Q&A #162


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From: Susan (for Teacher2Teacher Service)
Date: May 05, 1998 at 17:09:01
Subject: Re: Defining assessment

Some very quick, non-textbook definitions: 1) Authentic assessment - assessment tasks that are real problems: If my driveway is 15 feet long, 4 feet wide, and 6 inches thick, how many bags of cement must I use if one bag equals 20 cubic feet? Students cannot 'fudge' what they don't know on an authentic assessment - they usually do not contain leading questions. They measure real mathematics. 2) Alternative assessments - Never really heard a good definition, but they are usually assessments that measure the same thing as the "regular assessment," but do so in a different way. Perhaps asking a student to construct something or having a student make up five test questions that measure XYZ would be an alternative to just asking questions about XYZ. 3) Performance assessments - where students actually DO. They weigh, measure, construct, make change, etc.

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