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Formative Assessment: raising standards inside the classroom Black. , P. (1998), provides a brief overview of the evidence, both qualitative and quantitative about the quality of teacher’s classroom assessment practices, about the effectiveness of good formative assessment in promoting pupil’s learning and the features of classroom assessment that enhances students learning. Paul Black carried out two practical inquiries in various schools. The first experiment involved twelve classes of thirty pupils each in two schools.
This experiment work was structured around pupil’s tools of systematic and reasoned inquiry and greatly emphasized on student’s communication skills and peer assessment.
The students were required to carry out a science group project which involved experimentation. The results showed that the students who had the best assessment process achieved the highest scores. This was only possible where students were able to communicate effectively with each other and were able to evaluate their own understanding of the concept being taught.
Thus, the author showed that self- and peer assessment can be achieved by giving pupil’s opportunities to reflect their learning.
Similarly, the second experiment involved forty eight eleven year old Israeli pupils from twelve classes across four schools where half of those selected being in the top quartile of their class on tests of mathematics and language and other half being in the lower quartile.
They were taught materials not directly related to their normal curriculum, and given written tasks to be tackled individually under supervision, with an oral introduction and supervision. Then the pupil’s were divided into three groups and feedbacks were provided.
The first group was given comments only, the second group was given grades only and the third group was given comments with grades. The research showed that for ‘comments only’ showed an increase in the performance of the students while the other two groups showed a significant decline in the scores across the three sessions.
Therefore, this research article tries to show that if feedback comments are in principle, it is operationally helpful for a pupil’s work, and literature also indicates that ‘task-involving’ feedback is more effective than ‘ego-involving’ feedback. Likewise, the reports studied by Paul Black and his colleagues showed that formative assessment helps to enhance feedback between the students and the teacher as it increases new modes of pedagogy and will cause a significant changes in the classroom practices.
Similarly, formative assessment increases pupil participation in the classroom and can help affect motivation and self-esteem of pupils. Therefore, effective teaching must be carried out in a classroom that will enhance students learning. However, posing of questions is a natural and direct way of checking on learning, but is often unproductive. It becomes important for teachers to generate good questions and this can be obtained from outside sources such as internet and library sources. Thus, teachers should ask themselves that: Do I really know enough about the understanding of my pupils to be able to help each of them?
Therefore, what seems both obvious and problematic is that the whole area is at the heart of pedagogy and may have been appraised and shaped further in terms of a theory of larger scope to encompass school learning comprehensively. One of the limitations of this article is that this has not been attempted, so that what is here needs the discipline of a broader context. Thus, a classroom must be implemented that focuses on the policy for raising standards that will help improve formative assessment. (Black. , P. 1998. Formative assessment: raising standards inside the classroom. School Science Review.
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