Idea Bank: Performance-Based Assessmentby: Kabba Colley

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Performance-based assessment is appropriate to use in a project-based, problem-based, or inquiry-based science classroom because it is consistent with the way students learn—by investigating a question or problem using tools and materials (i.e., performing an act). Since students in a project-based classroom learn by producing a product or performing an act, it is only fitting for them to be assessed using methods similar to those used to teach them—thus aligning assessment with instruction. This article provides two common examples of performance-based assessments that science teachers can use in (or adapt for) their classrooms and a discussion of their strengths and limitations.

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  • on Wed Jul 27, 2011 12:28 PM

Reading this article you are able to understand the difference between structured and open-ended performance assessment. Examples are provided. Scoring, strengths, and limitations are provided for both. The article ends with some assumption made about performance based instructions. In the worlds of the author ‘Science is also a performance-based enterprise, and we should expect our students to demonstrate scientific knowledge and understanding through performance.” Reading this article will give you an opportunity to reflect on which type is best for you and your students and hopefully will steer you to providing some performance assessments in your classroom.

Adah  (San Antonio, TX)
Adah (San Antonio, TX)

  • on Fri May 20, 2011 8:10 AM

The validity of an assessment is based on its ability to measure what it was intended to measure. This article presents an interesting discussion on the pros and cons of using performance assessments, as well as the different types of performance objectives. There are also several examples of common performance objectives. A nice follow-up to this journal would be a review of grading performance assessments, such as rubric development.

Angelika Fairweather  (Bradenton, FL)
Angelika Fairweather (Bradenton, FL)

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