ and can explain it (e.g., thumbs up). - I do not yet understand ____________ (e.g., thumbs down). - I’m not completely sure about ____________ (e.g., wave hand).

    One Minute Essay

    A one-minute essay question (or one-minute question) is a focused question with a specific goal that can, in fact, be answered within a minute or two.

    Analogy Prompt

    Periodically, present students with an analogy prompt: (A designated concept, principle, or process) is like _________________ because _________________________________________________.

    Web or Concept Map

    Any of several forms of graphical organizers which allow learners to perceive relationships between concepts through diagramming key words representing those concepts.

    Misconception Check

    Present students with common or predictable misconceptions about a designated concept, principle, or process. Ask them whether they agree or disagree and explain why. The misconception check can also be presented in the form of a multiple-choice or true-false quiz.

    Student Conference

    One on one conversation with students to check their level of understanding.

    3-Minute Pause

    The Three-Minute Pause provides a chance for students to stop, reflect on the concepts and ideas that have just been introduced, make connections to prior knowledge or experience, and seek clarification.

    • I changed my attitude about…

    • I became more aware of…

    • I was surprised about…

    • I felt…

    • I related to…

    • I empathized with…


    Walk around the classroom and observe students as they work to check for learning.  Strategies include:
    •Anecdotal Records



    A process in which students collect information about their own learning, analyze what it reveals about their progress toward the intended learning goals and plan the next steps in their learning.

    Exit Card

    Exit cards are written student responses to questions posed at the end of a class or learning activity or at the end of a day.



    Portfolio Check

    Check the progress of a student’s portfolio.  A portfolio is a purposeful collection of significant work, carefully selected, dated and presented to tell the story of a student’s achievement or growth in well-defined areas of performance, such as reading, writing, math, etc.  A portfolio usually includes personal reflections where the student explains why each piece was chosen and what it shows about his/her growing skills and abilities.


    Quizzes assess students for factual information, concepts and discrete skill.  There is usually a single best answer.  Some quiz examples are:

    • Multiple Choice

    • True/False

    • Short Answer

    • Paper and Pencil

    • Matching

    • Extended Response

    Journal Entry

    Students record in a journal their understanding of the topic, concept or lesson taught.  The teacher reviews the entry to see if the student has gained an understanding of the topic, lesson or concept that was taught. 

    Choral Response

    In response t o a cue, all students respond verbally at the same time.  The response can be either to answer a question or to repeat something the teacher has said. 

    A-B-C Summaries

    Each student in the class is assigned a different letter of the alphabet and they must select a word starting with that letter that is related to the topic being studied.


    A form of reflection immediately following an activity.

    Idea Spinner

    The teacher creates a spinner marked into 4 quadrants and labeled “Predict, Explain, Summarize, Evaluate.”  After new material is presented, the teacher spins the spinner and asks students to answer a question based on the location of the spinner.  For example, if the spinner lands in the “Summarize” quadrant, the teacher might say, “List the key concepts just presented.”

    Inside-Outside Circle

    Inside and outside circles of students face each other.  Within each pair of facing students, students quiz each other with questions they have written. Outside circle moves to create new pairs.  Repeat.

    Numbered Heads Together

    Each student is assigned a number.  Members of a group work together to agree on an answer.  The teacher randomly selects one number.   Student with that number answers for the group.

    One Sentence Summary

    Students are asked to write a summary sentence that answers the “who, what where, when, why, how” questions about the topic.

    One Word Summary

    Select (or invent) one word which best summarizes a topic.

    Think-Pair- Share

    Students think individually, then pair (discuss with partner), then share with the class.

    Ticket to Leave

    Closing activity where students respond in writing or verbally to short assignments.

    Turn to Your Partner

    Teacher gives direction to students.  Students formulate individual response, and then turn to a partner to share their answers.  Teacher calls on several random pairs to share their answers with the class.



    Oral Questioning

    - How is __________ similar to/different from ________________?

    - What are the characteristics/parts of _______________________?

    - In what other ways might we show show/illustrate ___________?

    - What is the big idea, key concept, moral in _________________?

    - How does ________________ relate to ____________________?

    - What ideas/details can you add to _________________________?

    - Give an example of ____________________________________?

    - What is wrong with ____________________________________?

    - What might you infer from ______________________________?

    - What conclusions might be drawn from ____________________?

    - What question are we trying to answer? What problem are we trying to solve?

    - What are you assuming about ____________________________?

    - What might happen if __________________________________?

    - What criteria would you use to judge/evaluate _______________?

    - What evidence supports ________________________________?

    - How might we prove/confirm ____________________________?

    - How might this be viewed from the perspective of ___________?

    - What alternatives should be considered ____________________?

    - What approach/strategy could you use to ___________________?

    AFRE – Keys to Instructional Excellence, 2008
    AFRE – Standards-Based Instructional Planning and Designing, 2008



























    Standardized Test-Like Questioning and Thinking


    Main Ideas

    Significant Details

    •The main point of the article is

    •Summarize what you read.

    •The main theme of the story is

    •List the facts regarding

    •The text is about . . .

    •The main idea is about

    •The story/article mainly tells . . .

    •Which of the following best expresses the main idea?

    •On the basis of information in the passage, we can determine that . . .

    •What would be the best title for this passage?

    •Which statement best expresses the central idea of this passage?

    •The main idea expressed in this passage is…

    •The most accurate expression of the central or controlling idea of this passage is…

    •List the facts regarding

    •Describe the facts 

    •Describe the characteristics of the object’s properties.

    •According to the ________ which of the following is/are true

    •In the article the author explains

    •The paragraph suggests that . . .

    •In this passage, the author explains

    •In which location

    •All are true EXCEPT

    •The passages indicates that ______ does______ for

    •According to the passages who said

    •According to the passage what happened when



    Sequence/Order Relationships

    Comparison Relationships

    •Trace the development of

    •Sequence the events leading up to

    •What do you do first when you   . . .  Next

    •List the steps involved in . . .

    •What steps did _________ take to solve reach her goal.

    Sequence the order of events.

    •What happened first in this passage? Next? Then?  After?  Finally?

    •The next likely event would be (predict) . . .

    •After doing _____________, the character's next decision was to _____________.

    •What steps did __________ take to achieve his/her goal in the story?

    •The final step in the process is . . .

    •After the hypothesis is created, what is the next step in the Scientific Method?

    •Trace the development of . . .

    •Sequence the events leading up to . . .

    •What do you do first when you   . . .  Next . . .

    •List the steps involved in . . .

    •What steps did you use to complete the math problem?

    • What step was omitted from this process?

    •Place the following steps in the correct order.

    •What happened in the . . .

    •What are the sub-stages in . . .


    •List similarities and differences.

    •Compare and contrast the following

    •What are the significant similarities or differences

     between _____________ and ______________?

    •Which two are most similar or most different?

    •How are the two characters similar and/or different?

    •How are (two or more characters/entities) alike?

    •Details in the passages suggest that _____ and blank are alike or different.

    •_______ is better than ______ because

    •How are _____ and _____ connected?

    •Unlike _________, __________ is

    •Compared to ______, _______ is

    •The passage compares _______ to _______ because

    Interpreting and Applying Instructions

    •How do you do ___ if   

    •How do you apply these steps in this situation?

    •What are the steps to  

    •Which step would you use after you . . .

    •Apply instructions that you read in the reading materials to

    •If _________ changes, then how would you complete/make

    •Apply the instructions to (new situation) that is similar to the one described in the printed directions.

    •You would follow the directions to _________ unless

    •Explain the rationale behind the procedure to ______

    •Why would you __________ before

    Dr. Bobb Darnell   bobbdarnell@mac.com  1/10   www.achievementstrategies.org



    Cause-Effect Relationships

    Drawing Conclusions/Making Generalizations

    •List the causes of

    •What were the effects of ?

    •How does ____________ affect _____________?

    •What led up to ?

    •The largest effect caused by _______ is

    •Which of the following was NOT an effect of

    *What resulted from

    •_______decision resulted in what consequence?

    •Because _______ happened, it can be reasonably inferred that

    •__________ happened as a result of

    •The author claims that when _______ happens, it causes

    •According to the passage, _______ was ______ because

    •_____________ is determined by ____________

    •The passages indicates that _______ depends on

    •Why did _______________become/did

    •The author said that ___________ pleased her because

    •Based on the details, __________happens because

    •Based on the details you can conclude that

    •The main character decides not to _______ because

    •A person would not _________ because


    •Can you say that most    ?   Why or why not?

    •Based upon the events, what can you conclude about       ?

    •You may predict that

    •During the time _______takes place, _____ is

    •The author's ________ can best be described as

    •Which of the following best describes what may happen next.

    •The main character appears to believe that

    •One thing that you might expect _____ to say about _____

    •It can be reasonably inferred from _____ that

    •One thing that you might expect would happen when ________

    •According to _____ the author suggests that

    •Researchers are searching for _____ that can best be described as

    •Which of the following bests assesses the narrator's assessment of

    •How is ______ a significant part of _______

    •After _____ happens, you can likely conclude that ______ will happen.

    •It can be reasonably inferred that the answer that _______ would give is

    •Which detail support the conclusion that


    Author’s Point of View/Purpose

    Problem/Solution Relationships

    •The point of view of the author       was

    •How does the author use __________ technique •How does the author get her/his point across?

    •How do you think the author feels about 

    •What did the author mean when he/she said        

    •In this passage, the author was likely attempting to

    •Which of the following best describes the author's attitude toward

    •The overall message in the passage is that

    •A clear intent of the author in writing this passage is to describe

    •The narrator's point of view is that

    •The author's attitude toward _____ is that

    •Which statement by the author best supports the argument that

    •How does the author prove her point about _____

    •What problem is identified by the author?

    •What solutions does the author suggest?

    •What is the best solution for the problem?  Justify your position.

    •What would happen if  

    •How many different ways can

    •_________ can be solved if a person _________

    •One thing that can be done to solve ______ is

    •The first step in eliminating the problem of ____ is



    Word Meanings and Phrases

    •Define the following term

    •Define what is meant by

    •Define ___________ from the context clues.

    •Provide an example and non-example of _______.

    •What does the word __________ mean?

    •As it is used, the word _________ means

    •The quote means

    •The author defines ________ as being

    •_________ literally means

    •When someone says _________ he/she means

    •The author's use of the word __________is meant to convey the

    •Which of the following best explains _____ in the quote ___

    Dr. Bobb Darnell   bobbdarnell@mac.com  1/10   www.achievementstrategies.org




    Comprehension/Thinking Skills Targets


    Sample Questions

    1.     Identify and infer main ideas.






    2.     Locate and interpret significant, implied, and subtly stated details.






    3.     Order sequences of events.






    4.     Differentiate between major and subtle comparison relationships between people and ideas.






    5.     Analyze implied, subtle, or complex cause-effect relationships.






    6.     Extrapolate the appropriate meanings of words, phrases, or statements from figurative or technical contexts.






    7.      Draw inferences, conclusions,  or generalizations about text and support them with textual evidence and/or prior knowledge.



    8       Analyze and interpret the author’s purpose and point of view.






    9.      Identify problem-solution relationships.







    10.    Apply instructions with conditionals and new situations and give rationale for following the procedures.









    Dr. Bobb Darnell  bobbdarnell@mac.com © 1/10  8/11