Formative Assessment

Get insights about short, classroom-based pulse checks teachers use to determine students’ growth and learning on skills and topics


What Is Formative Assessment? An EdWeek Video Explainer
Formative assessment can be a tricky kind of testing to understand. EdWeek's video explainer can help.
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School & District Management Opinion Let's Dump the Obsession With Standardized Testing
Digital portfolios and student, faculty, and family surveys to gauge school culture are more robust ways to measure school effectiveness.
Larry Ferlazzo, March 8, 2022
13 min read
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School & District Management Opinion How Can You Measure a School's Success? It's Not Just Through Test Scores
Judge schools on how well they meet the needs of students, staff, and the community, say educators.
Larry Ferlazzo, March 1, 2022
13 min read
Assessment Spotlight Spotlight on Assessment in 2022
This Spotlight will help you understand how to use assessment data to guide student learning and examine the debate over standardized tests.
February 2, 2022
Getty + Laura Baker/Education Week
Teacher Preparation Don't Rush to 'Diagnose' Learning Loss With a Formal Test. Do This Instead
Beware these danger zones when trying to determine what students know and need to learn this fall, experts say.
Catherine Gewertz, August 5, 2020
9 min read
Teacher Lee Gang-in gives an online class to her high school students amid the coronavirus outbreak in Seoul, South Korea.
Teacher Lee Gang-in gives an online class to her high school students amid the coronavirus outbreak in Seoul, South Korea.
Ahn Young-joon/AP
Teacher Preparation Classroom Routines Must Change. Here's What Teaching Looks Like Under COVID-19
Experts say there are some priorities for instruction this year that cut across virtual and brick-and-mortar environments.
Sarah Schwartz, August 5, 2020
8 min read
Abigail French
Abigail French
Classroom Technology How These 4 Educators Are Using Ed Tech to Transform Their Teaching
Learn how four teachers used new ed-tech tools to improve student engagement, differentiate learning, deploy better assessments, and communicate more effectively with parents.
Madeline Will & Sarah Schwartz, April 23, 2019
9 min read
Future of Work Opinion David Conley on Next Generation Assessment
In the latest episode of the podcast, Dr. David Conley, a professor in the college of education at the University of Oregon, discusses his new book and offers 10 principles for better assessment--and a vision for how assessment can be integrated into learning.
Tom Vander Ark, September 19, 2018
5 min read
Assessment Opinion World Class Work Takes Models, Practice, Revision and Support
We've visited thousands of high schools around the world and seen young people doing world-class work both inside and outside the classroom. Here are the common conditions, cultures and connections we've observed that power this world-class work.
Tom Vander Ark, October 9, 2017
6 min read
Assessment Opinion Better Formative Feedback: Work Worth Doing in a Place Worth Being
While everything about a learning environment may provide formative feedback to students, not everything qualifies as formative assessment. Here is what we do know about what formative assessment is and how it works.
Tom Vander Ark, August 31, 2017
6 min read
Assessment Video: A Teacher Explains Formative Assessments
How do formative assessments differ from other types of assessments? A math coach explains.
Madeline Will, February 24, 2017
1 min read
Assessment Video What Is Formative Assessment?
Ask five teachers what formative assessment is and you’re likely to get five different explanations. Confusion abounds around this teaching technique even though it’s widely used in classrooms nationwide. To bring some clarity to the topic, Education Week Associate Editor Catherine Gewertz interviews Meghan Pazmino, a math coach at Ross Elementary School in Washington, who explains what formative assessment is and how it differs from interim or summative assessments.
February 17, 2017
Assessment Survey: Classroom, Formative Tests Far More Useful Than End-of-Year Exams
NWEA, which makes the MAP tests, commissioned a poll that found educators, parents, and students value classroom testing and formative tests because they help improve teaching and learning.
Catherine Gewertz, May 5, 2016
2 min read
Curriculum Acclaimed Educator Jaime Escalante Featured in New U.S. Postage Stamp
Escalante, the Bolivian native and former U.S. high school math teacher, died of cancer in 2010.
Kristine Kim, January 29, 2016
1 min read
Special Report Understanding Formative Assessment
This special report aims to deepen educators' understanding about formative assessment, what it is, and how to use it effectively to get good information about students' learning progress in real time.
November 11, 2015