DTLLS: Enabling Learning and Assessment – Task 1
(ALO 1 - demonstrate understanding and analyse a range of theories, principles and applications of formal and informal assessment and their roles in learning and evaluation.
ALO 2 - discuss the significance of equality and diversity issues for the assessment of learning)
Produce an essay in which you analyse a range of theories, principles and applications relating to the use of formal and informal assessment and their roles in learning and evaluation. You should also discuss the significance of equality and diversity issues for the assessment of learning.
Assessment, in all its forms is a tool for gaining a better understanding of ...view middle of the document...
Throughout a learners engagement in program a continuing process of formative assessment, assessment for learning, takes place. We can divide this type of assessment into two distinct categories; formal and informal formative assessment.
From a socio-cultural view of learning, learning should involve both thought and action in context. James et al. (2006) incorporate the works of Vygotsky into their view on assessment. They argue that teachers need to create an environment in which people can be motivated to think and act in tasks beyond their zone of proximal development. In doing this, tasks become collaborative as pupils need to be involved in both the generation of problems and solutions (which entries one and two support through methods of dialogic talk and directed reading activities). James et al argue that this environment is the foreground before proceeding with assessment; that assessment is carried out alongside learning, not as an ‘after learning’ event.
Black and Wiliam explore fully the implications of effective formative assessment in the classroom. They describe this environment as the black box; a closed environment (for the most part unobserved) into which external inputs such as increased pressure for progression statistics, parental expectations etc. are expected to translate into better outputs, manifested as better pupil performance in external examinations etc. The most difficult part though, is left to teachers. What goes on inside the black box is the major indicator of output. They go on;
‘We start from the self-evident proposition that teaching and learning have to be interactive. Teachers need to know about their pupils’ progress and difficulties with learning so that they can adapt their work to meet their needs—needs which are often unpredictable and which vary from one pupil to another. Teachers can find out what they need in a variety of ways — from observation and discussion in the classroom, and from written work of pupils whether done as homework or in class.’
This theory underpins the practice at XXX and formative assessment continually takes place, and for the most part, possibly contrary to what is thought of as best practice, learners are not informed of this assessment process.
This is because the type of learners that we cater for are for the most part entirely disaffected with their experience of learning, and particularly assessment. Fear of failure is a massive attitudinal and phenomological barrier to assessment. It has been my experience in teaching that learners will perform better when assessment is informal. If done well, exactly the same implications are evident. Teaching can be modified to cover knowledge gaps, and due to the size of XXX we are lucky enough and very able to respond to learners identified as being in greater need of support.
Addition of wait time, in which no answers will be accepted, in the classroom has dramatically increased the incidences of correct...