WestEd Releases Influential Papers on Formative Assessment

westedWestEd believes that the Common Core State Standards offer educators a unique opportunity to use formative assessment to help raise student achievement. They hope to help make this happen with the release of three new papers about formative assessment.

WestEd, an agency that works with education and other communities to promote excellence, achieve equity, and improve learning for children, youth, and adults, recently released three defining papers on formative assessment:

Formative assessment in the classroom aims to reveal not just what students are learning, but how they are learning, with results used to guide instruction. Students can use formative assessment results to better understand and advance their learning. The Common Core State Standards, and the common assessment systems being developed to support them, offer educators the opportunity to use formative assessment as part of a balanced approach to raising student achievement.

“Integrating formative assessment in the classroom appears to have great potential for improving instruction and learning,” says Glen Harvey, CEO of WestEd. “These papers are intended to build foundational understanding among teachers, administrators, and policymakers, of this important assessment process.”

Each paper stresses the idea that unless assessments are understood and implemented in the right fashion, they will lose their capacity to help teachers improve instruction.

These papers were released as part of an education policy forum convened by WestEd and the National Association of State Boards of Education (NASBE). The event examined the role of formative assessment in the classroom, its potential for improving student learning, and the challenges that policymakers must address as the field works to build coordinated assessment systems that can provide information useful for instruction and policy.

For more information and to access the papers, please visit: http://www.wested.org/cs/we/view/rs_press/166