"...'assessment' refers to all those activities undertaken by
teachers, and by their students in assessing themselves , which provide
information to be used as feedback to modify the teaching and learning
activities in which they are engaged."
Inside the Black Box, Black and Wiliam, 1998
Paul Black and Dylan Wiliam, 1998 Published by nferNelson Publishing Company
Assessment has two main purposes:
- assessment of learning (also known as summative assessment)
- assessment for learning (also known as formative assessment).
Assessment of learning is any assessment that summarises
where learners are at a given point in time - it provides a snapshot of
what has been learned (in terms of both attainment and achievement).
"Assessment for learning is the process of seeking and interpreting
evidence for use by learners and their teachers to decide where the learners
are in their learning, where they need to go and how best to get there."
Assessment Reform Group, 2002
AfL is any assessment activity that informs the next steps to learning.
The key message is that AfL depends crucially on actually using the information
|Key characteristics of AfL
||Key characteristics of AfL Key areas of development
|AfL is embedded in a view that assessment is an essential part of
learning and teaching.
||Conditions for learning need to be secure Designing opportunities
for learning Day-to-day assessment strategies
|AfL involves sharing learning goals with learners.
||Using curricular targets Designing opportunities for learning Providing
feedback on learning
AfL aims to help learners know and recognise the standards for which
they are aiming. Using curricular targets Formative use of summative
|AfL involves learners in peer and self-assessment.
||Providing feedback on learning Establishing day-to-day assessment
strategies Formative use of summative assessment data
|AfL provides feedback that helps learners recognise the next steps
they need to take, and how to take them.
||Providing feedback on learning Establishing how to use ICT to support
|AfL is underpinned by the confidence that every learner can improve.
||Conditions for learning need to be secure Providing feedback on
|AfL involves both learner and teacher reviewing and reflecting on
||Providing feedback on learning Involving parents and carers Formative
use of summative assessment data Establishing how to use ICT to support