Formative Assessment with Tech Tools

Formative Assessment with Tech Tools

Monday, Dec 03, 2018

Formative assessment is a great tool by which teachers can ascertain and ensure that students are able to grasp what is being taught. An assessment becomes formative when the lesson is modified according to the information generated by it, to aid the learning process. A task or activity is not formative unless the information it provides is actually used to identify progress and gaps in learning. Formative assessment involves day-to-day, and often informal, assessments to explore students’ understanding. It enables a teacher to decide how best to help students develop that understanding.

Quite often, the importance of formative assessment is neglected by teachers in the rush to finish the syllabus. Yet, in the rush to cover more, students actually learn less, and the quality of teaching is compromised. Without comprehending, applying practically or reflecting on the new concepts, students’ retention power is unlikely to be much.

Fortunately, teachers can take the help of tech tools to make formative assessments quick, easy, interesting, engaging, and decisive. However, many factors need to be kept in mind while deciding on a tech tool; like age, ability of students, their technical knowledge, etc. It has been seen that while elementary students are more capable of showing what they know through their actions, older students are more comfortable with quizzes and written responses. The learning objective is also an important factor to be considered before selecting a tech tool for assessment.

Some of the tech tools that can assist teachers for assessment are :
  • Quick Quiz: Multiple-choice quizzes, fill-in-the-gaps, one word answers, match the columns, etc. can help teachers determine exactly how much students have grasped the concept being taught.
  • Graphic Organizer: Students can organize information, make connections, note relationships or fill in data in a graphic organizer, chart or list to present the gist of the lesson taught.
  • Visual Association: Students can match pictures with the concepts or words to make visual association of the topic taught. Use of words and pictures can help students make connections and easily remember the information. This can help teachers to address classroom diversity and cater to different learning styles.
  • Auditory Aids: Audio files can be played to complement the lessons. Auditory quizzes can also be played for the class to develop listening comprehension along with concept clarity.
  • Recap Card: Students can summarize the session or give the main points of the session in a few lines as a recap at the end of the class. This can be keyed in by the students in their hand-held devices or computers. This will let the teacher know where to begin from in the next class.
  • Practical Application: Watching videos or documentaries on the practical application of the concepts can bring better clarity in understanding. The ability to connect concepts with real life can be tested through short questions along with the video.
  • Games: An online or offline game is one of the most interesting ways to test progress of learning. Games like word search, crossword, hangman, number ladders, number triangles, etc. are proven ways of testing different concepts.

On the whole, the time formative assessments take from a lesson is well worth the information teachers can gather and the retention students gain. Identifying the right tech tool to carry out formative assessments is a critical point for teachers.

To know more about such tech tools from Jupsoft iExam, click here.