Assessment is the process of gathering evidences of students’ performance over a period of time to determine learning and mastery of skills. Such evidences of learning can take the forms of dialogue record, journals, written work, portfolios, tests and other learning tasks. Assessment requires review of journal entries, written work, presentation, research papers, essays, story written, test results, etc.
The overall goal of assessment is to improve student learning and provide students, parents and teachers with reliable information regarding student progress and extent of attainment of the expected learning outcomes. Assessments use, as basis, the levels of achievement and standards required for the curricular goals appropriate for the grade or year level.
Assessment results show the more permanent learning and clearer picture of the student’s ability. Assessment of skill attainment is relatively easier than assessment of understanding and other mental ability. Skills can be practiced and are readily demonstrable. Either the skill exists at a certain level or it doesn’t. Assessment of understanding is much more complex. We can assess a person’s knowledge in a number of ways but we need to infer from certain indicators of understanding through written descriptions. Assessment of learning outcomes will be treated in a separate chapter.
Evaluation originates from the rootword “value” and so when we evaluate, we expect our process to give information regarding the worth, appropriateness, goodness, validity or legality of something for which a reliable measurement has been made. Evaluation is a process designed to provide information that will help us to make a judgment about a particular situation. The end result of evaluation is to adopt, reject or revise what has been evaluated.
Objects of evaluation include instructional programs, school projects, teachers, students, and educational goals. Examples include evaluating the “education for all” project of a school district, the comparative effectiveness of two remedial reading programs, the correlation between achievement test results and diagnostic test results, and attributes of an effective teacher. Evaluation involves data collection and analysis and quantitative and qualitative methods. Evaluation can help educators determine the success of their academic programs and signal efforts to improve student achievement. It can also help identify the success factors of programs and projects.
Evaluations are aften divided into two broad categories: formative and summative.
Formative evaluation is a method of judging the worth of a program while the program activities are in progress. This type of evaluation focuses on the process. The results of formative evaluation give opportunities to the- proponents, learners and teachers how well the objectives of the program are being attained. Its main objective is to determine deficiencies so that the appropriate interventions can be done. Formative evaluation may also be used in analyzing learning materials, student learning and achievements and teacher effectiveness.
Summative evaluation is a method of judging the worth of a program at the end of the program activities. The focus is on the result. The instruments used to collect data for summative evaluation are questionnaire, survey forms, interview/observation guide and tests. Summative evaluation- is designed to determine the effectiveness of a program or activity based on its avowed purposes. Striven gave as techniques for summative evaluation: pretest-posttest with one group; pretest-posttest with experimental and control groups; one group descriptive analysis. The subject of evaluation is wider than assessment which focuses speciffically on student learning outcomes.
To summarize, we measure height, distance, weight; we assess learning outcome; we evaluate results in terms of some criteria or objectives.