NDSU Distance & Continuing Education (DCE)

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Types of Assessment

Posted on Apr, 17 2012

Purposeful assessment ensures student learning and informs teaching practices. There are two main types of assessment: formative and summative. While summative assessment is vital to the learning process, formative assessment is just as important and useful.

Formative assessment represents feedback provided to students regularly during a class/unit/semester, aimed at making adjustments for both the teacher and the students in the learning process. It can consist of observation, teacher-guided questioning, classroom discussion, informal conversations, exit slips/cards, quizzes, etc.

Summative assessment systematically measures student understanding at key points in the learning process, via tests, exams, papers, presentations, projects, authentic performances or other instruments that culminate in a cumulative evaluation of knolwedge.